Thursday, August 17, 2006

Today, I Cheated

Ice cream and I have a weird relationship. I don't like ice cream, yet I find myself craving it a couple times a year, like mad. Before I became vegan, this was an easy itch to scratch, I'd usually just pick up a pint or two, eat a couple bites, then let the rest sit in my freezer until it became an unrecognizable mass of ice, then I'd throw it out. Now, however, is a different story. I've tried filling my void with soy ice cream, to no avail. I do like soy ice cream, but the flavors available are severely limited. And, quite honestly, anything besides vanilla usually needs a lot of help to even pass for edible.

Recently my local Chick-Fil-A started carrying milk shakes. These tempting treats constantly stare me in the face when I take the boys for their weekly treat of fries, a fruit cup, and lemonade. And every week, I fight the urge to try one. Mainly because I would never be able to justify getting one in front of the boys. And with Bob being allergic to milk, it just seemed like a pretty mean thing to do, not to mention confusing considering our vegan lifestyle.

Just to let you know how much I craved those suckers, as soon as Bumpo started school, I started to plot and plan. It took two weeks, but I finally figured out a day that I'd be all alone, and out doing my errands. It took awhile, because as it turns out, Tim is usually here with me in the mornings. However, today was the day. I got my much sought after milk shake. And, like usual, it sucked. The best part about the entire shake was the whipped cream and cherry on top. So, $3.00 and a couple sips later, and I am once again reassured that being a vegan is the right choice for me.

Now, for all you vegans out there who think I'm just horrible for doing this, I say kiss my. . . Well you know. I don't personally know a single vegan who hasn't stepped outside the guidelines a couple times, either because it was easier, or out of curiosity. I would never eat meat again, that is one line I will not cross. However, if I'm out with some friends at dinner, and there happens to be a little bit of cheese on my salad, or a little bit of egg in my friend's birthday cake, I don't freak out. If I spent that much time worrying about what I ate, that even going out with my friends became a huge chore, what would be the point in living? So, instead of resenting my life choice, I choose to do the best I can at home, but when an event arises where there are no other choices, I weigh my options. I can either, sit there while everyone else has an enjoyable meal, or I can find something on the menu that I can fit to my dietary needs as closely as possible, and enjoy the meal. I happen to think that this way of going about things is pretty healthy, mentally speaking. It's also more likely to make for a lifelong vegan, instead of one who flops back and forth. If I can say that I've tested the waters, and yet I still feel that the choice I made is the best for me, then isn't there something to be said for that? Or should I just be chastised among my vegan colleague because of my choice to, very seldomely, maybe once a year, try a little cheese or dairy?