Today was hard. Especially hard.
First, someone at work ate my banana.
I wanted to cry.
Seriously. The tears welled.
Then, I misjudged the size of my rice/bean serving, so I only had about 2/3 of my lunch. Minus the banana.
Then I remembered I had swim team registration and a meeting right after work. I couldn't even go home. And I couldn't buy something out. So I didn't get to eat dinner until 8:30. I had two servings of Ramen noodles. Because I was starving, that's why.
I think I may eat tomorrow. This has been an awful three days. The challenge has been incredibly hard and while I don't want to fail, I also believe it did - for me, anyway - what it was meant to do.
I don't think for a second that I understand what it means to be truly hungry... to have no money for food... to having nothing but the most meager sustenance, which doesn't fill me up or make me feel good or healthy. I did this for three days, knowing full well that it was going to end sooner rather than later. I have known all along that as soon as the challenge is complete, I can go back to eating healthy food and plenty of it.
So I don't really understand. I don't know.
And I hope I never, ever do.
But I have gained a sense of what it must be like. These past three days, I have felt panicked... desperate... exhausted... irritated... frustrated... angry...
And this feeling of deprivation is different than any I've felt before. In the past, when I was on a diet or when I cut out different sorts of food to be healthier, I was depriving myself. I had control over it. But in this case, the deprivation felt different... it felt imposed...
It took away my control.
And losing your control is scary. It's scarier than feeling hungry. It's scarier than not having enough money for food.
I think it must be what truly poor people feel -- out of control.
Yes, this has been horrible and the idea that 1.2 billion people live this way breaks my heart. I'll be looking into ways to help. A few years ago, I met a little old man on Christmas Eve (you can read about that encounter right here) and I wound up feeding him for a whole year, until he fell in his home and was removed by Social Services. I didn't have much then but he got a quarter of my grocery budget every week. It wasn't easy but it made me feel good, knowing I was helping someone who really needed it. It helped me, too, as things were hard then and I believe that focusing on someone else's problems helps you take your mind off your own.
So I'll be finding a way to help... a real, tangible way. If I can help just one person to feel less desperate... deprived... out of control... it won't be enough... but it will be something.
And something is better than nothing.