Advice to my Younger Vegan Self

(German version below)

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The vegan lifestyle changed me that’s for sure. I had many ups and downs but I would never change my mind because it became a part of me that I love. It feels like since I became vegan something started to blossom inside of me and I’m so inspired and happy especially these days!
Thinking back I saw veganism not as a part of me only, I totally identified myself with it specifically at the very beginnig.
According to this some people also regarded me more as “the vegan girl” instead as Louisa – including myself. At first I felt okay with it eventually everything was so new and exciting for me. But over time this turned out the be a big problem as I tried to live the perfect plant-based lifestyle and to fulfill the expectations of other people. Which is absolutely impossible since everyone has different opinions on how a vegan should live and on his/her limits, and that’s fine!
After really long conversations with my best friend I realized that this frustrated me and that I’m not just the vegan girl, I’m myself – Louisa. I have my own expectations and opinions on this toppic and I do my best to turn my thoughts into reality. Finally the plant-based lifestyle was a personal choice which I’ve made because it feels right and makes me happy. And not because I want to become a perfect vegan.
If I have had the ability to tell my younger self some advice when I became plant-based, I would have reminded myself that veganism is not my identity. It reflects part of the way I think, a way which completes me ♥

 

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Source: Instagram (bohobeautifullife)

 

Der vegane Lebensstil hat mich verändert, das steht außer Frage. Ich hatte Hoch- und Tiefpunkte, aber dennoch würde ich diesen Schritt niiiie rückgängig machen, weil er einfach zu einem festen Teil von mir geworden ist; Welcher damals angefangen hat etwas in mir aufblühen zu lassen und mich gerade heute mit so viel Inspiration und Freude erfüllt!
Wenn ich allerdings eine Weile zurückdenke, da habe ich den Veganismus nicht nur als Teil von mir angesehen, sondern mich innerlich voll und ganz damit identifiziert, insbesondere ganz am Anfang.
Dementsprechend haben mich manche auch eher mehr als “die Veganerin” anstatt als Louisa angesehen – auch ich selbst. Was ich anfangs auch nicht schlimm gefunden habe, schließlich war alles noch so neu und aufregend. Mit der Zeit hat mich das jedoch immer mehr an den Gedanken gefesselt, die perfekte pflanzlichen Lebensweise führen und die Ansprüche der anderen erfüllen zu müssen; was natürlich gar nicht möglich ist. Schließlich hat jeder andere Ansichten, wie man als Veganer leben sollte und wo die Grenzen sind, was auch total okay ist!
Nach langen Gesprächen mit meiner besten Freundin ist mir bewusst geworden, dass mich das sehr frustriert und ich nicht nur die Veganerin sein will, sondern einfach nur ich selbst – Louisa. Mit meinen eigenen Meinungen und Vorstellungen zu dem Thema, welche ich so gut in Tat umsetzen will als nur möglich. Letztendlich habe ich den Lebensstil ja aus einer persönlicher Überzeugung für mich gewählt, weil es sich richtig anfühlt und um glücklicher zu sein. Und nicht um ein perfekter Veganer zu werden.
Wenn ich meinem früheren, noch ganz neuem Veganer-Ich einen Rat geben könnte, würde ich mich vermutlich daran erinnern, dass der Veganismus nicht meine Identität bestimmt, sondern einen Teil meines Denkens und meiner Einstellung wiederspiegelt, der mich zu einem Ganzen macht ♥

Much Love,
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7 thoughts on “Advice to my Younger Vegan Self

  1. Just stumbled upon your blog and this post, and honestly I already respect you so much. I’ve been vegan for nearly 2 years now, and it was so hard to try and explain to my family how this was my choice, there wasn’t really a true exact ‘reason’ behind it, it was just something that I chose to do for myself.I had so many people ask if I was doing it because i wanted to ‘lose weight’ or because i was ‘anorexic’ and it just annoyed me to no end. It took a while for my friends to understand, however many of them accepted right away.. despite most of them forgetting every single time we went to eat out aha. It was difficult, and it took time, but now most people have accepted it. It’s just hard to try and get people to understand, that just because I’ve chosen this, doesn’t mean that I’m a completely different person, or that i have a different ‘label’. I’m still me. Just a better version of me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh that’s so nice of you thank you a lot! 🙂 I really do feel you! It’s so hard if people don’t accept what you do, especially if some don’t even try to understand your choice. But it makes me happy to hear that your friends and family accepted this change in your life now! It’s so much more fun if you can share your experiences and happiness with other people. I love your last few sentences, you’re so right.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for posting this. I’m not vegan or even vegetarian, but I started following you because I feel love and respect for those pathways. I try to be vegetarian at least, and I’ve struggled more with the identity issues that you describe than the diet itself. For me, the diet is easy enough. I work as a firefighter, though, and we do communal meals. When trying to eat vegan and/or vegetarian I’d often find myself cooking meat for everyone else and then eating a handful of raw oats at 10pm, because I ran out of time to cook the meal I brought for myself. The endless ridicule gets tiresome too. The hardest part, though, is really being completely alone. People will watch me prepare a veggie and hummus sandwich (my favorite lunch) only to stop what they are doing and lecture me on their new fad diet. The diet itself is the easiest part. Being labeled and ridiculed is hard. Keep posting-you are my rock 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally do understand you. The diet itself is not complicated, it’s the social aspect that makes it quite hard sometimes since you start to feel kind of lonely. I made this experience with some people too, especially with those who didn’t even try to understand what I’m doing. But as long as you feel comfortable with what you do and you try to do your best – even if you’re not always eating vegan food – it’s fine. In general it’s better to be an “unperfect” but happy vegan than a person who doesn’t do anything at all 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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