When I was in eighth grade, I decided I wanted to become a vegetarian. My older cousin was a vegetarian, and I decided that the way people treated animals was terrible. So, I stopped eating meat. But I knew absolutely nothing about how to actually be a vegetarian. How was I supposed to get protein and iron into my body without meat? Of course, I didn’t really think about that. I just thought it was cool. So I lived on popcorn and lettuce for about three weeks until my mom put chicken on my dinner plate and told me to eat it or I was grounded.
Ever since then, I’ve contently been carnivorous. But over the last month or two, I’ve been debating whether or not I want to give vegetarianism another go. The only thing stopping me has been my love for bacon. I still do believe in animal rights. I’m not extreme about it, it doesn’t keep me awake at night, but I think some of the ways humans treat animals is insane. But I’m not writing this to convert anyone.
Mostly, my desire to become a vegetarian is to help me eat healthier. While I do, generally, eat well, I’m not perfect. I’ll go out to eat and tell myself to get a salad and end up ordering chicken wings. Oops.
So yesterday, I decided to do it. To just jump right into it. Instead of ordering the Italian Night Club from Jimmy John’s on my break at work, I ordered the Veggie Club. Meat or no meat, it’s still extremely satisfying.
Over the last year, I’ve become more and more conscious of what I put into my body. I’ve been avoiding food coloring and preservatives for the last six years (more on that another time) and I want to take a bolder step forward. Now that I’m older and more researched, I know more about where to find the nutrients I need from meat without eating it. Plus, I actually know how to cook. Back in eighth grade, the only cooking I knew was pressing the “popcorn” button on the microwave. So, here we go! Wish me luck. I’m driving down to Austin, Texas on Friday and with all their barbecue foods….I’ll be off to a tough start.