Being a nanny is quite an experience. You never know what is going to happen when you walk through the door of another family’s house. I essentially view my job as becoming a part of the family and I get to be along for the ride, including all of the ups, downs, and corkscrews. There was one particular nannying experience in 2016 that changed my life forever.
Flash back to the week before Easter 2016. There was not a single day that went by when I did not have meat, cheese, eggs, and/or other animal products. That was the way things had been my entire life. I had no idea. It was the way I was raised and I did not know otherwise. I went to work like any other day (probably after a bowl of cereal covered in cow’s milk). Like I said, with nannying, you never knew exactly what you were going to get. That day, the experience included two chicks that the parents got as an Easter gift for the girls.
I distinctly remember that one was dyed blue and one was dyed red. The girls named them Bluejay and Nugget, respectively. At first, I thought the name Nugget was a little funny. Hey, after all, fried chicken was my go-to meal most nights of the week. However, after caring for those chicks and playing with them with the girls for a few weeks, I connected with those chicks. I saw them as beings with wants and needs. Very suddenly, I could no longer stomach chicken. I had this queasy ache in my stomach every time I tried to eat chicken because I could no longer eat that meat without attaching the faces of Bluejay and Nugget to my meal. It absolutely broke my heart. Very soon after, I couldn’t stomach any meat whatsoever. The food on my plate and the faces of real, living animals were connected and I couldn’t disconnect them, no matter how hard I tried. I will admit that I did try. I tried to brush it off and forget what I had learned and seen. I was stubborn and did not want to change my ways or feel like I was sacrificing, so I kept trying. I just couldn’t do it though. I had learned the truth.
I decided I would try vegetarian.
That switch was easy. I could still eat dairy, eggs, and honey. As long as I wasn’t eating flesh, it was vegetarian. Eliminating meat from my diet was way easier than I had anticipated, but something still seemed wrong. Something was off. I decided to research veganism and I am thankful every day that I did. I quickly learned about “rape racks” and chick grinding. It was then that I had enough. I became passionate about finding as much information I could find on reasons to go vegan and the horrors of animal agriculture. I wanted answers. I felt like I was waking up for the first time.
During my research, I stumbled upon a documentary called Cowspiracy. If you have not seen this documentary and you are interested, stop what you are doing, head over to my contact page, and send me an email saying that you would like to see it. I will pay the $5 for anybody wanting to watch this. As of right now, it is on Netflix, so that is also a possible option.
Anyway, I found Cowspiracy (or it found me, maybe). I asked my husband if he would be willing to watch it with me. He had not completely understood my obsession, but he did want more information on what I was getting into and why. We hit play and approximately an hour and a half later, my husband turned to me and said, “Well, it looks like I’m going vegan too” and that was that.
This was approximately late April 2016 and we were getting married May 21st. Our wedding was already mostly planned (including food and cake and whatnot) and we had already booked a non-refundable, all-inclusive beach resort honeymoon. We decided that we needed no extra stress for the month of May, so we decided to use May to research veganism and to use up any food we had that contained animal products.
On June 1st, 2016, we took the plunge and we have never looked back. Our eyes have been opened and we now feel so connected to the world around us. We may have slipped here and there, mostly unintentionally, but we have never regretted making this decision that has changed our lives for the better.