Tuesday, April 5, 2011
No more living things.
I absolutely adore this little boy. He says the craziest things most of the time, but then there are those little moments when he says something so profound that it amazes me.
As some of you know, I've been trying for years now to switch to a vegetarian diet. I think it's a healthier and more compassionate way to live, and it's something I've been struggling to reach. There are several reasons why it's hard to eliminate meat from your diet, especially when you have little ones and there are just those nights when you don't want to cook and the only fast food available (in my mind, at least) is burgers or chicken.
Well the other day Tay and I were watching a cooking show. They were making chicken and dumplings and were showing the proper way to carve a chicken. Something clicked inside Taylor's little almost-four-year-old brain and he realized that the chicken he eats is made from real chickens. He looked at me with his big brown eyes and said, "Mommy, they're eating a living thing!" I told him yes, that they were cooking a chicken. He looked really confused and hurt and then started to cry. "I don't want to eat living things anymore," he said as tears rolled down his face. In that moment I decided that it's finally time. It's time that I stop making up excuses and taking the easy road when I know what I want for me and my family.
Yesterday I went over all my favorite recipes and realized that I can still make most of them with meatless alternatives, and I packed the boys in the car and headed for Sunflower Market. Taylor was so excited to see that we could get "chicken nuggets" that aren't made of chicken, and he loved them even more than regular chicken nuggets! Last night I got out my baked chimichangas recipe (a favorite in our house) and made it using veggie crumbles instead of ground turkey. It tasted the same and I felt good knowing I'm finally on my way to converting my home to a vegetarian lifestyle.
I'm so grateful that my little boy helped me finally make the leap, and I know we'll all be happier and healthier because he has so much compassion in his little heart for all living things.