“Our purpose is simple - to love. To love each other, to love all life, and to love our earth,” -- Anthony Douglas Williams, Inside the Divine Pattern
I figured a lot of people wouldn't read this blog if it was titled "Vegan," so I opted for the trendier “Plant Based” instead. I’m not sure why people tune out and roll their eyes at the mention of the word, but I respect their feelings.
And I'm not going to lie. I really wasn't sure I could do it when my husband first suggested we become vegan, although he was adamant this was going to be his way of life from now on. After 23 years together, I know that once he makes up his mind, that's pretty much it.
We both love animals and after one too many documentaries about how animals are raised and slaughtered for our food supply, we turned our sadness and outrage into action. (We’re not throwing fake blood on anyone or holding signs in the street, but we removed ourselves from the “demand” part of that chain and it feels pretty good).
I’ve been working hard on judgement these last many months. My old life in TV felt consumed by judgement - what I wore, what my hair and makeup looked like, my weight, wrinkles on my forehead and lines in my lips and the length of my eyelashes. SO. Much. Judging.
I took that inside myself. Judging myself, which leads to judging others, which leads to comparing, which is just gross. So I’m working on that. And I share all of this because I don’t judge anyone who doesn’t choose this life. And I realize people’s livelihoods depend on this food chain we have created, so I don’t judge them either.
How we choose to nourish our bodies is one of our most personal decisions. And like I said, I wasn’t totally on board in the beginning. My former co-workers might remember me devouring a cheeseburger during our last dinner together. I just couldn’t let it go yet. But I remember that meal because it was the last time I ate meat or dairy. And it will always be the last time.
For me, kindness has to start with being kind to yourself. To myself. I really wasn’t kind to myself for a long time. Focused on the wrong things. The outside things. I didn’t nourish my body properly. It sounds crazy, but I looked at food as a reward. I worked really hard and I sacrificed so much of my time for work and for others, I thought I deserved that fast food. Or the soda. Or the candy bar. Ugh.
Looking back, it’s ridiculous. I didn’t feel overweight, but I was definitely a little puffy. But there was just too much at stake, with the history of heart disease, cancer, thyroid disease, and so many others, in my family.
I tried every diet on the planet and I know I’m going to shock you when I say - they don’t work. Nutrition has to be a way of life. I’ve lost 15 pounds in the five months since I became vegan, but that’s the least of it. The fact is, I just feel better. I incorporated walking and yoga and bike riding in to my daily life, which has also helped.
I’m not here to preach about it. But if you want to talk about it, I am more than willing to help. For me, kindness starts with me, and showing kindness to other living things has to be part of all of it.
Links to some of my favorite recipes: