Darfur Fast for Life

We fast in solidarity with the hungry and starving in Darfur and for lasting peace in Sudan
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Share your own fasting experience here

April 21, 2009 By: Admin Category: Share fasting experience

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For those fasting in solidarity with the people of Darfur, we encourage you to share your experience here by leaving comments.

86 Comments to “Share your own fasting experience here”


  1. Many people from all walks of life are joining in. We would like to hear about your experience, please leave comments here:

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  2. Today, two of my daughters and I will begin this fast. On Thursday, we purchased the items required for the 15 days we’ve pledged to fast on refugee rations only (or only water on Fridays). We got home and sampled the wheat cereal prepared without any additives. It was bland, but not objectionable. We divided the portions into thirds for each of us to have our share. Although I usually eat a light breakfast, I plan to eat my first rationed meal in the early afternoon.

    Last week we shared information about this fast with two locally resettled Sudanese refugees (one from Darfur and the other Southern Sudan). They appreciated this effort for Darfur, and one remarked this “was very good.” As a Muslim, she understands the practice of fasting. As a refugee since 2003 (three years in a Ghana refugee camp) she’s suffered severe hunger and malnutrition. I will not know that pain from this brief experience, but I hope our collective actions in this fast will bring greater awareness to the dire circumstances the Darfuris face if humanitarian aid is not quickly returned to the camps.

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  3. Lisa, as always, you and your family are the perfect model of what others across the country and around the world can do. I am inspired by your commitment. Please give a big hug to your daughters.

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  4. I’m starting my water fast tomorrow. I’ve fasted before on only juice for 5 days. It was not easy at first, but after you move beyond the initial hunger pains, you begin to feel more energy. This, I’m told, is because your body is detoxing and using less energy on digestion. I share this for first time fasters. However, I also do so with a heavy heart, because it is we who have a choice to fast or not, we who can visit the camps and then come home again, we who can decide if we pay attention to what is happening in Darfur or turn our heads. I am thinking of my friend Adam in Kounoungo Camp and the five years he has lived there on refugee rations. I am wondering what it will take to end the violence. I thank the courage of those who are leading this fast. And I invite everyone participating to also take 5 – 10 minutes each morning (when you might have been having breakfast) to meditate on a vision of peace, sending your energy to those in need.

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  5. I completed my water only fast today and used hunger as a tool for remembrance, prayer, and intentionality. In reading through the site here, just found myself crying. And thinking of some of those in the camps too sick or traumatized to cry. And the ones who never made it to the camps. . . . yet, I am hopeful . . . for what is still possible. Never again. Never now.
    John

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  6. Emily Goldner says:

    I fasted on refugee rations today… eating small amounts throughout the afternoon. It was all very bland and tasteless, which makes me realize just how much salt, sugar, and other flavoring we eat every day here in America. Since both my mom and I were fasting today, we prepared our food together. Our portions combined looked like barely enough for one person, for one meal!

    It certainly made me think – eating this (or less!) every day for several years would be unthinkable to those who live here in America, as even our poor and homeless can usually scrape together more than a thousand calories per day. It is hard to imagine that about 4.7 million human beings subsist on what I ate today, but they do. And until the world pays more attention to and takes action for the people of Darfur, they will continue to do so. And I will continue my activism until those living in the camps in Chad and in IDP camps in Sudan know peace.
    Emily

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  7. Thank you, everyone. It is so inspiring to see this response. It is so great to see a community come together and becoming one with another community that is half-way around the world.

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  8. Peter Mursak says:

    When one feels empty, true compassion and love fulfills.

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  9. Najam Haq says:

    Beginning second day water only. Hunger comes in pangs that last about 15-20 minutes. About 3-4 times in the day, then subsides, leaving a sort of quiet inexplicable contentment in its place. It woke me up around 2:00 am, after which I couldn’t go back to sleep for several hours. Now a headache is refusing to relinquish its grip. Probably sleep related. Or maybe I am not drinking enough water. Or maybe it is the coffee that I didn’t have. Don’t want to take analgesics on an empty stomach, so I’ll just ride it out.

    But I am confident I’ll be okay. I think I can go the full 35 days, no problem. Things may get a little annoying, maybe even a little painful, but I know I can quit any time. I am all grown up, I don’t have any more physical growing to do. I probably won’t lose anything permanent. Not over the number of days I am committed to fasting. I also have fat stored in my body from having lived in relative abundance for years. I can live on that for a while. And if things get too bad and out of control, we’ve got good hospitals around. I know I’ll be all right.

    The children of Darfur aren’t so fortunate. Malnourishment at early age leaves permanent marks. Physical. Psychological. When and if a child survives a world that is so thoroughly un-nourishing, how will this child look upon that world as an adult? Today my thoughts go out to the children of Darfur. They deserve better. I hope they get that before it is too late (for them and for us).

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  10. Kara Hernandez says:

    I didn’t realize how tired these refugees are. I have been studying for finals and I feel so sluggish. If I feel faint I eat some matzo bread.

    I don’t know how the UN can think a person can live off 1100 calories. Especially since they are giving less than that for an entire family. The mothers of Darfur are what keep me going.

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  11. Choice.
    I have a choice.
    They do not have a choice.
    My heart breaks with sadness.
    I offer my hunger and tears as
    a sacrifice. I pray.
    Day 2.

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  12. (sent to me by a dear dear friend who is fasting with me-posted with permission)

    I started the refugee rations fast to support an old friend but it’s effected me more deeply than I thought it would. I was on the fast website reading about refugees when I clicked on a picture /story of Leila. Every time I look at the picture it makes my eyes well up. With all she lives with- hunger and fear and things no human should ever go thru she still has a bright sparkle in her eyes- Maybe its hope or faith or an inner strength that if she survives will make her a leader for change. But will she get that chance? Don’t even know if she is still alive.

    I am doing the refugee rations gluten free. I eat a cup of white rice 3x a day. I could not find gluten free split peas (cross contamination in storage) so I alternate a table spoon of sunflower seed butter or half or less cup of canned red beans. I will switch to lentils when those run out. I have the daily calories to 1025.This includes a cup of coffee and one of black tea.

    I am sure there are those who don’t consider this close enough to what the refugees are eating. it is what I can do. I got on the scale this morning and weighed 194.5. When I started 6 days ago I was 203.5. My son was 9.5 lb when he was born. I am guessing a child born in the refugee camps is not even half that weight at birth. I am sure very few survive. I wonder in the past 6 days how many children have died.

