a summer thanksgiving

Hi. This is going to be one of those rambling posts and there’s no food to be found this time. I logged in to write a post about cake today, but I ended up speaking from the heart and, shockingly, my heart just wasn’t set on cake at the moment. I promise there will be cake soon. I found a recipe on The Kitchn for a cake with pudding on the bottom and I was all like yes, please! But that’s for another day. Today I just want to be vulnerable for a second.

For the most part, I’m a pretty happy person. I dance out my sour feelings (literally, most of the time to really dumb music) and I shake things off quickly. I have become pretty good at saying what is bothering me and then, because odds are it’s totally beyond my control, letting it go.

One time someone wrote to me through this blog and told me that they wished I were dead because I am vegan.

It’s okay. Don’t freak out.

They then told me that they wished they could murder me and all other vegans.

I laughed it off and deleted the comment. I knew that they were probably just a troll. Even if they truly meant it, well, all the better reason to delete them forever because I don’t have room in my life for hate. It’s not welcome here. But that particular message sticks with me, though probably not for the reason you’re thinking.

I often wonder about that person and I wish that I could snap my fingers and remove that hate from their bellies. Life would be so much easier for them without the burden of carrying all that anger around. Even if they really were a troll and didn’t truly mean it, they must have been dealing with something crappy enough to make them think that trolling blogs and sending out hurtful messages would somehow make them feel better. I feel sorry for that person. I hope that I never, ever find myself walking around with that kind of black cloud hanging over me.

I feel like I’ve been carrying around a lot of negativity these past few days. Nothing anywhere near what this person is feeling. I’m talking about silly, petty things. Things that aren’t even worth mentioning. But even though they’re not worth mentioning, they’re still there. I sometimes find myself in a spiral that’s difficult to break. I think a negative thought and then I immediately get mad at myself for being negative. So there I am, aiming negativity at myself for emitting negativity in the first place, and it circles around again and again and again. Every single one of my negative thoughts have been regarding situations beyond my control. Silly, little things that mean absolutely nothing and that I won’t even remember a couple months from now. One or two have been aimed at individuals, and those are the ones that I’m most ashamed of. I try very hard every single day to be kind to those around me. You never know what someone is dealing with at home, at work or in their hearts. You never know what burdens someone else is carrying around, and being rude or judgmental can only bring more harm.

The reason that I’m sending these words out here into internet land is because I bet there are things bothering you, too. Big or small, I bet you’re haunted by a negative thought or two. I hope that you aren’t, but we’re all human. Things seep into our minds and into our veins and the negativity, regardless of where it stems from or who it’s aimed at, it digs into us and it latches on.

I hope that you’ll join me right now by letting go of any negative thoughts you’ve had today. If you’re like me, you’ll also want to forgive yourself for being so negative in the first place. It happened. It’s over. And finally, say some things that you are thankful for. You don’t have to say them to me. Just say them in your mind, that’s good enough. It doesn’t have to be an exhaustive list, either. Just a few things that, in this very moment, you are thankful for. Let’s focus on the positive. Let’s celebrate Thanksgiving in August.

  • I am thankful that I have a family who loves and supports me every single moment of my life. Not once have I ever had to question their love for me. If any of my younger cousins are reading this, I hope that they’ll take this message and some positivity into their hearts. I can’t wait to see them next month.
  • I am thankful that I have, by marriage, adopted even more family members who bring me nothing but happiness and love.
  • I am thankful that I have not just one, but a handful of dear friends that I cherish and trust with my entire being.
  • I am thankful for everyone who drops by this blog to read about whatever things I happen to be covering in chocolate that day. I am thankful that I have tons and tons of heartfelt, positive messages to cancel out that one, hateful note.
  • Last but certainly not least, I am thankful for all the luxuries and gifts that I take for granted every day, including my health, my little apartment, my access to clean water and all the food I could ever hope for, and my safety.

I feel so much better.

Who wants cake? There will be cake. I promise.


18 thoughts on “a summer thanksgiving

  1. As a second year graduate student dreading the start of the school year for the first time in her nineteen years of school, this post is just what I needed. I’ve been letting the pressures of school and professional development turn me into someone I don’t recognize. Thank you for taking the time to write down what so many of us need to sit down and admit to ourselves. Life is too short for negativity!

  2. I just want to tell you that I love you, your face, your cat ramblings, and your vegan-ness.

    Thank you for writing this and having the courage to talk about what’s going on behind all the cake.

    Now please go hug a cat or three.


    • Moose said you wouldn’t be so supportive if you knew that all my negative thoughts this week spawn from my deep hatred of Ryan Kesler :)

      • Kes can kinda be a DBAG, I’ll agree with that. And he dives too much. This ain’t soccer.

        Moose is just saying words out of hurt because he might not get to stare lovingly at Claude Giroux if we go into a lockout this season.

  3. Thanks for writing this moving post! I am not a vegan but do eat vegan & cook, bake vegan 5x/ week. I also get such reactions sometimes. Don’t let this guy bother you!
    You are a wonderful & fun person who creates this stunning vegan blog! You are an inspiration to all of us!

    Keep up with the good work & have fun doing it all! :) xxx Hugs to you from Belgium! :)

  4. Just to let you know anytime you have negative feelings or thoughts remember mom is just a text/call away. you can vent to me anytime. Love You. Now for that cake you promised

  5. I think you should be proud of yourself that you received that anonymous person’s negativity, and you didn’t take it on as your own. It would have been easy to diminish in writing or to hold back in terms of openness on your blog. Instead, you keep putting yourself out there with thoughtful posts like this. Well done!

    I’m currently thankful for a sleeping kitty at the foot of the bed, peacefully moaning, while I sip on an iced coffee. Not a bad start to the day!

  6. This was a beautiful post! I struggle with my internal negativity daily, my boyfriend helping me with my battles. I am thankful for him and for my amazingly supportive family.

  7. I normally don’t respond to blogs but this was a very powerful message that touched me. Thanks for posting it, there are people out there that really need to hear it. Wishing you a beautiful and loving day!

  8. It’s amazing how awful people can be when cloaked with the anonymity of the internet.

    I’m not fully vegan, but I am eating mostly vegan due to (genetic; thanks, Mom and Dad!) high cholesterol. Blogs like yours help me not even miss all the old stuff I used to cook (and I cooked pretty healthy). So thank you! I’m excited about all the new recipes I want to try, and how healthy they all are. Thanks for making my journey easier- and delicious! :)

  9. Hi sweetie, Just like your mom said we are a phone call away or an e mail.

    Love Granny and Pa

  10. You are such an encouraging person. My family and I started reading your blog awhile ago when we lived in Kansas and we continue to follow it all the way from Canada! Keep up the good work! You inspire us! And, aren’t you thankful for kitties??!

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  12. Thank you for this thoughful post. It’s sometimes too easy to get caught up in the negativity of others and let them drag us down. I don’t spend nearly as much time being thankful for the wonderful things I have in my life, but I will try to do so more often.

  13. I’m not a vegan, nor do I belong to any group, adrift but occasionally catching the wave of those with more singular perspectives. The web provides an open door forum for everything: every notion, every flaw, every scream, every joy and sadness that a human being can muster. Blogging is a brave act, like performing on stage knowing that maybe this show will have the raging heckler.
    Being the sister of a 61 year old vegan has taught me much, kept my cholesterol low, helped me seek better choices: pasture raised/hormone free meat choices, being mindful of processes. Your moments reflection created a thoughtful ripple…a worthy response, and I for one thank you.

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