Today is my 53rd birthday. It could easily blend in with all the other birthdays and fade away, forget it and move on. But, something is stirring in my soul that I can no longer ignore. I watched Undercover Boss a couple days ago. One of the featured businesses was a frozen yogurt company. The undercover boss went to the dairy farm that provides the milk for their yogurt. One of the chores he had to do was to stick his arm in a cow’s butt which is apparently something that is done to check the health of the cow. The cow was shaking her head and mooing as he was doing this procedure. The cows were not grazing freely in a pasture. There were hundreds of cows all in a row with their heads stuck between metal bars. I turned off the show. I couldn’t bare to watch anymore. I have already watched so many documentaries of animal cruelty all in the name of providing food for our insatiable appetites.
When I first became a vegetarian four years ago, I did it mostly for health reasons (although Earthlings had a profound effect on me and did contribute to my decision), but my health hasn’t improved that much. I am still morbidly obese which I contribute to consuming junk food including dairy – ice cream, cheese and chocolate which often has milk in the ingredients…
What I am discovering is that the longer I am vegetarian, the more aware I am becoming to the humane side of wanting to stop consuming animal products. I can’t get those images of animals being mistreated out of my head.
I just don’t want to be part of the carnage anymore. I realize that this decision puts me in a precarious position where people who eat meat may feel like I am judging them. I am not. I am doing what I must for my own health and sanity. I believe we all have to come to our own conclusions based on the information we receive and process.
So, for my birthday, I am giving the greatest gift I can think of. A gift that will benefit me, my family, and the animals… vegetarian to vegan… it is time.
I am going to do everything I can to consume whole, plant based food. I am giving myself the gift of health.
Happy birthday to me!