Finding inspiration when you first start something is easy. Everything about the new activity or hobby is new. All the sights and smells are exciting, and every success fills you with the endorphins of falling in love. That is what happened to me when I became a vegan. As the only vegan I knew, every time I made something edible with one of my handful of vegan cookbooks was a triumph. I spent time in the grocery stores wandering up and down the aisles, trying to find packaged food that was vegan. It was scary and wonderful all at the same time. Every new bite made me feel excited and rebellious.
Time passed. I met other vegans. I married one of them, and our household is an all vegan establishment. Having two vegan chefs at home with tons of kitchen toys, a large bedroom converted into a pantry, and two refrigerators filled with ingredients means that if I can dream it, within a handful of hours, one of us can have it done and on the table for sampling. It is both wonderful and it can be a tricky thing at the same time. I am no longer a vegan on a honeymoon with everything new and heady. I am now in a long term relationship with veganism and I have to find a way to make it work.
Recently, to gather some inspiration and catch lightning in a bottle again, I drove down to Whole Foods. It was a 45 minute drive from my current house, and my husband waited patiently as I strolled down every aisle. I checked packages for some new things to try, picked up some old foods I had not bought since I learned to make them better, and fell into the nostalgia of excitement. Quickly, I was that new vegan again, trying stuff for the first time. I loaded up the cart, and headed home.
That was earlier this week and the excitement is still there, and still contagious. I am thrilled to try new recipes, to make better versions of some of the things I grabbed that were just awful, and that creativity even makes me want to do some sewing. Being creative is something that often snowballs from one realm to another with me.
So if you are reading this as a new vegan, hold onto this time. This time is special and you will look back on it with fondness. If you are reading this as an accomplished vegan, take some time and do something you only did as a newly minted vegan. Make a date night with your lifestyle and find that spark, even if you think it is not missing. You’ll be glad that you did.