There's just no sugar-coating it (pun): we quit our Whole30 early.
I promised myself I would not be a last-week-quitter when we undertook this endeavor, and felt a tad like a loser that I couldn't follow all the way through.
So what did it? An errant bite of sharp cheddar? One illicit lick of an ice cream cone? An irresistible cocktail?
No, it was my house.
I am in no way suggesting that I am off the hook for quitting, but I am proud that I didn't quit by giving in to a craving.
On Monday the 20th we found out that the photographer would be coming Tuesday and again on Wednesday to shoot the house for our listing. This meant that we started OCD cleaning everything that night.
Whole30 requires a lot of two things: planning and cooking. With our brains suddenly (we had no idea in March that we would even be contemplating moving any time soon) plunged into homeselling mode, there was no room left over for meal plans. And with the kitchen on DEFCON ULTRA levels of cleanliness ("LAYLA IS THAT A CORNER OF A CHEEZ-IT ON THE FLOOR?! DISOWN!"), cooking hearty skillets of sizzling, spattering meat n' veg was not happening even if we'd had our brains together enough to try it. With no energy and an inability to cook, we were barely limping along with packaged stuff that was compliant.
Cleaning the gutters blows (see what I did there?)
Wednesday the 22nd after he had slaved making our tropical rainforest of a backyard look so prime, Jesse decided to throw in the towel. His reasoning was pretty right on: " I don't think the point of Whole30 is to eat nothing but Larabars for two straight days, and that's what I have done. I am not getting healthier like this."
True dat. And what did he choose to break his Whole30 with? A bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios and a fistful of the aforementioned cheez-its. Not quite the delicacies we had been fantasizing about for three weeks, but home-prep had brought him low.
I decided to try to carry on. I was still doing the pharisaical, legalistic Whole30 where I was "technically" following the rules but not the spirit of the program (aka larabars and plantain chips and chicken meatballs). But who cares, I AM A WINNER and would drag myself across the finish line, come hell or high fiber.
We stayed at Jesse's parents house on Thursday night and had planned to stay there all weekend to let our house show as much as possible. By Friday we knew the house was going to sell and we could go home that evening.
I had made it! I survived! I was back in my own home with all my Whole30 vittles laid by and ready to finish strong--bathed in glory and ghee!
On Friday we accepted our buyer's offer. This was what broke me. We had worked our butts off the past week (and the past 8.5 years) making our house shine and we finally sold it! Somehow arugula with oil and lemon juice just wasn't the celebration meal I had envisioned. So my fall from W30 grace went like this:
"I sold my house in one day. Eff it, I'm having a bowl of rice."
"Oh this is so good. But man I am a naughty naughty bad girl. Who cares these complex carbs are so sexy right now! But think of the carb spike QUIET YOU NOMMMMMMM!"
It was just a wholesome serving of wild rice, so even in that I think I am pretty amazing.
And then I ordered a pizza. Whatever. Shut up.
The feelings and thoughts that went along with chowing down on THAT little buddy have been censored as they are too adult for this blog.
So I guess I failed the test of emotional eating. I wanted to celebrate with food and convinced myself I "deserved" something not healthy to do so with. I am at peace with this because I transacted a 6-figure real estate deal in 24 hours (delusions of grandeur are part of my rationalization, leave me these).
Never in a million years would we have chosen to try a Whole 30 while selling and buying a house AND going about our normal full time jobs and parenting three kids. NEV-AH!
What we learned:
1. You can technically "do" a Whole30 but not really get into the spirit of eating healthier. WHEN we do another one, it will be much more about jam-packing our diets with positives instead of just avoiding the no-nos.
2. Dairy makes my nose itch to high heaven. After I ate the pizza, the entire next day I had to resist the urge to drag my nose all over the carpet to assuage the ever-present itch. I am even now only eating dairy when it's super-duper worth it.
3. Drinkable coffee (aka with cream and sugar) is a certain sign of God's grace. It's a potion of no equal (or splenda...pun) that tastes like Eden and makes me feel like Samson. Woe to ye who shall separate me from its loving embrace.
4. Even with only 24 days completed, I feel like my food-thinking was re-oriented (if not completely reprogrammed). It took a good ten minutes in the grocery store on Sunday to realize that I could actually buy anything I wanted (I love having those brakes aplied to my shopping/eating process), and I was even more surprised to find that I actually didn't want a lot of it anyway.
5. Water (tap and LaCroix) is a perfectly satisfying beverage 99% of the time. I did miss having a cocktail on a date night pretty badly though, and think that I would have aged less in the process of homeselling had I been able to turn to drink a bit.
6. The cravings really didn't own me. MUCH more challenging was the planning/patience aspect of not being able to just have my belly filled in 5 minutes. So learning to listen to my appetite and respect it (that sounds so hippie-foodie lame) was a great lesson.
There you have it. 80% completion. I scored a B-minus. I am trying not to feel like a failure and to live under grace and be happy with what we accomplished (food and real-estate wise). I learned a lot, but the most important thing--that we all need to keep in mind--is that I beat Jesse. BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE.
Off to our home inspection! Sugar-stained smooches to you all.