My Vegan Journey
Going vegan wasn't something I ever believed I would do, let alone be so passionate about. Every time I heard about veganism (which honestly was not that often) I always thought "OMG give up eggs and cheese? NO way!".
But here I am, 1 year of veganism behind me (and honestly I stil consider myself a vegan newbie) But there's no way I'll go back. My only regret is I wish I had done it sooner.
I always considered myself an animal lover my entire life. I remember going fishing with my dad at a young age and crying my eyes out when he killed the fish. I was always told that I was just too sensitive.
As a child, I remember watching that iconic episode of "The Simpsons" where Lisa became vegetarian that spiked my interest. I remember saying to my parents "I should go vegetarian!". I was immediately met with criticism and was warned of everything I would be deprived of like tacos, burgers, spaghetti, etc. So I continued eating meat believing it was "natural" and thinking it was the normal way to live. (I need to add that I in no way blame my parents for raising me as a meat eater, that's how they were raised and didn't know anything else)
It wasn't until my early 20's that I had even heard about veganism. I remember one someone telling me they were vegan and I remember being blown away. I even remember asking her the dreaded question "where do you get your protein" (I still can't believe I even asked that, when I look back on it I'm so ashamed! lol)
It was was probably about a year later after I had met my first vegan that I was mindlessly scrolling through YouTube looking for videos about minimalism and I came across a channel called "Pick up Limes". I watched all Sadias videos on minimalism, she has a way about her that is so claiming and I thoroughly enjoyed her videos. After I had watched all her videos about minimalism I started to branch out into her other videos about plant based nutrition and why to go vegan and some of her amazing whole food recipes. These videos had really spiked my interest. I still hadn't made the plunge but it was in the back of my mind that I should try it.
A short time later a coworker had mentioned how her boyfriend had watched a documentary about animal products and how bad it was for your health and was completely swearing off meat. I was already considering giving up meat but felt I needed a final push so I asked her what documentary it was and it was of course "What The Health".
That weekend I watched it. Before I even watched it I knew it was going to be a game changer and I was definitely right about that. I couldn't believe all the information that there is linking animal products to so many diseases but yet our society still centers every meal around meat an animal products.
I felt like I had been lied to my entire life. Like society had brain washed me into believing that slices of turkey deli meat was good for me when in reality processed meats are actually a group 1 carcinogen (in the same category as cigarettes!).
So the next morning me and my boyfriend had our classic big Sunday breakfast which consisted of every unhealthy animal product you can think of and then I looked at him and said "OK, that's the last time I'm going to eat meat"
He was surprisingly very supportive, but I think mainly because he believed I wouldn't be able to do it haha. I started out with the mindset OK I'm just going to give up meat just for one week, just to see if i can. So after my vegetarian week was successful I decided to try a week of giving up obvious diary (So bye bye cheese)
That was was a little more challenging. My loving boyfriend suggested "Why don't you just go vegetarian? You can still not eat animals and feel good about that" but I couldn't do it. I knew too much, and just being vegetarian to me felt half assed and I'm not about that life lol. So I did my cheese free week with one relapse on George street where I ate some stupid mozza sticks at Jungle Jims (If you're not from Newfoundland you probably won't get this reference lol)
So after my bumpy week of no obvious diary I decided it was time to rip off the band aid and dive in head first into veganism. So good bye to my beloved eggs (which was my favourite food since childhood) and time to start reading some labels and cut out everything animal related.
Once I started reading labels it was actually mind boggling how many things contained diary. Like why does ketchup flavour chips have diary?? WHY?! But luckily I found a local vegan Facebook group that had great resources for vegan options and vegan snacks that i often turned to for guidance (and still do today!)
It took some effort and a lot of researching recipes and buying a few good cook books (Oh she glows, you are the bomb!) but now I can say that I love vegan cooking! I never believed I was a very good cook but since I went vegan I feel like I'm pretty good at it, I must of just been cooking the wrong things haha.
So here I am, a full blown vegan. It's not always easy but I love all the benefits that veganism has given me. Not just with my health, which was my original vegan motivation, by with my soul. Every since I was a child I've loved animals and never wanted to see them harmed and now I feel like I'm the person I was always meant to be. I'm aligned with my compassionate soul that I had when I was 5 years old and I'm finally the person I was meant to be.
I sincerely hope my journey has inspired you. Even if you are not vegan or even vegetarian I want to thank you for reading my post. I hope that means that you are at least veg curious like I once was and maybe you can keep it in the back of your mind, educate yourself, and make a decision to hopefully give it a try.
All the best,
Ps. I also wanted to thank everyone who inspired me to get where I am and continue to inspire me every day. Who knows where I'd be without your inspiration (Probably still overweight, unhealthly, and still eating animals)
Pick Up Limes, What The Health, The Edgy Veg, Hot for Food, Jenny Mustard, Cheap Lazy Vegan, Bianca Taylor, Nimai Delgato, Rise Shine Cook, Oh She Glows, and many more!!