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  13. Finished second day of refugee rations, and am humbled by the strength of the refugees.

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  14. Najam Haq says:

    Day 2, water only, completed. Feeling weakness setting in. The perpetual headache lingers on. Experiencing moderate difficulty in getting up and moving around. I will probably feel better tomorrow, when Ketosis might set in (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fasting). That is when the body, essentially, begins to consume itself.

    Caught myself counting the days left. Already. Thought to myself, the starving millions of Darfur may also be counting the days, but from the other direction with no end in sight.

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  15. last night was the absolute worse night. i definitely felt weak. I kept thinking what a horrible feeling that has to be not knowing where your next meal would be coming from. boy, you just don’t really understand until you are there. and all you think about is food.
    your mind is consumed with it. i wondered if the refugees even think about it anymore, maybe it’s just me, I am weak. Even with the refugee rations I don’t know how these poor people walk around. It is just so incredibly sad and unnecessary. I thought about how the people responsible for it can sleep at night?
    How?

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  16. Stephen & Alysha says:

    Day three, has been more difficult for my wife and I as weakness, headaches have set in. Even more we are less inclined, or lack the motivation to effectively communicate. Further, my wife and I have major mood swings as a result of our fasting. A continuous cloud hangs over us as we try to stay focused on family, work and school. Also, with the smallest child growing we are constantly feeding him, and it plays havoc on the hunger meter.

    Realizing that food is so close, makes it difficult to sustain will power, but one thing that has worked well for my wife and I during this fast, is that we hold each other up during the hardest times. I do have to admit that this is more difficult than I ever thought. The ability to function is difficult, but my wife has stipulated that her mind and spirit are in Darfur. That is the purpose…and has helped us to sustain.

    The camps and displaced have been our constant conversation, the questions that continue to arise about awareness, support, voices… The never ending why/how questions….

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  17. Emily Goldner says:

    Fasted on rations again today. It was harder this time – the experience was not so novel anymore, plus we had just bought groceries into the house. I had to distract myself all day, but strangely enough I could barely bring myself to eat the bread I had made out of the cracked wheat. I’ll have to try some other way of preparing it.

    Even though I was hungry, I reminded myself of why I was fasting, and got through OK. Because whenever I thought I was hungry, I remembered that millions live on this food day in and day out for years on end – without “off” days or the ability to have something else if they wish.

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  18. Najam Haq says:

    Half way through day 4 of water only. I am definitely in ketosis mode, where the body is basically “eating” its fat. Hunger has pretty much disappeared. Weird taste in the mouth, breath smells bad (a side effect of ketosis). Insomnia seems to be a symptom also (it wasn’t the last time I did this, so that may be peculiar to my biochemistry, or may be a function of age). But my energy level is up, I feel focused, everything feels sharp. This is the brain living on ketones instead of glucose.

    This “high” state is strictly temporary. It will only last as long as body’s fat supply lasts. The length of this stage varies for different people of course. It is a function of ones health condition, and how long one has lived in relative abundance, eating more than what the body needs, accumulating fat. A few weeks at most. Once the fat begins to run out intense recurring hunger pangs will return. That is the body saying “find some food, or you will die.” At this point the body will begin to consume muscles and other tissues. Long term damage will begin to occur. And death will eventually follow if food isn’t made available soon.

    If you notice from the pictures in circulation the refugees from Darfur aren’t exactly brimming with fat on their bodies. Even before this calamity hit them, in the best of times, they lived on subsistence level farming. They don’t have very much fat stored in their bodies. They are much closer to the final stages of starvation than we are likely to be here. Then there are the children, to whom an entirely different equation applies. They can’t afford to “fast” for even a few days. To starve for a few weeks even less. There is an emergency here the seriousness of which can barely be comprehended.

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  19. Stephen & Alysha says:

    Couragous, Strong, Empathy, that adjectives are ongoing……There is no way in which I will ever truly understand, but in saying this I have a glimpse, a connection – howevver small. I am sick and I am hungry but I have a home, freedoms and an end…….I watch my husbands moods level and spike and it is continuous, he is hungry and he wonders how; it hurts my heart…..and yet this is not my child. I watch him -my son- eat, run, play and learn and wonder how the mothers in Darfur sustain a strength I could never know, watching their own children suffer. I am constantly asked why, who, what, where and I wonder how they answer the same questions when asked. My beautiful son “Mama we have to do something”, how does a six year old understand this and our leaders do not? I watch the videos, and all I see is hope, fearlessness and again, again strength amazing strength. I feel a connection to this community, the other fasters help to give me strength and courage, when right now I am sick and want to stop. The refugee’s give me tremendous reason, these beautiful people and their ability to give, smile and see hope. I am commited, connected and will not accept inaction, that is not a possibility. The questions that are ongoing in my head the faces that I see when I am hungry, they give the strength to continue….

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  20. I’m on day 4 of the fast. I am not at all persuaded that there is any other choice than but to do this. I’m blogging daily at http://victoriatrabosh.com/blog I also welcome your comments, your feedback, your resources. Fasting in community, even a virtual one, makes a difference. Thanks for the great information you place on this site that I can refer to in my blog.

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  21. Irene Barrett says:

    This is my day #3 on distilled water only. I felt dizzy, I have seen those cute tiny stars that fly arround, and seem like golden. It lasted just for a moment. Yoga helps. Maybe you wonderful people want to share what helps you go through the day of fasting when you feel funny, dizzy, hungry. In my mind, I think positive, I don’t watch comercials on food, no pictures or thoughts of comfort food, and I surround myself with the people who believe in me. When I feed my family, I think of it like a mother over there, she probably gives up on her portion of meel sometimes, so that her kids can have it.

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  22. Mia and others fasting, you have motivated so many with your videos, news interview, and comments. It is great to see increased numbers of blogs and twitter activity about this fast and support for those suffering from this genocide. I hope the participation and attention will grow as the fast continues. Mia, I’m glad you’re doctor’s checking in on you, and hope everyone’s being cautious with any extended fasting. Although this is my third day of fasting, I’m alternating days with “rations only” Mondays and Wednesdays and “water only” Fridays. The other days I have one lighter meal, finding I’m not as hungry. Also, keeping busy with other activities, and staying focused on global news and daily actions for Darfur, helps me pass the time without dwelling on my state of fasting.

