No it isn’t a relationship, today marks a full year since I decided to become a vegetarian and I’ve come such a long way! In honor of this milestone I think I’ll tell the story of how I became a vegetarian overnight. Literally.
I’d just gotten home from class one day and decided to do some online work. I lasted about 30 minutes before I got bored with it and hopped on YouTube. Somehow I got around to undercover videos that were filmed in factory farms and I found it disgusting and heartbreaking. The fact that some people can display such a lack of empathy for these animals really says something about humans. Do you guys know how baby pigs are castrated in these “farms”? A worker twists and pulls on the testicles with their hands until they tear off. No anesthesia, no numbing agent, it’s a crude practice and the baby pig screams and kicks the entire time. Just imagine the worst pain you’ve ever experienced and then imagine that being the first thing you feel when you’re born.
After only 10 minutes of watching these videos I realized that there is no way I can continue to support this industry. Once you know better you have a responsibility to do better. Factory farming produces more pollution than all vehicles on the road today combined, and the land that’s used to raise cattle and their feed destroys thousands of acres of forests at a time. We don’t need to have the whole “trees are important” discussion right? Even if you’re able to turn a blind eye to the inhumane practices that take place, the science and proof is still there, changes need to be made.
Anyway, I’d just gone grocery shopping the day before and I had a fridge full of meat. I took all the meat out and went straight to the dumpster. In hindsight I probably should’ve given it to someone else but I was just really emotional okay. I spent the next few weeks eating a combination of salad, canned vegetables, and french fries because I had no idea how to be a vegetarian. It was rough life for a while let me tell you.
The good news is that after you stop waking up in cold sweats after dreaming you ate a chicken wing you feel awesome! Your skin clears up, you feel a little less tired, and the feeling you get of knowing you’re doing something right is indescribable. Plus, there are so many great vegetarian dishes out there to try. Once my friends and family saw that I was serious, the support was great. It became second nature for them to cook vegetarian friendly meals and find vegetarian friendly restaurants. Becoming a vegetarian has really been eye opening for me, it’s allowed me to discover passions I didn’t even realize I had; animal rights, humanitarianism, preserving the environment – basically I just care about doing what’s right.
To celebrate my one year I’ve decided to post the best vegetarian dishes I’ve had so far. If you’re still reading then thanks for hanging in there. Til next time!
This vegetarian sushi from Charlotte, NC. I mean just look at it.
This incredible handmade veggie burger from a restaurant in Times Square
This spread of Mexican goodness.
And this appetizer that I got hooked on in NYC.