Here are just a few of the reasons I’m really happy to have a vegan toddler:
1) Cooking his food isn’t a stressful experience of making sure we cook it to kill all the bacteria or sterilizing every cutting board, knife, etc. Today LP grabbed a bit of collard green and stuck it in his mouth. This was not the end of the world, but raw chicken meat would have been another story.
2) I don’t worry about “hiding” the vegetables in my kid’s food (a la Jessica Seinfeld). We all eat vegetables in our house, and enjoy them. LP’s dinner tonight included sauteed green beans with garlic, sesame seeds and sesame oil, and he couldn’t get enough.
3) No other animals had to give up their lives or their milk (meant for their children) in order to feed my child. This part of being vegan (the ethical part) took on a whole new meaning for me when I was nursing LP and thought about someone else taking away the breastmilk I pumped for a third party. It seemed like a bad idea to me then, and I honestly don’t get how doing it to a cow is ok if it sounds kind of yucky for me.
4) Have you ever smelled the diaper of a baby who just started eating meat (or has a milk allergy)? It’s bad. I’m not saying LP smells like a rose, but it’s never been as bad as some of the other diapers I have smelled.
5) Watching my kid thrive as he runs around, dances, plays with his toys and hugs other kids is the most amazing thing in the world. This has nothing to do with him being vegan – most other kids are like this. But there is something nice about him thriving this way on a healthful, plant-based diet that doesn’t involve the death of any animals.
Full discourse: I did not grow up vegan or vegetarian and I turned out fine. I don’t want to sound preachy, and I think a lot of the things I listed hear could apply to non-vegan families. But these are just the aspects of my life as a mom are tied into our vegan lifestyle.
Our little dude continues to be busy. He is thoroughly enjoying spring by running around outside when he and the G-man take walks around the block. Today he jumped in puddles left from the morning rain, and also sat in some mud. Talk about a red letter day! He is still taking two naps a day. Sometimes it seems like we should transition him to one, but he really seems to need these naps since he never stops moving when he is awake. So, since we have the luxury of the G-man being home, we’ll continue to let LP get his beauty sleep in two naps a day.