By Archer Dodson, MUN
Today is the third day of the Live Below the Line challenge, and now we are more than halfway through it. At the start of the week, I envisioned myself eating a mixture of grain, rice, and beans every day accompanied by an assortment of vegetables and fruit, but my stomach has not adapted very well to the different diet, and I felt extremely ill for many hours in the morning today. I managed to eat some rice in the afternoon when I was feeling better and had rice and onion for my dinner along a decent amount of produce. Although I still like all of the foods I have bought, I am only eating very plain combinations, so I don’t upset my stomach again. Feeling terrible and not being able to eat anything that would help with it made me better understand the situation that many people actually live in. When you spend all your money on cheap carbohydrates, and something goes wrong, there is nothing you can do about it. The amount of nutrition I am getting is also minimal, and it is only going to get worse as most of my produce has gone bad or is going bad currently. If I were ever to do this challenge again, I would certainly do things differently as I bought way too much food. If I focused more on nutrition and knew exactly how many carbs and other nutrients, I would need I think I would feel a lot better, but many people don’t even have that option and can’t focus on nutrition at all. At the start of the challenge, I was feeling very optimistic, but that feeling quickly faded as the days progressed. I think that today may have been the worst day for me as I was feeling horrible, but now that it is the evening of Wednesday, I have started to feel a lot less hungry and I have gotten accustomed to my options. I think that I am only going to be able to get through the challenge because of the knowledge that it will end. If I was in a position where this was daily life, and I had to continue with this for a much more extended period, I am not sure that I would be able to manage. This challenge has made me understand the situation of many people a lot more thoroughly, and my empathy for individuals currently living like this has gone up tremendously.