Before I was Vegan, most of my life I’d been a meat eater. I ate meat and saw no issue in that. I could be found saying such things like, “I like my steak mooing” or “that bouncing little lamb over there is my Sunday lunch.” I even mocked a vegetarian I used to work with – I am surprised she didn’t punch me in the face in all honesty. I must have sounded so stupid.
For it to be understood as clearly as possible, I want to be honest about the person I once was despite how hard it is to admit these things.
I thought I connected my food to my plate. I thought I really accepted and respected where my food came from. But in hindsight, I realise now it was all a fabrication.
The journey to become vegan was one I feel I was destined to become for a long time. Over the years I made attempts but support and education about it weren’t readily available.
It all changed for me after the birth of my twins. Suddenly I became a protector to these two vulnerable little beings that needed me to nurture them through life. Parenting was the one thing that opened my eyes to life. When you can give life why would you want to take it away from another being? To have this gift as to be able to create life yet, we destroy it in many other ways.
That made no sense to me.
I initially started out as a proper vegetarian. Not the half-arsed attempts of years before. This time I was dedicated and focused on educating myself. Thanks to social media and the internet I was able to do this in a fairly easy way.
One thing I noticed about being a vegetarian was that no one seemed all that bothered. They respected that I didn’t want to eat meat and that was it – end of story. But it was a whole different ball game when I became vegan. The backlash and the opinions were thrown at me and my faculties questioned.
This only made me more passionate about research and understanding veganism more. I found myself in heavy debates about B12, protein, “free-range”, calcium and questioned about my morals and beliefs.
Suddenly being vegan made people feel uncomfortable.
I wonder why? Is this because we know killing animals is wrong on all levels but somehow we’ve been brainwashed to believe its for the greater good?
But eating cheese, drinking milk, eating eggs is a preference. We know these things aren’t actually good for us but we continue to consume them because we have acquired a taste? Or we have become accustomed to certain delicacies, beverages etc containing these substances but would mean we would be “giving up” our luxuries and desires?
Becoming vegan isn’t a case of waking up one morning and declaring you are a vegan.
It’s likely every person that changed to a vegan lifestyle went through some pretty heavy personal challenges. I for one had to replay the fact I had said those awful things about animals. Knowing I put my wants and desires before the life of a sentient being made me feel shit in all honesty.
Knowing I had consumed hundreds if not thousands of animals in my lifetime. Knowing I consumed dead flesh made me physically sick. Knowing I had been brainwashed for all those years, believing that we are meant to live the life of what now feels like cannibalism – eating the flesh of a sentient being.
I felt pretty stupid. I felt hoodwinked. I felt angry at myself. I felt sick. I felt ashamed. But above all, I felt heartbroken and fearful for all the animals we subject to the cruelty. The sadistic torture, the killings. It all began to sink in and the message was loud and clear.
What we do to animals is unjust, unfair, morally wrong, unnecessary, insulting to our race, insulting and disrespectful to animals.
Those feelings are the drive in me to share the message of veganism. If only I had met a version of me or someone as passionate all those years ago. I could have been given a choice. I could have had that freedom to chose what I wanted to eat and be educated correctly.
I subject myself to horrors because I owe it to myself, to those I care about and most importantly to the animals. I have watched some horrific footage of animal abuse and sick death scenes. The worst horror film you can think of doesn’t even come close and I hate horrors. It is traumatic but I do it because I want to know about whats happening under my nose. I want to be enlightened to the reality of this world.
I try and share vegan lifestyle in a positive way on the blog and to those around me but in truth, I really do believe the horrors need to be witnessed first hand.
It’s all very well me telling you that you can get B12 from an array of other pure forms of food. Or recipes that taste even better than the meat versions. Or how much protein do you actually need and none of which has to come from murdering animals?
I could sit here until the cows come home (no pun intended) or until I was blue in the face but unless you take responsibility for your actions by paying others to kill animals for you. Then I’m wasting my breath.
I have the utmost respect for anyone making any kind of change. Even if it’s meat-free days or dairy free days or making subtle switches to products like butter or milk.
I think anyone that does this should be applauded and recognised for the change I just ask one thing… that you continue to keep making changes and keep researching and educating yourself about the whys and the how’s.