I ate a peanut butter and pickle sandwich for a snack a moment ago. Is that weird? Is being vegan weird?
Whether I like it or not, being vegan sometimes makes me feel different. It was a strong feeling in the first few months and has gradually faded, at least from within. That said, I had a couple experiences in the past week where I felt like a total weirdo for being vegan.
I went out for dinner and was really appreciative when my friends made sure we went to a place where I would have vegan options. It had been awhile since I had seen one of them and she learned only a day or two before our dinner that I was vegan. It was kind of a strange meal. I felt like I was pitied because I “couldn’t” eat the meat dishes (we went out for tapas), and I also felt like the meat dishes were purposefully moved as far away from me as possible on the table. And when I offered my vegan plates to share, I got this reaction of, “No no no, that’s your food. You can’t eat our stuff so we won’t eat yours. I hope your food is good, though!” I wasn’t offended and I knew the intention wasn’t malicious, but it made me feel really weird. So I drank more sangria to take the edge off.
Yesterday, I went rogue and had a slice of cake at work. I was also offered a slice of cheesy custard coffee cake. I declined, saying that I had already been bad by eating the cake and didn’t want to be further bad and eat cheese. Without getting into specifics, let me just say that I started ranting about how cheese is dairy and dairy isn’t good for you and dairy DOES hurt cows and I don’t want to argue about whether or not it’s cool to eat cheese. The response I got from my rant: “I wasn’t attacking you. I didn’t know about milking cows and hormones. I was asking a lot of questions because I really didn’t know and I want to understand. I’m sorry!” Whoa. When did I become a defensive vegan?! WEIRD!
Ahhhh! All that aside, I’m really happy that I’ve chosen to turn veganese. It’s brought a lot of joy and knowledge into my life. It’s a lifestyle that I am extremely proud of. If that makes me weird, then I am a total weirdo! –Melissa