“So what possessed you to become vegan?”
I cringed. Possessed, she had said.
Like it was some kind of plague.
My hands began to shake and I could feel my face getting hot as I replied with a low-key-pissed-off-laugh, “Haha, ahem, possessed?”
She recovered. “Oh, you know, what inspired you?”
Nice save. Too bad I’m already shaking.
This was the first time that I was without my own food and kitchen, in a different state and non vegan-friendly area since I’ve gone vegan. I guess I assumed that everyone would accept me without question & try to accommodate me & that salads would be available 24/7 in this town.
Boy, oh boy, how I was mistaken.
After much vegetable deprivation, I realized that I had been living in a bubble, a fathom of my own creation; a world where I was safe from judgement in the comfort of my kitchen, surrounded by organic, cruelty-free cooking products, whisking my worries away into vegan goodies while truly feeling like I was doing good for the world.
The world is not my bubble. Nor do the people in this world live in my bubble.
I endured a crazy stressful weekend in the real world, standing up for my beliefs while trying to find acceptable food in a foreign place without being a complete burdon. I was so use to the “oh, you’re vegan? Well good for you. That’s great” reaction. Instead I recieved the judgmental, “I can’t understand why anyone would do that” reaction by those who could not understand what possessed me to go cruelty-free.
The world is not my bubble.
I just wanted to scream, YES, I CHOSE NOT TO EAT EGGS OR MILK-YES, MA’AM, THAT INCLUDES MAYONNAISE-OR THAT POOR LAMB CHOP YOU’RE CURRENTLY DEVOURING, NOW PLEASE RESPECT THAT AND LET ME BUY SOME PEANUT BUTTER FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS.
Alas, the world is not my bubble.
My sister sat me down and gave me some solid words of advise.
“You have to look out for yourself. Speak up. No one else in this world is looking after you & no one will hear what you’re trying to say if you don’t speak up.”
She also reminded me that the world does not cater to my needs and that adjustments must be made on my part; that it is all a give and take kind of deal.
“I know that you are so kind & I think that what you’re doing is so amazing, but you have to look out for yourself. Don’t let yourself get to the point of almost breaking. You can’t expect every one to bend to your needs.”
She was right. Although I had expected it to be hard & that I would have to bend a bit, I thought it would be easy to waltz around like a peace loving princess and expect some kind of compassion from the world without having to give much in return.
But that’s not the world we live in. It is not a bubble, but a dome. We walk around in our own realities and we forget that the true reality that we are in is not our own, but ours. Yours & mine. We live among the realities of one other, all at once, under the same sun.
So, respect thy vegan and non vegan. Remember how small you look from outer space and how close that view makes distance seem. Your reality is my reality is her reality is their reality is his reality is everyone’s reality.
And we are all connected to each other
In a circle of a hoop that never ends