We all get the same 24 hours in a day. Frankly, blogging is right up there with learning how to meditate, which I am now being forced to do. Yes, I know. They’re both really good to do. But I’d sooner watch paint dry than do either of them. Time is our most precious commodity, and if I’m going to chain myself to a chair, there’d better be some benefit. I’ve had the experience of taking an hour to write, post and then see only a few people read and/or like it. I see this with others who I know have a large following elsewhere. When I can spend a lot less time creating and posting on other platforms like Instagram, Facebook or You Tube, blogging has always felt like a colossal waste of time.
As an author of 6 books that gets me invites speaking at vegfests all over, I have a wild travel and work schedule I love. Along with trying to maintain training as a nationally ranked sprinter and frequent age group winner of local 5K races almost every weekend, I’m pretty maxed out. I got a gold medal at the National Senior Games in my age group in the 4×100 meters 2 months ago, and placed 10th in the US in the 1500 and 800 meters. I won’t bore you with the amount and kind of training and time it takes to do that.
As I’m fond of saying, and even branded it, #runningismyactivism. 😉 Why? Because every time I’m on the podium placing in my age group after the race, wearing my neon yellow “Eat Vegan on $4 a Day” running tank top, (which I usually shed before or during the race to deal with Florida heat and humidity), by default my protein-rich muscles and vegan message shirt are in a whole lot of other photos and spread all over social media. The other winners in my age group share to their peeps both on and off social media, and the race site may have thousands of others searching endlessly to find their mug on the race websites and social media. So the message gets out there far and wide that vegans get plenty of protein, energy, stamina, and recovery to do it all over again. It’s just that simple.
This may be the most long-winded excuse to say why I haven’t been blogging, oh, I don’t know, in years! But more and more peeps say I should revisit it, and that I should use that ability to crank out words like a never-ending oil spill in the nearby Gulf of Mexico. And it is because I care about the environment and the legacy that we are leaving to the next generation that motivates me to do one more thing, if possible, to try to bring as many people to the vegan table before it is too late. Some say it already is. If you’re a student of science, it’s hard to look at all the “facts” out there and put on a happy face. But I have three daughters. And even if you don’t have children (which may be a really good thing considering what the next generation is going to have to do to deal with the train wreck heading their way), doing the right thing is so important.
Have You Been Called a Cult Member?
While my family of origin thought I was a cult member/black sheep for my healthy lifestyle choices, especially the vegan part of it, I have four cousins who have gone vegan after I got woke. They grew up seeing the same preventable suffering in our family…the breast cancer that struck my mom, aunt and both sisters (we became part of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene studies), and the heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimers that got them too. Some had all of those diseases and more! As the youngest in my family, I was deprived of their closeness from their medical absences, but had a lifetime to figure out what I didn’t want to suffer from, to the extent I could control it.
I have long chats with one of my dear cousins who went vegan and has been a close friend since childhood. During his trips from hundreds of miles away to our home, we talked till all hours of the night when we were kids. There was no social media back then, but to this day, it’s almost never a short convo when talk about the issues of the day. He has reminded me that we come from a family where money was not at all important but sticking to core values, ethics and morals was key. While our relatives were so sick, so much so that my cousin’s father dropped dead of a heart attack at 57, many of them spent their adult lives in public service and volunteer work, despite a rich and active family and business life. They supported each other and we all had plenty of time to see that living life with passion and purpose creates no finer paycheck.
The Time is Now
If you haven’t already, I hope that you find your passion and purpose especially as it relates to answering that elusive reason for living. The animals and the planet need us more than ever. Figuring out how you serve that purpose as an activist in your own way and enjoy what life has to offer in the meantime, despite the mayhem around us, remains the challenge of our lives.
I’ll close with asking your forgiveness for not blogging. I have close to two dozen social media pages I admin between Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, Twitter and my website. Blogging, like meditation (doing the latter these days to try to reduce my stress levels) are now enjoying a comeback in my life, and I promise to do better.
Let me know what you think, and any topics or questions you’d like me to explore. I haven’t lost my reporter’s righteous indignation and investigative prowess. My books have allowed me to put that University of Missouri School of Journalism degree to good use. It is indeed, a degree that keeps on giving. Many of us graduates, after spending decades in TV news, feared life beyond the glamour and lights of newsrooms. But I work harder and enjoy this “work” now, more than ever did then. And getting 2 Emmys and watching some crooks go to jail after my stories was pretty rewarding.
The animals can’t offer their thanks. But part of maturity is recognizing you don’t need an award or even a pat on the back to know that you are part of the solution and making a difference. Go for it!