Save the Whales Kerry
I have been an animal lover all my life and Pagan. My sisters nicknamed me “Save the Whales Kerry” at a very young age. I was always bringing animals home and cried if I saw a dead animal that had been hit by a car and I always fed my meat to the dog after everyone left the dinner table.
I have always had an issue with eating meat. But I was pretty much forced to eat it as a child. I was made to sit at the table until my plate was clear and I would sneak the food to the floor for the dogs.
Due to peer pressure or if my mom cooked a special meal, I’d eat it. During Basic Training, I lost so much weight the Drill Sergeants made me show them my tray before and after a meal so to make sure I was eating. I became what I learned later was referred to as a Vegan while still in the Army. Vegan is a term that I had not heard about until a few years back. I went back and forth from being vegetarian to being vegan to eating seafood and chicken until I got home from Germany and was able to remain vegetarian and mostly vegan for 7 years. I developed what my Doctor called “Reactive Glycemia” and was “ordered” to start eating meat again because I was eating too many carbohydrates and not enough protein. I felt like crap most of the time and was not a nice person. I ate mostly eggs for protein, which was bad because I had genetically high cholesterol, at the time, I didn’t know this fact. Every time I ate meat, I felt guilty and ended up sick to my stomach. Because I saw a dead animal and then heard in my head what the Dr. said “you are going to end up sick if you don’t eat meat.” because. Now I know better. The Pagan in me that swore to protect the Earth and all the creatures on it was rearing its head and I could not have been happier. I had a Dr. recently tell my daughter that her son had no immune system because he was vegan. Ha, NO. He has no immune system because hadn’t been exposed to illness until he started daycare. They fact that he bounced back so quickly from those illnesses is because he is health.
For years I had debated on doing research because of being vegetarian and knowing that my journey was not complete. I didn’t do the research. Partly because my I figured the Dr knew better, even though my body and soul was telling me quite the opposite. Then Jodi and I became good friends (we had known each other a few years before). She and her husband had been “vegan” for a year when I became good friends with them. The more I talked to her about it, the more I realized that is my chosen Path and I want to be on it. A year later I decided to it. I had been vegan before; but know I knew the term for it. I could not validate calling myself an animal lover or Activist and then slap one on my plate and eat it for dinner. I could not call myself an Earth Activist if I was contributing to its destruction. And I could not call myself a good Pagan if I didn’t honor all creatures and allow them to live in Peace and Harmony. I didn’t want to kill the animal and I certainly did not want to pay someone to do it for me. That just didn’t make sense to me. Not to mention the damage that it does to the environment and the health benefits from being vegan if it is done right. Jodi gave me all the advice that she could and I went shopping for food. That was in 2009. I have since done more research on my own, now that I am aware of it.
My son who was born in 2002 is vegan, grandson who was born in 2009 is vegan and my daughter who was born in 1990 is mostly vegetarian. My husband who is still in the Military is a meat eater. He is gone a great deal. I am not sure how we are going to do this when he does get home and retires from the Army but we will figure something out.
I live in a farming community. Vegans are rare around here, but the number is increasing. My coworkers and most of my family have been supportive, even if they do not understand.
I am beyond healthy now. All the weight that I couldn’t get off after my son was born (I had him at 34) is gone. I have so much energy now, my head is clear, my NEW Doctor reduced my Cholesterol medication to half of what it was, and I even have her eating Tofu now. I can keep up with my son and grandson and am working out again. I feel great spiritually, mentally and physically.
I have been mentoring folks in Veganism now for about 2 years. I love it. It is very fulfilling and rewarding. Just knowing that I helped to change somones life for the better, saved lives, helped make the environment healthier and cleared someones’ spiritual skeltons makes me realize over and over again, that I am on the right path.