You be you. I’ll be me.

by Ashley on February 6, 2011

Recently, I’ve decided to just let go… of meat, poultry, etc. that is.  The bad out weights the good for me, and I’ve decided to give it up for good.  There are many factors than went into my decision and the best part is, it’s just that, my decision.  After forgoing animal protein in December, it wasn’t that I felt too much different but I did feel better.

Knowing were my food came from is one of the most important things for me and this has a lot to do with my decision.  I try so hard to buy local, organic produce but then I walk over to the meat cooler and look for a package that either says, “USDA Certified Organic” which I trust or if I’m in Statesboro and don’t have that luxury for anything that says, “Grass Fed,” or “Raised without antibiotics and hormones.”  Why should I trust that?  When they slap the word “Natural” on a product it means nothing, so do these words hold true either?  Who was there when the handling of the animal took place to see that there were no antibiotics or hormones used?  Definitely not me.  But like I said, that’s my decision and I want it to effect no one else, not Dustin or my family.

I had never really seen into the meat industry until this past Tuesday when I watched (as many of you know I was more than excited to see this episode) Oprah as she and her staff went vegan for a week.  Reporter (and extraordinaire) Lisa Ling went into Cargill Meat Producing and showed us exactly what goes on.  This place is supposedly the cleanest, best producing plant in the US and I was still absolutely taken back.

As I watched the episode, my sister, Chelsea, shared our disgust and were in shock as we heard the noises because the camera couldn’t even show what was going on inside.

The first thing Dustin said was, “Nooo! Now your never going to cook meat again.”  In his head I knew he was thinking, “we’re going to have to eat all that vegetarian crap, like Lentil “Meat” Loaf.” But that’s not at all how I’m going to handle this situation because I know that it is my decision and no one elses’.

Last night, while trying to figure out what to do in this BOOMING town, Dustin said, “So what do you want to do tonight?” My reply, “Let’s grill out.”  ”Um, you won’t eat anything off the grill.”  Ohhh, yes I will!  Just because were grilling, doesn’t mean it has to be meat!

So last night this is how we did it.

Portabella Burger for me and a Double Cheese Burger for him (I made him two hamburger patties but he only wanted one bun, so he thought he would be so clever to make it into a Double Cheese…Just like McDonald’s, right Dust?)

“Be yourself.  Above all, let who you are, what you are, what you believe, shine through every sentence you write, every piece you finish.”

— John Jakes

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