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About six weeks ago our middle man, who is 5, asked for our attention while we were all traveling home as a family after a camping/hockey weekend. He was very serious, and knowing our kids, both go smiles on our faces, expecting something very clever or entertaining to follow. What did follow, in and of itself, was not surprising, but it was much sooner than anticipated.

MM – It upsets me to eat meat. I don’t want animals to die so that I can eat them.

Me – Okay so what are you telling me?

MM – I don’t want to eat it [meat] anymore.

Me – If you don’t feel comfortable eating meat you don’t have to. It’s your body and you are in charge of your body. Do you want to stop eating it all together?

MM – No meat. I never want to eat it again.

Now the hubby and I talked about what he was okay and not okay with eating. We didn’t know if he wanted to avoid all animal products and become a vegan, or if he was comfortable with some products. He felt that being a ‘general vegetarian’ was what would work best for him. He even explained to me how our chicken at the time (may she rest in peace, she died of natural causes) eggs were not fertilized and would no become a chicken if left for her to sit on them. The roosters had already gone to the coop in the sky the year before.

Hubby went on to talk to him about how he and I would still be hunting and that most of the household would still be consuming meat at meal times. Now regularly for us is maybe four meal with meat, four containing eggs, and the occasional cheese product, so as compared to the average American table, not that much. Now you figure in at least two of the four meats are fish or crustaceans, which he has decided he is okay with eating.

We knew this day was coming. MM has such an understanding and closeness with animals and nature that we knew one day he would not want them to loose their life so that he could eat. The first couple weeks we had to really focus on helping him make meatless choices when we went out or were at another’s home, due to all in one type of dishes. Now, he has it all under control himself.

MM will order from the menu at a restaurant and request that the salad not include the chicken, or will ask when the server takes our drink order if they have veggie patties or meat substitutes available. Most times he is then asked how old he is. It really is funny, he will answer with, “I’m 5, he’s 6 and he’s 2 [while pointing at his bros], and I’m a vegetarian.” He has had the occasional person ask him why he doesn’t want to eat meat and he can very clearly explain to them why. I have had the occasional person, not server, ask me why I don’t make him eat meat…and I have to admit the first time I answered with something like, his body his choice, which is true, but it wasn’t the best answer all around since most people do not understand self-ownership. What I thought about and use now is this, “food is meant to nourish our bodies, enabling them to grow and function at their best, his diet fulfills it’s purpose. By not eating meat he feels like he is allowing even one animal to take a breath for a bit longer, and to me it is worth every single separate meal I have to prepare.”

Little Man, 2, has now started to ask for meatless meals at times. When asked why, “It makes me sad to eat.” MM may have started a trend.

I’m so happy to see first hand that my children know they have a choice in how they impact the world. They have a voice and that voice will be heard by their father and by me.

I LOVE comments!

Let me know what you think or any recipes or advice that you are looking for.

Peace Love…Dreams

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