We had been dating for half the year.
We met the night of her birthday... and were pretty much in a relationship from then on. Sometimes you just immediately click with someone. She was fiery, feisty, and didn't take the sh*t from me that other girls did. I liked that. For those that don't understand, a woman with a backbone is extremely sexy. It's the reasons why dominatrixes get paid thousands to spank and slap around high-powered CEOs. Anyways, my lady and I were headed towards the altar. She had all those qualities men traditionally like in a woman. Tall, but not too tall. Thin, but not too thin. She liked to workout, but not obsessively. We would cook each other dinner, and when she came home and I was there -- she had sheer joy on her face when she looked at me. I had never experienced wanting to see someone all the time. She had me, and I had her, and we were all each other needed.
Then the unthinkable happened...
One night, on one of the few nights I wasn't there, a video popped up on YouTube. It was titled '101 Reasons..' or something (I have since found out that it was '101 Reasons To Go Vegan'. I swear, if it had been any other day or week, I'd have left it alone. But she and I had just talked about going vegetarian for a while -- just for a cleanse. So I clicked it... and everything changed. One video turned to two, then three... then 10. And by the time I knew it -- I was vegan. It really was that quick. