Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I'm a turkey mama!

It's official!

Thanksgiving is a tough holiday for me this year.  It's my third Thanksgiving not eating turkey but my first as a full-fledged vegan.  Now some may say I'm a bad vegan because I am doing the unthinkable.

As hostess of our Thanksgiving dinner this year, I made the decision to have a dead bird on my table.

The thought of it makes me a little ill and I'm thankful Dr. D. has agreed to cook the bird as I can't bear the thought of touching it.  However, I decided to go ahead with a traditional Thanksgiving for one reason.


I know most of my family would not attend my Thanksgiving feast unless a turkey is served.  This left me with two choices: not serve turkey and have my family go elsewhere (where a bird will lose its life anyway) or suck it up and serve a turkey so my family can enjoy each others' company.  Having my family in my home for the holiday will also ensure that the side dishes are all vegan; this would not happen if we went elsewhere.

There is no argument, it was a tough decision to make and not a very popular one with the vegan members of my family but I know in my heart it's the right thing to do.

I have already planned out the rest of the meal.  Many of the traditional Thanksgiving side dishes are naturally vegan and making those which are not naturally vegan into plant-based dishes will be fairly easy to pull off such as using Earth Balance in recipes calling for butter and making stuffing in a pan.  There are so many wonderful vegan side dishes that no one will feel they are sacrificing and I may even surprise some people at how amazing vegan food is!

Do I feel guilty?  You bet!  To alleviate some of my guilt, I adopted a turkey through Farm Sanctuary's Adopt a Turkey project.  I had a choice of turkeys to adopt and settled on this handsome fella I met when we visited Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen earlier this fall.

Turpentine Turkey

Isn't he sweet?  He's even "Facebook Famous" as my kids like to say.

For $30 I was able to make a donation to this outstanding organization and help them in their cause to rescue farm animals and care for them at one of their three locations.  I acknowledge it doesn't do anything to help the turkey who will be served in my home that day but it can help lots of others.  

So Turpentine will be part of our Thanksgiving this year but he won't be covered in gravy (or have bread shoved up his butt).  He'll be there in spirit to remind all of us that a turkey is someone and not something.  I know I'll be doing right by my family and doing my best for the animals.

As one of my favorite authors, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau says:

"Being vegan is about doing the best we can in this imperfect world. It’s not about being perfect or pure. If we lose sight of that, if we treat veganism as the end rather than the means, then we’ll not only drive ourselves crazy, we’ll also forget what being vegan is all about."

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Very well written. I give you credit, Chris.