The Day I Stopped Eating Potatoes

I grew up primarily in southwestern Pennsylvania and like many families in the area, potatoes were a big part of family meals, especially dinners. I never particularly cared for potatoes but in my house you ate what you were served.
 
Mashed, scalloped, twice baked, you name it, we had it. Every meal. Sometimes we had french fries or hash browns or tator tots. Or another, lesser known variety, the crispy crown. It was a lot of potatoes. With all of those variations of potatoes you would think I would have found one that I liked. I didn’t.
 
I don’t like potatoes.
 
I don’t even really like potato chips very much.
 
I know it’s almost unheard of and it is decidedly un-American but I can’t help it, I just don’t like them. And I’ve eaten enough potatoes in my life to be able to make that declaration with confidence.
 
I distinctly remember the day I stopped eating potatoes. I was home from college for the weekend and my mother made dinner. I sat down and loaded up my plate with vegetables then reached for the mashed potatoes. It had become habit for me to take a small amount of potatoes and choke them down out of expectation.
 
That day though, I had an “a-ha” moment. I was 18. I had moved out of the house. I was an adult and I could eat whatever I wanted.
 
And I didn’t want potatoes.
 
In a coming of age moment of triumph I put down the serving spoon and announced, “I’m 18 and I don’t like potatoes so I’m not having any.”
 
That moment was a long time and I haven’t eaten too many potatoes since. If you want me to eat a potato your best bet is to serve me a french fry dipped in ranch dressing or a crispy, seasoned curly fry. Or layer a potato with so much cheese and sour cream I don’t even know there is potato mixed in.
 
This post really isn’t about potatoes. It’s about knowing yourself, taking charge of your life, and making the decisions that are right for you.
 
If that means you declare your independence one night at dinner over a vat of mashed potatoes, then so be it.
 
You be you. Love yourself. Choose yourself. Be true to yourself. Potatoes are optional.
 

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17 Comments on "The Day I Stopped Eating Potatoes"

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Charlotte

I love this so much…even though I have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that you have given up potatoes cold turkey. Ha! I kid. You’re absolutely right—it is about independence and saying no to things that don’t bring you any joy. In related news, Bryan and I went grocery shopping yesterday and I asked him to pick up a bag of potatoes. They rang up at $10!!! They were mini potatoes from Holland but it’s not like they were laced in gold?! Lol

Beth

LOL I love potatoes, but I totally understand where you’re coming from with this! I finally told my mom I didn’t care for the way she made pancakes when I was about 18 as well. There is definitely something about coming of age and finding your own way and yes, potatoes (or pancakes in my case) are optional!

Erinn

FIRE! This story made me laugh out loud. And I feel the same way about ketchup!

ShootingStarsMag

Potatoes are optional – I love it! And it’s so true; you should stand up for yourself and put your foot down on things you don’t want to do! I wish I didn’t like potatoes because they aren’t good for you!!

-Lauren

San

I get the whole premise of this (and love it), but I need to declare: I’ll never give up potatoes LOL

Shann Eva

Ha! I love this! I think my biggest revolution was learning that I could say “no” to doing things that I did’t want to do. If I want to stay at home, instead of going to a party, then I’m going to do it, darn it. It took me a long time to be more assertive, but it feels so good. However, I do love me some french fries 😉

Akaleistar

I love potatoes, but I get that moment about recognizing that you are in charge of your life and can make your own decisions 🙂

Sheryl

There are so many things in our life that we do simply because it has been expected of us (like eat potatoes). The truth is, we do so many things because of expectation. Knowing yourself allows you independence and freedom. Of course, it can be scary. PS: I was never really crazy about potatoes until I could know longer eat gluten. French fries are my weakness.

Kim @ The ReInVintaged Life

Say what? I can’t even wrap my head around not liking potatoes! They’re my favorite food, and I love them (almost) any way you can serve them. What I can’t stand are tomatoes. HATE them. I get strange looks when I say that. I wish I loved tomatoes, though, because they are allowed on any healthy eating plan, and it’s potatoes Yet, it’s potatoes that are no-nos.

Cara
My family laughs so hard at me whenever I make these pronouncements because I say them as though I expect pushback and there never is. They are always fine with whatever seemingly huge (or actually huge) announcement I make. Or if they aren’t, they recognize it’s not their place and they keep it to themselves. Every time I think of my family’s respect for my views and own life, I think of the conversation I had the day after I married my (current and only) husband. My mom, over a glass (or more) of wine at a family function said:… Read more »
Anthea

Love this post!
I’ve also had a-ha moments when I realise that I don’t need to do something just because it is expected of me. I can say no. It took a while and I’m tempted to do a post about it but I need to give it a lot of thought beforehand.

Marina

I have to say – I am really jealous you don’t like potatoes.. I love them and I could eat them with every meal.

Divya

Whoa, I WISH I could not like potatoes. But, you know what? Maybe I don’t. I think this whole dieting-since-I-was-12 thing has made me confused about what it is that I truly like or dislike. So, check back in with me in a few months after I spend some more mindful moments with my breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I’ll let you know if potatoes made the cut. And, like you, I will hopefully feel confident enough to proclaim what I WILL or will NOT be eating. <3

Coral
I really really love this. Everything about it. I love the way you write and how you tell stories. I knew right away that this story wasn’t simply about potatoes because every post you write has such deep meaning. This is exactly what I needed to hear right now because I still struggle to declare my independence and my own choices about many things to my family, even though I’m 24. But the truth is that I can and should be strong enough to declare that I don’t like something. Thank you so much for writing this and for keeping… Read more »
Amanda

haha I’m glad you managed to be true to yourself, this is an unconventional yet brilliant way of illustrating that!

Denise H

Potatoes are a staple of the Irish dinner too so I understand your feelings. Haha I don’t mind eating them but I would definitely choose fries over them. However, what I love about this post is how the potatoes represent change and decision making. Very clever!

Tobia | craftaliciousme

I am the total opposite. I would eat potatoes anytime. And while I consider myself very unpretentious when it comes to eating habits there are some things I just really don’t care for. One people never understand is Pizza. I maybe have it once a year and then I am done with it.
Happy Sunday, Tobia