    Those in the camps cannot count on such breaks or distractions from their persistent hunger. The Darfuris who are resettled here in San Antonio, told me their monthly rations in the refugee camp were never enough, often just one meal a day. One of the young children who had spent three years in a Ghana refugee camp, heard me reading some news about “malnutrition,” and gravely said, “I had that.” His mother said she would on rare occasion get a little fish others brought in from the outside market. I can’t imagine it went far with the five little mouths she had to feed. Blessings to all who hunger and those who are fasting in solidarity with them.

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  23. Stephen & Alysha says:

    It seems there was a change that happened last night………I am no longer consumed with hunger and thoughts of food, those have been replaced by hunger for knowledge and action. I am quiet today, a place of compassion……I want to act, I sent texts to Clinton, I sent press releases I am emailing my team mates, restuarants, FB…..but I am quiet, listening….I have read and been inspired by every blog, comment, story and experience. I feel connected to Darfuri’s, I feel as connected as if I were touching them. This will forever change me for the better, I will NEVER FORGET, I will forever be grateful for Mia’s bravity, courage, experience, and self sacrifice. I will forever be grateful to SGN for giving me the opportunity to push myself and my family, for helping me to empower and educate others. Yesterday I was unsure if I could follow through with my three weeks, today I know I will extend. today I will act, my son will act, my husband will act, tomorrow we will act and again and again. I am responsible for the Darfuri as a fellow human, how can I not acknowledge our interconnectedness, how could I sit and eat my dinner knowing that while doing so others are dying, sickness is spreading, starving children are in agony. I will act, educate and empower others to do the same. I WILL NOT QUIT….

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  24. Barbara Tasco says:

    This is my third and final day with water only. That was my commitment, however I will fast one day a week from now on.

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  25. Completed my commitment of one day on water and four on camp rations. I broke fast tonight with a pear, the best I ever tasted.

    I was hungry.
    I was hungry. No, still understand nothing of true hunger. A refrigerator full of food has been around the corner all week. My brother hungers.
    I slept. In a bed. In a secure home. No worries of soldiers with guns or gunships with bombs. My sister sleeps not.
    I dreamt. Free from nightmares of violence, images of war. My brother dreams of a home, a village in ashes, a brother lost.
    I had the luxury to work. My sister earns no wage and has no choice of work.
    I talked with blood relatives by phone. I know exactly where they are. My brother knows the lingering silence following separation by violent death and forced dispersion. He longs to know where his aunts and uncles and cousins are, if they live, if they are safe.
    None of my daughters went hungry today. None made the choice of whether to risk rape to gather firewood. My sister makes impossible choices.
    Yet sure and certain hope endures. The laughter of a child is one language. Love is indistinguishable.
    Never again. Never now.

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  26. Stephen & Alysha says:

    I am feeling hopeful today, I am watching people talk, ask and learn all around me. I am watching my calendar begin to fill with people wanting to educate themselves and I am watching the blogs, comments and the beautiful connections grow. I am hopeful that we will make a difference, I know that we will change things, I know that we will continue to educate, empower and act for those that need our voice. I am hopeful that as we continue to grow as a community and connect that we will succeed I am hopeful that all of us will not stop trying, empowering and educateing until we see change. We are committed to changing the status quo…….Thank you Mia, Thank you Gabriel/KTJ, Thank you John for leading and inspiring our community and beginning the change.

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  27. Today is day 3 of my water fast. I am craving everything, even food that I wouldn’t normally eat. I realize that these are detox symptoms and that my body doesn’t really need these foods. Last night at work, everyone around me ordered food. I though about how unhealthy most of these foods were, but my mind kept going back to how the people in the refugee camps would feel to recieve a hot meal. We have so many options when it comes to what we eat, we can choose to eat healthy, or to eat comfort foods. What do the refugees and victims of the conflict find comfort in? I often hear people in Canada say “I will feel much better after a nice meal at my favorite restaurant”, and I wonder why the people of Darfur are deprived of the chance to eat food that makes them happy. I contemplated eating a chocolate chip cookie last night, and then thought to myself “I wonder how a child from the camps would feel to have a chocolate chip cookie, just like kids from developed countries can”. It’s a wonder what we take for granted. So I am finding inspiration in thinking about the Organic Raw Food I will order after I have finished my fast. I believe that the Raw Vegan Diet is the healthiest way of eating on the planet, and I want to share this knowledge. I contacted my friend and asked if his Fruit Tree Planting Foundation is willing to plant trees in Chad. I will pray and take action to make sure I can help these wonderful people who are suffering unjustly. They are waiting for us to help them, and I am thankful that there are so many of us fasting in solidarity with those who have no choice, and that we can work towards making a difference.

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  28. Day #5 on distilled water. Fasting is testing everything you stand for. It is not my feeling of hunger or weekness in legs that are annoying me. I became angry as the fast goes on. I look at all those beautiful kids from your pictures and videos. I am questioning more. Why is this happening? I am Christian, and my best friend is a Muslim. We cry together. This is not what my God or her Allah wants. What can be done right now? There are water sources in Chad, can water tank trucks bring some water to the camps? There must be water well drills on the ground somewhere in Chad right now, can it be rented so some new water wells can be drilled not far away from the refugees? Why people depend on aid, all they need is safe drinking water and there could be an Oasis of Grace. Nanga Kaye, at University of Nebraska Lincoln initiated the project Oasis of Grace, on susutainable agriculture in her homeland, Chad. It is possible to claim the desert. What would it take for refugees to become self sustainable?

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  29. Day 4 of my water fast now. I’m doing really well on it, my mind is off food now and I’m thinking about how fortunate I am to have as much water available as I need. I bought 15 4litre bottles of distilled water the other day, and had to carry them to my house from the parking lot. The two blocks were difficult, I made four trips back and forth, I can’t even imagine having to walk for hours to find water. How can we help make safe drinking water available in the refugee camps? I want to get involved. If anyone from fastdarfur.org (Mia, Gabriel, Gretchen)reads this and has volunteer or work opportunities please email me at info@globalwatchdogproductions.com I want to go to Chad to visit the refugees and bring whatever I can…….some of my ideas are solar cookers, fruit tree planting, drilling water wells. I want to do more. My fast is raising awareness among my friends and the people I come into contact with; however, I still feel that I am not doing enough to help those over in Chad and Darfur who are waiting. I hope we can all get together and take action, every step counts…fasting is the first. Where do we go from here?

