This week, I'm celebrating one year as a vegan!
I became a lacto-ovo vegetarian at age 16, about 14 1/2 years ago, probably most motivated by my younger brother's committment to the cause. The literature from PETA that he received helped too. One day, it just hit me, that I couldn't eat a poor animal who lived in suffering only to become my chicken sandwich.
Then, I read more about how egg-laying hens suffer, crammed into crates without room to stretch their wings or roam, and how poor dairy cows have their babies taken away from them only to be confined for their miserable brief lives. And "cow pus" from the multitude of infections that dairy cows' nipples suffer from due to the machinery that milks them, that grossed me out.
But it took me a year and a half from that point to become a vegan. I had no idea how to live without dairy or eggs -- how do you dine out at restaurants? What about birthday cake? My (now ex) husband loves making me French Toast -- wouldn't he be disappointed?
I realized that going vegan was the right thing to do. For the animals, for my health, and for the environment. There are more dining out options than I ever thought; a birthday cake can be made vegan, and so can French Toast.
I've never regretted becoming a vegan. I only wish I'd done it sooner.