I may go on about how easy it has been to convert to veganism, but the truth is, I’ve got a secret weapon in my war on poor eating habits, and her name is Barbara.
We are creatures of habit. For most of us, that means we have fairly limited menus. Whether you’re eating a burger from McDonald’s, Chili’s or your own bbq, it’s still fundamentally just a burger. Add chicken with (add staple side dish here), maybe grandma’s famous pasta recipe and a few other typical dishes, and you have your biweekly rotation of meals served at dinner. Now, what if I said you can’t eat any dish that contains the key ingredients found in every one of those recipes? You would be forced to find new recipes, go to different aisles in the food store, read the full list of ingredients and likely have to find new grocery stores to do your shopping. Well, all of those tasks fall squarely on the shoulders of my better half.
Barbara has searched the internet and cookbooks for vegan recipes. She visited numerous new grocery stores to find which have the best selections for vegans. She’s become an expert on how to read ingredient lists and developed a whole new meal rotation for the entire family. I’m no writer so I’m sure I’m not doing a fantastic job of painting a picture of just what a mammoth disruption this has been to her life. Keep in mind, I haven’t become a “substitute vegan”, where I will simply swap out a burger for a veggie burger. I believe the only way to do this long term is to completely change your palate and that requires that the composition of your plate must look and feel as different as the new textures and flavors of your meals. That’s what makes it all the more incredible that she has managed to take it on without so much as a loud sigh. For this I am thankful to have such a fantastic partner in this and all of my endeavors.
Add to the mix, Javier, our breakfast chef at the office who makes the greatest veggie burrito with sides of fresh fruit and his secret Guatemalan beans, and you have a pretty sweet setup for conversion to veganism.
I can’t leave out the contribution of my kids. Masie, who has been a vegetarian for over 10 years, has actually benefitted from me becoming a vegan because it has expanded her range of options. Jackson, on the other hand, is an unabashed carnivore, but he’s also a gamer. Up for any challenge (see unicycling, slack lining, jumping stilts, and even yarn bombing), Jackson has been a supporter of the adjustment. Anyone with kids knows how important their contribution has been to a smooth transition.