A Vegetarian was Born

November 14, 2007

The moment I knew I was a vegetarian was during dinner at my grandparents’ house. Though, before I recall the exact moment, let me fill you in a little on the back-story.

My younger sister and I lived with my maternal grandparents for several years during our childhood because our parents divorced when I was 4 years old. Up until then, our parents had raised us as vegetarians. So, while our parents got their lives back on track after the divorce, they thought it would be best for us to live in a stable environment. My grandma is an excellent cook, but to her meat is considered something you eat at every meal. For that reason, I had to hide my dislike of meat while I lived with them.

Soon after we moved in to my grandparents’ house, we were served pasta with meat sauce for dinner. This was the first time a meat dish had been served to me and (to a young Binary Blonde, at least ;-) ) it was something altogether gag-worthy. I remember staring at the little bits of ground beef covered with marinara sauce like it was oozing blood. I was appalled and refused to eat it. My stubbornness was not appreciated and I was told by my grandma that I was to eat what was put in front of me or I would go to bed hungry.

Since I didn’t like her latter option, I did what any hungry vegetarian child would do in this situation: I meticulously picked out the bits of meat (hiding them in several napkins) and ate only the pasta. It took forever and I am sure my grandma suspected something, but she never said anything. I could have just given in and eaten the meat-sauce, but I didn’t. I couldn’t bring myself to. That was the moment I knew I was a vegetarian by choice and I have been ever since.

Scientifically speaking, I’m not sure if certain people are hard wired to be vegetarian, but if there is such a thing as a “meat-hating brain” or “vegetable-loving taste buds”, than I most certainly have them.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Lauren November 15, 2007 at 8:56 am

This is so funny because my family loves meat and one day when I was 10 I just didn’t eat it any more. I became aware what I was doing about a week later and declared my self a vegetarian! My mom found this alarming and said I needed to choose to eat chicken or fish. My hatred of fish over powered my decision and I decided i would only eat white meat chicken when necessary. I have been the same way ever since. I try not to eat chicken at all anymore, but I think if I stopped completely my husband would freak. He is just now after 7 years of dating becoming used to me not choosing meat over veggies! I know what you mean about some people just being wired for vegetables, I really can’t get enough of them!

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Cody November 15, 2007 at 4:10 pm

I knew from a very young age that I didn’t like the idea of eating meat, but for some reason I didn’t realize just not eating it was a viable option until my late teens. I am just flat-out amazed by kids who can make the decision and stick with it.

I do imagine that some of the… hippyism has to be hard-wired. I certainly didn’t get it from my family or friends.

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Binary Blonde November 17, 2007 at 9:44 pm

Lauren – That’s so cool that you knew you were a vegetarian at a young age. My husband gave up beef and pork when we married, but still eats white meat chicken, turkey and fish. I feel that any conscious choice about what food you eat is great, whether you choose vegetarian or not!

Cody – Haha! “Hippyism” is too funny! Yeah, I think liking veggies over meat must be hard-wired, because most of my family eats meat and doesn’t think twice about it.

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