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  30. In several ways, I found my “water only” fast was easier to face than the “refugee rations” days. Initially, the rations were a novelty in the challenge of finding alternative means of preparing them (grind wheat into flour for bread or boil like rice), but all results were bland. I’m not feeling too hungry this morning knowing I must, again, face the preparation of the boring grains and dried split peas for a mid-day meal. My daughter and I plan to use a solar cooker to prepare a meal, but today it’s too overcast. We can cook in comfort with a gas range, conventional oven and microwave — no dangerous, exhausting trek through the desert for firewood. Our clean water is easily accessible, we don’t have to stand in line for hours at a pump for a limited supply which must be hauled long distances in jerry cans. As we say a blessing before we eat, we will be praying for those who are sharing similar rations in conditions we can’t adequately duplicate and living with fear of the aid supplies running out.

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  31. Our family has decided to fast together this week in solidarity with people who have no choice. Our son, who is three years old, is going to participate by giving up those “extra things” that he loves so much. When he saw his parents prepare dinner for him but not eat ourselves he asked if we could give our food to the Darfuris instead.

    I told him that a lot of people are trying to do just that.

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  32. Stephen & Alysha says:

    Our experience continues to be fulfilled with compasion for the Darfur people enduring this life situation. My wife and I find ourselves engaging more and more into creating awareness for Darfur people, and expanding our comittment to helping, and promoting help. The emotional state of mind is not about the physical impact any longer, it is about the attachment that has been cultivated to be a provider of fundamental survival for all humanity. Our bodies adapt, but it does not take away the emotional suffering associated with this process. We have a much deeper passion after this experience for recognition of the Darfur people, and what they may be encountering. However, we can never experience it as they have or do. The most important aspect of this fast, it to create more awareness not only personally, but societial, and maybe then action will occur, for the Darfur people.

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  33. Marissa Jillian McClung says:

    so today has been day one I’m doing refugee rations but only had the cracked wheat so far… its 5pm. i noticed i forgot to email where i live lol, im in los angeles CA. I hope this gets the message through today i texted Mrs. Clinton and emailed President Obama, I’m working on a hand written letter right now. hope everyone else is still going strong, tomorrows day two for me, im going one week. I hope we can get aid back to the people of Darfur.

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  34. Day #8 on water. I want to be in control of myself, I am irritable and frustrated in my own bubble, I take a deep breaths so I can be calm with my daughter and grandson. I watch your videos on Darfur, I am outraged, I cry, I want to do something right now, I want to go to Chad and volunteer, I am on raw vegan food, I don’t need much, I would manage to be humble. I am not tempted by my feelings of hunger now, I am tempted by my thoughts of missed opportunities that are asking for comfort food. We are dealing with the pandemic of violence in our own way here in Ottawa, Canada. Together with great team, I am contributing as Artistic Director in Love Doesn’t Hurt theatre event on May 15th. I wonder what is happening with this beautiful planet, what makes human beings capable of commiting acts of violence of any kind against innocent and helpless, and why is it allowed to go on. Thank you Mia for bringing together the comunity of compassionate people, this has to get somewhere, so many outraged people that fast for Darfur will do something good.

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  35. Athalia Cailloux says:

    It is only the end of my first day of water only fast and I already got fainting spells.
    Now I can open my cupboard or go to the supermarket but if I was among Darfur refugees I wouldn’t be able to do that. I would have to try to live as if I had the strengh to do my daily chores even if I faint.

    I will give the water only fast another try when I have a day during which I won’t have to go to classes and be totally conscious and ready to learn (I have my exams soon).

    I really feel for the refugees and I will try to get things done on my modest capabilities.

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  36. This is day 10 for me of a “liquids only” fast. That means I add some maple syrup to my water with lemon juice (about 400 cal). I’m also drinking a cup of water with 1/2 tsp. of sea salt. I’m feeling good. Not tired. (certainly get the desire for food sometimes!) but can’t afford to be down. I work full time. amazing how much is possible on so little. I’ve fasted before for 17 days so feel I can do this unless something is clearly going on in my body that speaks to me (so to speak!)

    I fast for Darfur because I must. I work in Rwanda and see the aftermath of a genocide left unchecked. WHEN this ends in the Sudan, there will be massive clean-up of human lives, PTS Syndrome, a shattered economy and a people wondering why we didn’t do more: to save their parents, their loved ones, themselves. So we must do more. And I stand in solidarity with those who believe this non violent protest makes a difference.

    It’s lonely doing this. And so I stand with countless strangers and truly believe this is important. Blog about this issue – and send me links of your blog so I can continue to get out the message. thanks, http://victoriatrabosh.com/blog

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  37. Liz Palmer says:

    Today I fasted rations only. I will do this for 4 days a week. I regret that I cannot commit to more, but have real life commitments that cannot be compromised. I hope that in spite of this, I have added some weight to this peaceful protest. I hope to inspire others, just as you have all inspired me. I think, looking at the calender, that I am one of the first to fast in the UK. I hope this changes. Soon. THe time has come to say ‘enough’, and to take action. I cannot stand by and do nothing.

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  38. Mia and Mohammed inspired us all in their segment on Larry King Live, last night. If only the reports we hear coming from camps within Darfur could be amplified into the WH and to other world leaders. We will continue our fast to call attention to those waiting in dire conditions for the global community to respond. Today, we said prayers, sent text messages, made phone calls, sent faxes and many tweets today on behalf of the people of Darfur. We finished up another day of refugee rations, not managing to eat even the scant portions allowed as it holds so little appeal. We can’t really fathom what 6 years of this monotonous, bland diet would be like. We can manage to push away from these portions knowing food of choice lies right beyond our self-imposed fast. The displaced Darfuris have no such choice.

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  39. Today, while I’m at home and have “water only,” I’ll not be as tempted as on an earlier day of “refugee rations” when I was traveling and facing so much roadside advertising of refreshment which was much more enticing than my simple rations.

    I hope everyone is staying strong enough physically as they fast along with Mia on her humbling hunger strike. Let’s pray that the strength in our commitment is felt by all who hear about this effort, and encourages more people to take action. Days of fasting help me to focus on advocacy actions for Darfur. When we feel ourselves or others are in need of motivation, we have only to look at those this genocide’s displaced; listen to their stories. We need to sustain their hope of peace, although that is increasingly difficult with the passing years.

