Confessions of an ex-vegetarian.
After years of being a health and fitness enthusiast, environmental activist, and animal lover, it suddenly felt like becoming a vegetarian was the only way forward. Otherwise, I was a complete fraud, right? So, I decided to switch from a "flexitarian" (rarely ate meat) to a fully-fledged vegetarian during my entire first year at Uni. This was also in an attempt to create that "new me" like every first-year Uni student does. Now I'm in my second year and....
I'm not a vegetarian anymore
....and I have some confessions to make.
I was beaten by chorizo.
I know that all the hardcore vegans are going to look down on me for my terrible willpower and I know that I have nobody to blame but myself. Most people transition from vegetarianism back to omnivorous life in a slow and controlled manner - a bit of chicken here, a bite of ham there - and perhaps they have a solid, clear reason for their sudden change of heart, and will recite it to you with passion.
My transition was a little bit different. During a holiday in Malaga, I spent the first two days watching with googly eyes as my friends chowed down on delicious chorizo and prawn paella dishes. By the evening of day three, you could find me with a bottle of sangria in one hand and a half-finished packet of chorizo in the other, sprawled out on a sun lounger. Oops.
I do not miss the questioning.
Sometimes, I wanted to go a day without someone asking "But why are you vegetarian?" the second I politely turned down a cocktail sausage. I don't miss people waving a piece of chicken in my face and telling me just to eat it, and I certainly don't miss people saying "But where do you get your protein from?!". Remarkably, it seems that everyone becomes a nutrition expert the second you use the dreaded V word.
I will always stick up for other veggies.
Having been a veggie myself, I will always defend other vegetarians when I see some arrogant jerk waving a piece of chicken in their face as a joke, or using "bacon tho'" as a valid argument against someone who is speaking passionately about being vegetarian. I'll always be happy to chime in with the fact that beans and pulses will contribute to more than enough protein for your average joe.
I lied when I said that my Quorn fajitas tasted even better than the chicken ones. I kidded myself when I said "honestly, I much prefer my spicy bean burger to the quarter pounder beef burger" that I was secretly dreaming of. Sure, meat replacements are fine, and I'm sure plenty of people really do prefer them, but I might've been kidding myself to try and keep that will power strong.
In the end, I was always only a litre of sangria away from a will-power meltdown.
#tyro #bites #vegetarian