From: Ellen (220.127.116.11)
Subject: Re: New vegan and feeling alone
Date: March 6, 2005 at 8:38 am PST
In Reply to: New vegan and feeling alone posted by Lisa on February 4, 2005 at 9:10 pm:
Lemme just say, you're not alone by any means.
Your situation actually kinda sounds like how things happened for me.
I had decided to become a vegetarian but I was curious why people go so far as to be vegan. So I did my research and was so appalled and astounded by all that I found out regarding the dairy and egg industries that I decided that I could not consciously live with peace of mind in myself if I didn't go all the way and be vegan. So it was an overnight thing for me. One day I was vegetarian, spent that day researching veganism, and I've been strict vegan ever since and now it's been two years and still going strong. Upon starting off I had to spend so much time researching nutrition facts, alternatives to animal products, ingredients to avoid that are animal derived, etc...
I thought "There's so much work involved, this is so hard to do" so much to change at once, but I was determined and had my mind made up of what I had to do so I got it done. The more you shop and cook and eat and live vegan, the more in your nature it becomes, the easier it becomes, the more familiar it becomes. I'm to the point now, two years down the road, that it's just "Me" and who I am, no second thought about it, no struggling to make it work.... because it's such a given habitual part of my existence now.
It's even helped me figure out some of what I want to do with my life. I'm going to school to get a Ph.D. in holistic nutrition. I'll even be taking some specialized courses focusing on vegan and vegetarian nutrition in particular... By the time I'm done I'll be able to be an offical nutritional health consultant, and I'm very excited about that... because I want to be able to help people. And something so seemingly simple as diet changes can make all the difference between life and living-painfree verses death in this world.
I was lucky to have a supportive and understanding family. Their only concern was that I eat enough and had a properly balanced amount of food. (Which I do)
Since I enjoy cooking I would make my own food...
And over time, because of my good cooking and positive reinforcement and being inspirational by living with such a lifestyle myself so steadfastly... over time my sisters and their boyfriends eventually all went vegetarian because of what I started, and my parents pretty much are now as well too. I've inpsired others too. Opened up more minds to it where there previously was no thoughts of such things.
If you approach the issues in a humble and courteous, yet passionate, honest/sincere and dedicated manner, then you really are "walking the talk" so to speak, you're living by exmaple... and it will inspire others... Which inturn fuels your ambition.
Of course there will always be tough times and spots and difficult people and situations to deal with sometimes when living in such a meat-centric society. You do have to brace yourself for that.
But all in all, just remember you're doing a good thing! You're not doing it for your family or your boyfriend or anyone one else like that, so ultiamtely it doesn't matter what they think. It's your life and your body and your choice. You're doing it for you and your health, you're doing it to reduce suffering in the world, you're doing it to take the murder of animals, defenseless creatures, out of being a part of your life, you're doing it because it can help the environment and even to end world hunger. There are so many benefits to a plant centered diet, and as long as you remind yourself of that and stay ever educating yourself and reading up about it, then you can uphold your own convictions in the face of obstacles.
If you have any more questions, would like any more advice, or just some moral support and some conversation from someone who can sympathize with your situation... feel free to e-mail me anytime.