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  40. Hi Mia,

    Saw your interview on Larry King last week.

    It’s already day 7 for me today.

    Other HPS-online.com cleansers have been participating in my fast at our online forums.

    Wishing you guys here all the best.

    Darfur needs help, but I’m not sure fasting is the way to get more attention.. but hey, I’m ready to join in too. For years HPS-online has been calling attention to the Darfur calamity. Our latest project has been to support Stoves for Darfur at our HPS website. It’s a great project.

    1) I would be very careful about ingesting those rations while fasting… it my books it is quite detrimental to ones health.

    2) For those interested in joining Mia’s fast, I’m confident that you will find it much easier if you do juice fasting, live fresh juices, (nothing canned or with preservatives) rather than only water… water only fasting speeds up the detox processes, and if your internal organs aren’t all that strong or healthy to begin with, water only fasting will tax them considerably posing danger to your health and well being which I assume is not the purpose of Fast Darfur.

    3) Please friends, after this Fastdarfur project, lets do one for Burma’s most famous political prisoner Aung San Suu KYI.

    Can you imagine, over nine years under house arrest… just imagine YOURSELF locked up in your own home for nine years, non one can come in, you can’t go out… imagine the suffering she has endured, all because of her desire to bring *positive* change to the Burmese people. Again, put yourself in your living room, and now imagine, nine years no one is going to come in or go out… it’s a most horrible human experience, and it makes our fasting here, seem inconsequential compared to what this women has gone through for the sake of humanity.

    Peace, love and light,

    Jos-hua

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  41. Last meal before water only fast: Big bowl of frosted mini wheat’s and a mug root beer. The fast begins in the morning. Daily updates at blog located at http://championdarfur.blogspot.com/.

    Rise,
    Corey

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  42. 6 days to go! I haven’t fasted before. This is gonna be fun!
    I just turned 18 three days ago and I thought, “Now what?”
    Thank God for Switchfoot’s tweet that led me here.
    My mom’ll be joining me next week, too. Awesome.

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  43. great idea! just started water only fasting a couple hours ago… hope i dont pass out.. cheers ;) .j.

    the chikcs will think im hot this summer…

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  44. great idea! just started water only fasting a couple hours ago… hope i dont pass out.. cheers ;) .j.

    the chicks will think im hot this summer…

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  45. so far my greatest challenge is actually remembering that im on the water only fast and not eating out of habit or just sheer stupidity.

    .j.

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  46. I am adding a dedication to my fasting. DAy one so far. My mother-in law, Wanda Howard,
    passed away a few hours ago. A loving and muched loved woman, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend-She will be missed.
    For the people of DArfur, My loss and personal suffering are nothing compared to the injustice you are enduring.
    Prayers, hopes and sending out the message to all who will listen and to all who can make a differance.
    God, grant us peace.

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  47. Beth Willow says:

    Day one of my fast, and already told quite a few people what is happening and some are interested in joining! Being so young its hard to do the rations at school, so I am more or less doing the full on fast, just water, and nibbling Ryvita when I feel like I am going to pass out. I am really beginning to appreciate the food that I normally take for granted, even simple things like an apple, or orange juice. Mia Farrow is incredible and Richard Branson, keep it up! Good luck everyone!

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  48. Our days of fasting continue as we act and fast in solidarity with millions of displaced Darfuris, so many who are suffering in declining conditions in refugee and IDP camps. Those with celebrity and leadership positions who’ve joined this fast are motivating many others to take action for Darfur. I hope this momentum will continue to garner the attention of our government leaders and the international community.

    In my days of fasting on water only or on refugee rations, I can adjust my schedule and limit my activities to lessen any physical discomfort. As I do so, I sombrely note that those who are barely existing in the camps, have no such option. They face harsh desert conditions and threat of beatings or rape in just meeting routine chores like gathering firewood. They do this with malnourished bodies and daily mental anguish. They hold onto hope that their global neighbors will be able to help them one day return to peaceful lives in Darfur.

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  49. Beth Willow says:

    Anyone read this?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8046516.stm

    Its my second day, and the hungr pangs and getting bad, but its totally worth it.

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  50. Anon British Soldier says:

    Clock just about to strike midnight here in the UK….water only fast about to commence until 9th June. I have fasted before but only up to a period of 4 days. I think it’s amazing how many people are participating in this, and it has a real sense of purpose! I look forward to giving my pennies worth :)

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  51. day 2, going really well. slight headaches and mild dizzyness but thats normal. better than normal actually.

    .j.

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  52. this is the third day on water, and it’s been surprisingly easy. My level of patience and peace are wonderful, considering the stress and turmoil around me the past few days. There is such a sense of God’s Presence, and that no-one can be lost, and that all are loved.

    A friend, that I have been encouraging (bugging!) to fast, called yesterday morning to tell me she was just having juice for the day. We both were realizing a little of what it must feel like for the People of Darfur, who have no choice.

    This morning as I was having to really push myself to prune and get out pails of yard waste, the concentration camps in Germany came to mind and how the prisoners had to work on extremely limited rations or be killed.

    The Love being expressed with all of us fasting is really needed in the world, and I can feel It transforming things.

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  53. Anon British Soldier says:

    Nearly end of 1st day on water fast….feel fine, plus continuing my punishing daily exercise routine, half hour of resistance training followed by a 6 mile run. Not done the exercise yet, should be interesting! will post back later with results.

    A bit of advice for those people struggling on first 3 days of fasting, it gets a lot easier after day 3…the feelings of hunger will pass, your body can quite comfortably use its own bodyfat without any ill effects. I myself have been away on Military operations and not eaten for a couple of days, whilst undertaking intense physical activity. people in a normal state of health can live comfortably on your own fat stores, as human’s we are physiologically set up for this ‘famine’ response. Plus as most people have fat stores to spare a little discomfort is nothing compared to the people of Darfur, as they don’t have the fat stored to spare, there bodies are in an instant catabolic state, where the body is forced to utilize valuable muscle tissue. Think about this when you feel you need to break your fast…..stay strong everyone!

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  54. Im on day 3 of the fast, so far the easiest day… feel great, using my hunger to motivate me to persuade the political leaders here in canada as much as i can to put more resources into peace keeping missions in Sudan.

    DO IT!
    .j.

