No Matter What.
|Photo © Joanna Wilson Photography.|
It's been an interesting, growth-filled year and a half out here. I remember living most of 2009 and half of 2010 dividing my time between blogging and babysitting, with acting on the back burner. I was churning out a post every other day and was so happy to be sharing a compassionate message to a growing audience. An opportunity to meet Alicia Silverstone came along, my readership continued to get larger and stronger, and I was at the precipice of a grand life decision - do I continue on solely as an animal activist, or do I divide my time between my original love of acting and this new passion of mine? Ultimately, I've found that living as 75% actress/25% animal activist is my sweet spot. A great life choice for Lindsay - not so great for my amazing KMIV readers who were used to checking out new posts every week.
|Photo © Michael Bartelle.|
Today, Steve and I visited The Gentle Barn in Santa Clarita, CA. I learned about Gentle Barn through Ellen DeGeneres about a year ago and have wanted to visit ever since. Highlights of my day included listening to a poignant speech by Gentle Barn founder Ellie Laks, getting to know an adorable pig named Linus, and petting an Emu named Yoda (my first Emu!). But nothing compared to the nap I experienced. Let me explain - today, in my lap, for a good twenty minutes or so, laid Ellen, a rescued turkey at The Gentle Barn. Named after THE Ellen herself, this lovely lady was originally slated to be someone's turkey dinner a couple of years back, but thankfully she was rescued in the nick of time by activist and Thanking the Monkey author Karen Dawn and immediately placed into Gentle Barn's care. Thriving and beautiful now, Ellen's favorite pastime is getting close enough to people so that she can sleep on them. The way to get her to sit with you? Sit down on the ground near her and slowly give her a big, big hug.
|Ellen and me sharing a really good snuggle.|
Today, Ellie said in her opening speech,
|A sleeping Ellen.|
That one simple sentence tugged at my heart in a way that left me breathless upon hearing it. We are different, yet we are the same. No matter what our skin color, what our gender, whether we have feathers or fur - inside, we are the same.
I couldn't agree more.
Ellie's words and my time with Ellen the turkey are still sitting with me hours later as I write this, because they have renewed within me the strength and resolve to continue sharing the profound benefits of living vegan in this day and age. As most to all of us no longer need a single animal product to survive, purchasing and/or eating them (and their milk, eggs, fur, feathers... you get the idea ) is now a luxury, and one that is selfish at best. I know this is a bold statement, and I say it with full respect for anyone reading my words who has not yet transitioned to vegan living. Why? Because I used to stand where you are standing. I used to call myself an animal lover and then happily go eat a quarter pounder from McDonald's. I used to look at vegan pamphlets in the subway and laugh at the absurdity of giving up my chicken fried steak. I - Lindsay the happy vegan blogger - used to think vegans were weird, extreme people. But life has a funny way of showing you who you truly are if you let it. And all along, the animal lover within me was begging to be fully realized. All along, I was a deep down vegan. I just needed the jump start to get me going.
|Steve and Tulip the hen at Gentle Barn.|
(And on the off chance you happen to, email me and we can chat about it.)
To to sum up this post, I say:
Today is your day!
You're off to great places,
You're off and away!
You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You’re on your own.
And you know what you know.
And YOU are the one
who’ll decide where to go.
- Dr. Seuss
Need your own jump start? Check out my "Three Steps for Going Vegan" page for resources, read old posts on this blog, and finally, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. While I'm a super busy gal, I will do my very best to reach back out to each and every one of you.