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An open letter to JLo, who just went vegan, on Day 12 of my vegan challenge

Dear J-Babes,

I heard you just went vegan, and I did a little happy-dance/booty-shake, because I DID TOO! But I’m not gonna lie. I started out strong—I had already given up most dairy long before my vegan challenge—but the last few days have become HARD. Like, trying-not-to-stab-myself-when-I-smell-eggs hard. Or, if-I-eat-any-more-hummus-I might-freak hard. The-Ren-&-StimpySpace-Madness-episode kind of hard. Jennifer, half the friends that joined me in my month-long vegan challenge have fallen off the wagon screaming, and so has my husband, who’s been cooking eggs under my nose everyday since, taunting me with their creamy, yellow, buttery goodness. Though I haven’t had any transgressions since day 4, when a trace of cheese somehow jumped over my lips and onto my tongue, I’m starting to feel like I’m doing this wrong. I’m eating to fullness and trying to take supplements (let’s be honest, I don’t always remember to take them) but I haven’t always had the time to cook something new and exciting, and it’s making me super cranky. Plus, I roasted cauliflower on Monday to eat with noodles, and I swear it’s multiplying in my fridge. I’ve been eating it everyday and…it won’t go away. You can see that my food palette has been limited.

And there’s been some cognitive/health fallout. On day 8, I started getting clumsier, losing my balance. I almost fell through the window in yoga class twice. Today is day 12, and the truth is, I’m feeling horrible. My head hurts constantly, I’m dizzy, addle-brained, and my decision-making skills have been compromised. Let’s just say I shouldn’t be flying airplanes or performing brain surgery any time soon. Not unless y’all want to die, in which case, someone please pass me a scalpel.

I’m sure all of this is my own damn fault, and I’m now determined to bitch-slap this situation into shape and keep going. I have bunches of vegan friends and they are happy and fine, so I should be too, right? To open up my food repertoire, I’ve been researching more vegan recipes that work with my severe food sensitivities, so now I just have to go ballistic on shopping and cooking, making sure I have variety, and freezing stuff so I’m not eating the same damn thing everyday. Yes, cooking great vegan meals sometimes takes four times as long, chopping and processing ingredients can go on forever. And I was doing so well at it, until I wasn’t. But that’s my problem, and no one else’s.

J-girl, I have a feeling that you’re going to do a better job at this vegan thing than I am. Because you’re an A-lister, you can call up Usher, Ellen, Woody and trade vegan recipes, which is totally amazeballs. You probably have a chef who cooks mouth-watering vegan food around the clock. Me? I’m still waiting for my dog to grow thumbs and man up to the stove. I guess it’s up to me now.

Like I said, I’ll keep going. I’m in this to win this. In the meantime, Jennifer, if you’ve got any tips for avoiding vegan madness, call me. Maybe?