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  55. I’d water only for two days. Physically kept the normal routine, but felt so many unusual feelings. More collected, sensitive, emotional, and all so thankful.
    The experience was rumbling. So thankful for the awareness, it awake my soul & my heart.
    Today I ate my first meal again, someone asked me if I had done anything exciting, my answer was Yes, I ate!
    Thank you every one that is participating in the Fast for life in Darfur.

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  56. Gabriel asked me to share about my fastexperience
    - its the 3d week – I join since 27. April.

    When I read about Mia Farrows hunger strike it gave me a kick to connect
    with this campaign because of the suffering in Darfur is going on now for years –
    and its no more on the headlines. I wanted to join these 21 days but decided going on from day to day because I had to care about health and look how it feels.

    Being a musician my life is very aktive – teaching piano- and celloplaying
    (childs and young people), conducting choirs, concerts etc. (www.chor-levantate.de).
    The first week when weakness and eating fantasies attacked me I just had to wait
    and try to relax. Drinking lots of water, tea and also juice – going into nature,
    some sport-activities and meditiations supported me to make the fastprocess more light.

    During the 2nd week the temperature here in Germany was a problem:
    Again we had some days with 5 -10 Grad/Celcius – for me feeling very cold –
    but moving outside, the colours of spring and the awakening of trees and flowers
    brougt me back into feelings of tanksfullness. “We dont live only by meal – we are living because of love, light and acting together in this sense”.

    The best support for my mind is the conciousness being together in this comunity
    from so many countries. During the last years personally I had different fasting experiences – always a deep cleaning and refreshing for mind, body and soul (“Heilfasten”) – seriously done this process gives more energy, physically and spiritually.

    But this time its for me fhe first time to share this process with so many people
    round the world as a sign for human rights. We all know that fasting is a process completely different from the suffering in Darfur. We have a choice, our life background is secure and we are not forced into hunger by the circumstances.

    Even my contribution is only a small gesture
    I wish that this campaign could help to bring awareness to this region of our world.
    To bring help and a positive change to the people in Sudan
    were death and hunger is a daily reality.

    Thanks to all of You who have initiated this campaign -
    power and strength to all who join.

    Love and light
    Hartmut Mayer

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  57. It is great to see the so many joining in the fast through their participation, prayers, and supportive comments. Reading more about organizations involved in fighting world hunger, and visiting web sites focusing on the refugees has helped me stay focused on my days of fasting.

    I must confess I have no enthusiasm for preparing or eating the refugee rations – it’s become just a chore. My days of fasting “water only” are simpler, but I do tend to be ready to eat something light when I break that day of fasting. Keeping myself away from alternative food resources makes the fast easier, as my mind’s not focused on what I’m not allowed. Although, I have managed to handle the family’s grocery shopping and a major cleaning of the refrigerator without too much trouble. Those in my family who aren’t fasting have thoughtfully tried to eat their meals when those of us fasting aren’t present. I think that sharing the fast with others has helped my commitment. Oddly, I don’t find myself with much of an appetite on my non-fasting days, especially if I keep busy, or I find my thoughts drifting back to scenes of those in the camps.

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  58. I am fasting, praying and visioning for proctection, good food, good housing, good medical assistance and peace for the men, women and children of Darfur.

    So it is!! NOW!!

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  59. On Day 1 of my water only fast. Every time I even think of food, a face of a malnourished child pops into my head and the feeling of hunger vanishes. The apathy of the human race must end now. When explained to fellow students at my high school, no one seemed to really grasp the concept of this fast. I fast for the people of Darfur. They don’t have a choice.

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  60. OK at 88 hours im gonna call it off… feeling light headed, and not in a good way.
    GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!!!

    peace
    .j.

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  61. Day 2 of fast.
    Im having a hard time today, a lot of lightheadedness, irritability, and overall bad feeling. But I have to keep going, because the people of Darfur keep going. Peace to Darfur.

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  62. I’m on Day 2 of my fast as well, and I’m feeling the lightheadedness as well.

    It’s not easy, but it’s nothing compared to what the people of Darfur are suffering.

    I’m blogging about my fasting experience at: http://burnoutbrightly.wordpress.com/tag/darfur/

    Comments and readers are more than welcome! =)

    Peace and love.

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  63. fingley nyanhira says:

    Greetings,Awesome,how interesting.came across this advert on cnn. and i am gonna fast till friday for the peace of Darfur.Smashing gonna have fun.
    to the peace of darfur

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  64. am on Day 1 of my fast.am praying without ceasing for the people of Darfur.I feel very sick this morning maybe because i slept directly under the fan last night.i need a lot of rest and i pray i will be okay by tommorrow in Jesus name.I am not relenting and no going back

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  65. Tomorrow many of us in Redding (10 signed up) will be fasting in solidarity with the people of Darfur, especially those in Camp Kounoungo and in honor of Mia Farrow. We just finished hanging “Exhibit Darfur,” which features 8 of her wonderful photographs, in the Redding City Hall. This will be my fourth week–one day a week–of participation. I will continue to fast one day a week as long as the Darfur Fast for Life continues and will work to get others to join me!

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  66. I’m fasting for 3 days, possibly longer, in solidarity with the people of Darfur. I fast because I want to cause a change. I fast because there is a difference to be made. I fast because, to me, there is no other choice. This has to happen. I have to fast. I’ve taken all food away for 3 days and am only drinking water. It’s a hard fight, even in the first 24 hours, but it’s well worth it because of the impact it’s having in the lives of people around me and even in my own.
    I post entries and reflections of it on my blog. I stand for hope and change needed to avoid further agony by the undeserved. I fast because I know this is right and just and pertinent.

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  67. I’m on day 5 of my water only fast and feeling a little tired. While I am no stranger to fasting, I’ve done it in the past for spiritual and physical benefits, it’s a good feeling to do it for someone, or many someones, instead of just for myself.

    I don’t know if this is cheating, but I’ve found from past fasts, there is a simple solution to killing those awful hunger pangs and cravings. I work in a busy corporate office and stomach growls can be embarassing, so I use this simple technique before meetings.

    A few gulps of seltzer water. I don’t know if it’s the carbonation or what it is, but it will quiet the grumbling for a period of time so I can avoid drawing attention to myself.

    My fasting best is 12 days, so the 15 days I have committed to seems easy. I may extend it if my body, and physician, allows!

