full circle

. . .from an upward battle of struggles and emotions to a journey of healing, growth, and laughter. . .

#vegan for the animals, vegan for myself


One year ago today, I made one of the most important decisions I’ll ever make, to begin a lifetime journey of enlightenment.

After The Break Up, I found a new passion for animals that first started with cats. Being a cat guardian led me to volunteer with the cat rescue, which led me to tolerate dogs {lol}, which led me to love all animals. After burning out with the rescue group, I looked for different ways to be involved with my passion and love for animals. I went back to school and earned my animal welfare certificate. And then an animal welfare mini-conference opportunity presented itself, so I went.

In truth, the Animal Advocacy Camp turned out to be a big gathering of vegans and vegetarians. I felt so uncomfortable and guilty. I was afraid to tell anyone that I was a meat-eater. After the first day, after all I had heard, I knew I had to be vegetarian from that day forward. On the second day, Jo-Anne McArthur spoke. I cried. And cried. At 38, I felt so ignorant that I had no idea that dairy cows had their babies taken away from them the minute they were born. No idea. That was the moment I knew I had to be vegan.

The last 12 months has been a wonderful journey into a world I wish I had been part of my whole life. I am happier, healthier, discovering amazing new ingredients to explore with in my cooking, and relieved of the guilt of knowing the role I had previously played in the suffering of animals. Many colleagues and friends have told me it must be so hard and that they couldn’t do it. I told them if they believed in something as strongly as I believed in not killing animals, it would be easy for them to do. Their problem is that they are close-minded and ignorant, just like I was before. I had started reading Living Among Meat Eaters in which the author introduces an interesting concept. I don’t know whether it’s her own theory or if it has been tested {because I never ended up finishing the book}, but she asserts that everyone is a blocked vegetarian—for many reasons, they’re just not open to it yet.

So, the hard part wasn’t giving up meat or milk or cheese, etc. The hard part was dealing with the ignorance of others, especially friends. While it would be amazing if they all converted with me, I didn’t want to preach. I wanted to educate them, as I had been at the conference. {If you want a punch in the face, just say “Oh, don’t tell me. I don’t want to know.”} If you’re going to eat meat and dairy, at least be informed about where your food comes from and what’s happening to the animals. It’s encouraged to be informed about GMO and labelling and advertising, but it’s not ok to tell people about the horrors of mama cows who are artificially forced to produce milk for 10 months out of the year, even after their baby calves no longer need to be fed {and who, as mentioned, were taken away at birth anyways}.

vegan2People—our culture, our society, our world—don’t value animals, not truly. Superficially, we care. There are animal abuse cases every day in the media {another part of my advocacy efforts}, and society cares and is appalled when the horrific acts are against companion animals. But when it comes to “food,” the horrible acts against animals are acceptable. Why? Because society places a lower value on those animals. But guess what? WE ARE ALL ANIMALS. There is NO reason why humans should be above animals. NONE. Watch Speciesism, and you’ll understand.

So many thoughts and emotions running around in my mind during this anniversary. But it all fits—for once—neatly into one little package: my love for cats, my desire to help animals, my passion to make a difference. I’m vegan for the animals. I’m vegan for myself.

Author: elle superstar

I had four cats - now I have six but still no one to talk to, LOL. So, I write this blog to entertain me, myself, and I... and perhaps you.

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