Going vegan eating is like going on a trip to a different country – sometimes it’s fun, sometimes it sucks, and in the end you’re glad to go home!

Changing even most deeply-rooted traditions, customs, and even HABITS is really not that hard, in my opinion.

Seriously, all it takes is an OPEN MIND and a POSITIVE ATTITUDE; sort of like when traveling to a new country – everything is different and evokes curiosity, but it’s a welcome change, it’s EXCITING and FUN – and it’s part of the experience, right?

And a big part of the fun is getting to experience NEW things (and sometimes old things in a different way) – so why not approach veganism this way?

Treat it like going on a trip to a different country – or a different planet even, where love, peace, and happiness are the norm, all creatures live together in harmony, eternal peace and happiness, and where killing and eating fellow beings is unheard of … sorry, I got carried away ;-).

So, where was I? About travel….

When you travel, you keep an open mind. Things are different than they are back home, surprises are welcome and you don’t expect everything to be perfect – and food is not an exception: you certainly don’t expect to feast on your every-day fare; you know it’s going to be different: different tastes, different textures, new combinations, and new ingredients.

It will take you some time to find out what is what, to figure out what you like and what you don’t. At first, you may not like certain dishes, heck, you may even have no idea what they are when you look at the menu or someone offers it to you, and when you try them, some of them may be delightful, some may be average, and some may be BLAH, or even disgusting. It will take some trial and experimentation to find the ones that are your favorites, which – if you stay there longer, will become your staples, your go-to choices.

At first you may not be sure what you’re going to eat, but then you’ll become fascinated at the new choices that are now available to you. If cooking is your thing, you’ll learn new ways of preparing foods, explore unfamiliar ingredients and spices, and discover new combinations that you never tried before. And if you stay there long enough, you’ll start putting your own twist on these dishes, making them into your own.

If you decide to move there permanently, sooner or later there will come a time when you’ll start missing your home cooking. You’ll get tired of the exotic tastes and textures, and start longing for something more familiar to put in your mouth, and fill you up, and wish you could eat like you did at home again.

Especially during holidays and various celebrations, you’ll miss foods that you’re accustomed to, you’ll miss your mum’s cooking, what your grandma used to make; you’ll miss the dishes you remember from childhood. Even the simplest dishes, like mashed potatoes and gravy, will become the object of your desire, and you‘ll find yourself fantasizing about the old and familiar dishes while eating out at another gourmet restaurant.

So, you will start re-creating the dishes that you’ve known and loved forever, from the ingredients that are available to you – you’ll try to re-create the familiar recipes, tastes and textures. At first, you may fail miserably and the dish will taste nothing like you’d remembered it, nothing like the original you were trying to recreate. You may even give up trying – and wonder whether you’re going to eat those foods ever again.

But after a while, you may get really good at it. You’ll find substitutes you never knew existed, or even if you knew them, you’ll find new ways of using them. You’ll also find that certain ingredients can be omitted completely without compromising the quality of the end result.

Ultimately, if you’re patient, you’ll learn to put a new twist on the old dishes – to make them even more delicious and exciting – to make them yours, and they’ll become your new go-to recipes, reminding you of not just of who you WERE, but of who you ARE NOW.

So, when one becomes vegan, you may not be sure what you’ll be eating – at least at first, and it may be a little scary.

Although many vegan ingredients and dishes are delicious from the get-go, fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, beans, grains, nuts and seeds – all those foods are already familiar, they are already vegan, and they provide a cornucopia of options; but for someone who’s new to this way of eating and living, it does take certain skill and practice to create familiar combinations, learn to eat this way in a way that is satisfying and delicious. And I don’t say that to discourage you – to say that it’s HARD.

But just as you had to learn and practice preparing the dishes that you love right now, you have to learn and practice preparing the dishes in a new way.

Those recipes EVOLVED OVER TIME, often over many generations, and — when we were little, we often didn’t like them the first time we tried them. (I certainly remember NOT liking TRIPE SOUP as a kid. Cooked spinach too, healthy or not — it was disgusting!). We may not remember that, but we often had to try them many times before they became familiar – and desirable. Your parents just kept trying, feeding us different foods; then when you grew up, you kept experimenting, accepting some foods into your life, and rejecting others.

I guess my point is this:

Changing the way of eating takes time. Our tastes can change. Recipes evolve.

But justice, compassion, and living your values are important to you then …

YOU HAVE TO GIVE VEGANISM A CHANCE.

I beg you not to give up too soon.

Give it some time.

Have some patience.

Becoming vegan can be compared to travel to a different country – in terms of eating.

But becoming vegan is like moving to another planet altogether.

One where there’s no violence, no killing, no abuse of the week by the strong. There are no victims and no oppressors. Everyone is living in harmony.

Okay, so I got carried away. There is no such place in the universe.

And making this happen on Earth … is an impossible dream – or is it?

One day they said it’s impossible for a metal object to fly. That all people were not created equal. That women did not deserve to go to school or vote.

Impossible?

Maybe. But we (humans) made it happen.

So, join the REVOLUTION.

#SpeakYourTruth CHALLENGE begins today.  Join HERE.

speakyourtruthchallenge03

See you on the other side,

Joanna