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  68. Tuesday was the end of my fast for Dafur, with the support of my doctors I was able to fast for 11 days. I am Sickle Cell patients and I have cancer and I am also HIV positive. When I asked my cancer team and sickle cell doctor about doing the fast they knew right away that I was going to do it with or without their advice and support, so they came up with a liquid diet for me to do the fast on the condition that I will call if off when felt weak or saw any signs of my Sickle Cell kicking into gear.

    Day 9 and 10 were kind of hard, this was when I the small headache that only got worse as I moved into day 10. By late afternoon on day 11 I called off the fast because the headache had gotten far worse and my Sickle Cell was really starting to bother me

    I wanted to fast so much longer, but I need to make certain that I am here on this planet to lift my voice and take a stand for things such as homelessness, HIV and AIDS and to show my support for the men, women and children of Darfur.

    I will pick the fast up again in a two weeks and try to go longer, but for right now I will pray for my brothers and sister in Darfur and also pray for everyone who is fasting in support of the people of Darfur.

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  69. Yasmine Kaidbey says:

    There’s an Ancient Chinese Proverb that says:
    “I hear…I forget
    I see…and I remember
    I do…and I understand”

    I have read a lot about Sudan and Darfur, seen a lot of documentaries, I have heard many people talking about the feeble peace, and the suffering displaced but after I have completed my first day of Water Only fast I came to understand an entirely different aspect of their suffering and daily struggles.

    I don’t think I can go on for 5 days on Water only (like I originally committed myself to),
    this is my second day and I already feel dizzy, weak, and feverish while the people of Darfur have been starving, getting raped, displaced and getting killed since 2003! This cannot go on, the international community is responsible in case a state fails to fulfill its responsibilities. The international community must do something to put an end to this humanitarian crisis, We must act now!

    I hope everyone will influence his/her friends or family to try to Fast for Life even if it’s just for one day, they will be surprised by the impact it leaves on them, I know I was.

    I will continue my fast but I will be alternating between liquids only and rations I guess. I wish I could do much more, the people of Darfur and of Sudan are constantly on my mind and deserve a much better life. My thesis will be dedicated to them, their suffering, and their undying hope and humour.

    Peace to all.

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  70. I am starting my fast tomorrow, May 25 2009. My goal is to go for 8 days, but on the 8th day if I feel I can go longer, I will. I am going to journal/blog this and I have already begun writing.
    The address is beaspark.wordpress.com
    I took the title from something Jon Foreman said that really inspired me, he said ‘be a spark, start a fire’ and that’s exactly what I want to do.
    Thank you all for joining in on this as well and I continue to pray that some actions be taken to end this crisis.

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  71. Joyce Davis says:

    my son and i fasted for one day for darfur. i was told by my doctor that even one day wouldn’t be good, even taking my many medications, but i decided i needed to. with only one day planned, my son, 12 yrs old and already an activist for darfur, asked to join me, and so we commenced our fast.

    i meditated on being without food availability, imagining myself not being able to break the fast but to be facing starvation. i let the anxiety build up in my mind, heart and body until i broke down and cried…which is what i did many times during the day, allowing myself only small amounts of water, more than my daruri brothers and sisters and children have available.

    my son, at school that day, was instructed to drink at least two bottles of water during the day, and one vitamin water – a motherly direction i could not resist, though i imagined myself not being able to give even water to my child to the same anxiety level as all the other self imposed darfur ‘challenges’ (for lack of a better world). admittedly, my meditations were probably a hundredth of the pain really experienced.

    the darfur fast for life has cemented my resolve to continue to keep my activism for darfur’s survival alive – and to be more creative in ways to be a voice for darfur. an email campaign which i started months ago, is this:
    at the end of every email i send, the words SAVE DARFUR are typed in bold green letters. i have enlisted many others to do the same, and will continue to until i never recieve another email without it. feel free to begin this small gesture among your friends and associates as well. maybe someday, it will reach the white house from the house and or the senate, somewhere it will be recognized and questioned and hopefully, acted on.

    thank you for this opportunity to be bolstered toward a greater sense of hopefulness for the people of darfur.

    sincerely and gratefully,
    peace—
    joyce davis
    alex davis
    winsted, ct

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  72. I completed 48 hours on a water-only fast, I tried to stay on for longer; however, last night I felt really dizzy and sick. I fasted from around 4:30pm May 30th to around the same time on June 1st. Throughout my journey with fastdarfur.org, the information I have come accross has been disturbing. I connected to the people and stories I watched on http://www.stopgenocidenow.org and ask myself everyday “What is the difference between the people I am watching, and my own family being there? None. We are all the same. We are all connected”. While I was fasting, I felt a profound connection with the people of Darfur, and felt an emotional bond to them. After reading that the camps at Oure Cassoni had been bombed by the Government of Sudan, I felt fear, hopelessness, and outrage. I think that all of this put together, and my dissatisfaction with my own living situation, led me to feeling unwell yesterday evening. I am deeply committed to saving Darfur, and also to Congo, and I need to think about my health too so that I can make the most meaningful contribution. Soon, I will be making some positive changes in my own life so that I can be in a position to give more. The first step in that is moving, so that I can have a home-base from where I’ll be able to travel in peace. I will continue to seek answers and solutions to the situation in Darfur, and I sincerely hope and pray that one day soon the people in the refugee camps in Chad will have a home to return to. I keep thinking of Jay-Z’s song “Minority Report”, written about hurricane Katrina, but relevant here:

    “People was poor before the hurricane came
    But the down pour poured like when Mary J. sang
    Every day it rains, so every day the pain
    But ignored them, and showed them the risk was to blame
    For life is a chain, cause and effected”
    “Helicopter swooped down just to get a scoop
    Through his telescopic lens but he didn’t scoop you
    The next five days, no help ensued
    They called you a refugee because you seek refuge”

    “So many times I’m, covering my eyes
    Peeking through my fingers
    Tryin’ to hide my, frustration at the way that we treat
    (Seems like we don’t even care)
    Turn on the TV, seein’ the pain
    Sayin’ such a shame
    Then tryin’ to go on with my life
    Of that, I too, am guilty
    (Seems like we don’t even care)
    So we send a lil’ money, tell ‘em it’s alright
    To be able to sleep at night
    You will pay that price
    While some of these folks’ lost their whole life
    (Seems like we don’t even care)
    Now it wasn’t on the nightly news no more
    Suddenly it didn’t matter to you no more
    In the end almost nothing changed”

    Are we going to let nothing change in Darfur? I hope not.

