Monday, January 4, 2010

My first blogspot post... over a year after subscribing

Hello! I made this blog a while ago as a place to jot down and explore thoughts and questions I had in regards to life and the world around me. Finally, I've come to put it to use, as I'm about two months into the greatest journey of my life so far: I decided to become vegan.

I'll start at the beginning. Way, way back. I always grew up with pets, which I think was essential in developing the (possibly excessive) compassion and love I have for animals. We had a cat, Frisky, from before I was born, until I was about 15. I also had a bird, a parakeet, that I was extremely close to. Priscilla was a gift for my tenth birthday, and unfortunately he (yes, Priscilla was a he) died young, just three years later. I was incredibly sad, completely devastated. It possibly sparked the onset of a ten year bout of depression. A year and a half ago, I met my current boyfriend. A month into our relationship, we went out to play some pool, and passed by a yard which encased an adorable gray kitten. I stopped at the fence oohing and awwing, trying to coax the kitty towards us. He realized how incredibly, ridiculously much I loved cats, and offered to buy and house one for me after that (I was staying with my parents, who would not have another cat in their house). After that Miss Merryweather, also known simply as Kitty, came into my life. I love her to death, and I tell her every morning that she is my inspiration.

I still remember being horrified as a child discovering that the eggs I ate were chicken eggs. My parents consoled me, "They were the duds, they wouldn't hatch anyway." I took their word for it, as children do with parental explanations, and didn't think about it again for a long time. About a year or two ago, one of my sisters (I have three!) read Skinny Bitch, which prompted her to begin living more vegan, or at least vegetarian. Despite the relatively short duration of her veganism, she still continues to avoid animal products more often than not. She also piqued my interest in the subject along with getting my parents somewhat accustomed to the lifestyle. At that point, I decided that I, too, wanted to quit using animal products. Having no income of my own, however, the idea quickly faded, as I didn't want to be a burden on those taking care of me. I also fell prey to the false advertising of the meat industry, and did not understand how Beth would get all her protein!

Now, the moment that resparked my desire to give up meat! It is really quite silly to describe... I was watching an episode of Survivor (one of my favorite shows!). They always give out chickens as a prize for one of the reward challenges, so that they can lay eggs and provide protein for the Survivors. Usually, one of the Survivors talks to and spends time with the chickens, almost like companion pets. As the end of the game closed in, the Survivors became hungrier and decided to kill one of the chickens to eat. One of them exclaimed that she did not want to be there when they killed it or see it running around bloody and headless. That's when it clicked in my head. THAT is what I'm eating. I finally made the connection between the chicken I eat and the chicken animal. Of course we all KNOW that chicken comes from chicken, but I had forgotten what that really meant.

Yet I still wasn't quite ready... My parents thought it was a stupid idea: "Oh, don't do like Beth did!" My boyfriend was okay with it, but not particularly encouraging. Fortunately, one person told me to quit eating meat if I felt it was right, and that was all the push I needed. After that conversation, I finished off the half of a chicken sandwich I had waiting in the fridge, and have not since touched any form of meat but fish (making November 11th my first day of pescetarianism).

But obviously that's not where my story ends! Today I am vegan, not pescetarian. I started doing a lot of research. I wanted to make sure I knew what vitamins and minerals I'd have a harder time getting in my diet, as well as sources of them. After finishing my first book on vegetarianism (Being Vegetarian for Dummies... yes, I went for something obvious), I was sold on veganism. That book didn't get much into the environmental problems associated with a meat diet; it was more of a nutritional aid. From a nutritional standpoint, veganism seemed (and seems) the best option. I continued my research, looking into PETA and other books. The more I learn, the more infuriated I become at the inhumane, irresponsible practices of the meat industry, and even the government for permitting them.

I mentioned previously a ten year bout of depression. In combination with other factors, doing something I'm so incredibly proud of (going vegan!) has finally brought an end to my depression. I am 24 and excited to get back to a life that I actively participate in, rather than passively letting life pass me by. I hope to continue researching, find many ways to contribute to change, and help (nicely, not forcefully) others to see the light. I intend to use this blog to jot down recipes, review books, share my cool new vegan finds, etc. I WANT TO SAVE THE WORLD!

2 comments:

Thomas said...

I think you'll do well with a blog, it seems to help to have your thoughts written out for you to read back to yourself :) Now get working on those vegan protein recipes for me :D

Evie said...

Thank you, Tommypie :)