Here I was, having made it through 13 days of just eating vegetables and fruits, five of them drinking only juice, and ready to celebrate this weekend by making it to 15 days. But I cheated.
My son had put a whole chicken in the refrigerator a few days ago to defrost and I knew he wasn’t going to cook it, so I took it out and decided to prepare it for my children in case they got hungry later. I squeezed lemon all over it, and rubbed salt and lemon pepper everywhere, including under the breast skin. I also put some mint leaves under the skin for an extra flavor kick. Then I stuffed the cavity with chunks of onions and put it in the oven. The giblets and neck were left over, so, I thought, I’ll just fry these up with some pepper and salt. That was when I knew I was going to eat them. I just couldn’t take it, I could imagine the tasty pan-fried giblets, and the fried skin on the neck…my mouth was watering.
I told my daughter that I was going to eat the chicken.
“Be careful mom,” she warned. “You have to come off these detox things slowly, so you don’t get sick. You should eat only soups and salads, and maybe some nuts and grains first.”
I’ve been eating salads and soups for two weeks, I thought to myself, and I’m done. I want chicken.
“But if your body is telling you that you need it, go for it,” my daughter added.
That bit of encouragement was all I needed. I finished frying the giblets, heart and neck, warmed up the Japanese eggplant from last night, and sat down to eat. I savored every bit, eating every piece of meat off the chicken neck, even popping it in my mouth so I could suck all the juices out. It was so good.
And I didn’t feel one bit of regret. It was worth it, stopping two days short of my overall goal.
I can always do this again, and do the whole 15 days, but in a place where there are no people ordering pizzas, tacos, steaks and wine in front of me, away from restaurants. I’ll have to become a monk or nun or something. Those people are used to self-denial. I am not, but I have learned a great deal about myself these past two weeks. I can deny myself the many pleasures of food and drink, knowing in the end what I am doing will be good for me. I can sit with people eating and exert willpower. And I have learned that there are many interesting and tasty ways to prepare vegetables.
A few hours after I ate the giblets and neck, I tore a leg off the chicken and ate that, as well as some of the tasty crispy skin that was soaked in lemon. Just a little, that’s all. Then I made a juice with apples, cucumber, parsley, and celery to make up for my transgressions.
I feel good.