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  73. Today is my third day of my fast (water only) I started on June 2nd. I will say the 1st day was the worst. It has gotten easier, but it is still very hard, I’m exhausted! I have had great support behind this which has been wonderful. People have said how hard this must be, but what I have realized and said is “I have a CHOICE, I made this choice not to eat, I can choose to eat at anytime, the people in Darfur do not have this same luxury.” Something must be done. This can not go on any longer. I have never been to Darfur, but I’ve been to other parts of Africa and something needs to be done NOW.
    I do hope that this helps to raise awareness and more people start to stand up for Darfur….only time will tell…..

    73
  74. Catherine Corpeny says:

    I was going to begin my fast on June 20th when I was leaving for DC to lobby Congressional leaders on behalf of the LRA DISARMAMENT AND N UGANDA RECOVERY ACT. A very wise friend told me to hold a beat– wait for a time when I didn’t have to think, be sharp, or need energy. That turned out to be very sage advice. I ended up fasting the day I left DC on the 25th and thought I would do 5 days. I did three. Water only. I had never fasted before and the hunger pangs were painful and my thinking was blurred. My whole world became about how to transcend my feelings of hunger, and how much longer I had to wait until I could have food. The depth of my compassion grew for the Darfurian refugees. The last day of my fast I just tried to be still, tried to be in solidarity with those who were experiencing what I was experiencing except I got to stop after three days to a full refrigerator and they had to endure for months, years on end. Before I took my first bite of food after three days (that was supposed to be five) I said a prayer to all Darfurians, then cried. I will do my second fast sometime in August and continue my pledge to myself to not stop taking action in any way I can no matter how big or small until the genocide has ended. Catherine Corpeny

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  75. Joanne Clarke, Gainesville, FL says:

    I joined the fast a month ago. I am only fasting one day at a time, each Monday. In a way, I never feel the pain, but it is recurring and brings the suffering to mind each week. Because I have ulcer problems, I allow myself milk when I need it to settle my stomach, but that and water is all I consume. Until this Monday, I had not really been hungry. Yesterday was a little harder. I was grateful that I could eat when I woke up this morning, which isn’t something I would normally even think about. I know forgoing eating is very different from having nothing to eat. But it does remind me of how many people in this world are hungry.

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  76. I wrote this for my blogs (http://diceytalks.blogspot.com/ and http://marygracey.wordpress.com/) after joining the fast last May:

    (19 May 2009)

    It is harder to ignore a fact when it is hissing and growling inside my stomach. And the fact is that, right now, about 2.7 million people from Darfur are starving in displacement camps where they fled from violence and annihilation. And this already dire condition worsened beginning earlier this year, when the Sudanese government blocked the aid coming from international humanitarian groups, which the refugees have come to depend on for daily survival.

    As I write this, deadlines are hounding me. But these are paperwork—concepts and abstractions in the air. The hard realities present a more impending deadline. Lives are actually at stake. And my humanity is on the line.

    In those moments when I’m not distracted, the heart recognizes that the stories of the displaced people in Darfur are closely intertwined with mine. But a full stomach can sometimes muddy this clarity in the busy streets of a harried mind. This is a timely reminder even for a grad student struggling to pay the rent and bills in a “3rd world country” such as the Philippines where inner and outward poverty is as close as glancing outside the window, stepping outside the door, and looking in my mirror. Because whether a country is included in the G8 or the Bottom 8, each nation has something at stake here.

    Yet this is more than just an issue of nutrition and physical survival. There is a different kind of hunger which affects more than the flesh and the bones. Sadly, this deeper sort of hunger not only gnaws at the soul and erodes dignity; it also emaciates the humaneness in humanity.

    Once self-sustaining and thriving as a community, the refugees now have fewer to call their own and even much lesser to partake as daily sustenance. Yet they and I and everyone else will always be equal in dignity. My hunger strike as a tiny gesture of oneness with every Darfuri may be a drop in the bucket. Yet I’m hoping that that drop will help tip the scales to balance—a more accurate depiction of every person’s equality in worth.

    The hunger pangs, trauma, and terror of the displace Darfuris are mine too. But the more disturbing thing is that I don’t just identify with the “victims” in the refugee camps. The perpetrators who have vehemently denied the necessities and brutally forced them out of their lands and homes? Sometimes I am them too—when I know about these things and I don’t even try to do anything about it.

    But what do I do about it? I have no clue. All I know is that my voluntary hunger does not directly lead to having at least one famished Darfuri in the camps being fed by what I denied myself. It’s obviously not a simple equation as that. But the experience of fasting to enter the stories of those who are suffering did bring the refugees’ plight to the forefront of my consciousness and the core of my affect. I have become more aware of my own greed, selfishness, and apathy. I had been accustomed to having food when I need or want it that I have to consciously resist it. I am more needled by injustices—whether committed by my own hands or those in power halfway around the globe. More than ever, I am stirred beyond sentiments and lofty ideals.

    In particular, I am moved to tell and retell these stories to others. As the website poignantly attests, Adam, Oumat, Ateib, Dajhima, Nima, the rest of those who are fasting without choice, and everyone else in the planet—each has a story to tell and live for. Since I joined the 3-day fast for Darfur, I have been telling the Darfuris’ stories of forced deprivation and my story of joining them through voluntary hunger, to friends and family, colleagues and strangers, in planes, buses, gatherings—anyone who is willing to listen.

    I want their stories not to end in this bleak plight; I want every heart out there in the displaced camps to be strengthened with stories of renewed hope and sense of dignity. May others join in helping write a more hope-filled story of the Darfuris and then re-write a dark chapter in history into a brighter one.

    Join the fast at: (link)

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  77. I was thinking of fasting anyways, since I need to adjust my attitude about food – I should eat to live, not eat to live. Also, I realize that people are starving in much of the world. I am attending a Darfur event on Sunday afternoon (12:00 PM – 5:00 PM) – for all of Saturday and until the event (where there is Sudanese food), I plan on drinking nothing but water, chewing on sugar-free gum, and taking my medication. It will be roughly a 36-hour fast, and I also plan on restricting myself to one meal a day after this fast is over (for February)- hopefully, it will change my perspective on the people in Darfur, and my perspective on food in general.

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  78. Also, I plan on donating any money that I would have spend on food during this period as additional donations to the refugees in Darfur.

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