I’ve had a long love affair with meat. One of my favorite meals as a kid was a fried chicken drumstick, and my mother to this day admits it was a sure fire way to make me shut up at dinner time.
In fact, I partly blame my mother for my relationship with meat. She raised me in a Filipino kitchen that prepared pork and beef with the gusto, creating dishes that would make even the most devoted vegetarians have immoral thoughts.
With this hereditary and historical disadvantage, why on earth would I consider giving up animal protein for 21 days?
Because of happy cows.
Our culture is a little disconnected from what we eat. I remember dating a guy who invited me to pig picking. In Filipino culture, having a roasted pig is a huge deal, usually reserved for weddings and big celebrations. So seeing a fully intact roasted pig with a big smile on its face to me means it’s game on. He was so disgusted, we had to leave, but not before he had to basically pry me off of the beast.
Why was he so disgusted? Because for him, meat came in a neatly packed container in a sterilized meat section that had labels like, “Eat me, I’m delicious. But I resemble nothing like the animal I once was”.
I am no different. Even with my upbringing, I’ve become disenchanted with my meat. I accepted it’s packaging that camouflaged the former life inside that styrofoam package. Maybe it was a happy cow.
I’ve decided to take the leap, and join in the 21 day cleanse where we give up 5 items; caffeine, alcohol, gluten, sugar, and animal protein.
I’m not sure how I will react, but I’m interested in exploring my life without meat. Maybe I’ll come out unscathed, but in the very least more appreciative. Regardless, I’ll meat you on the other side.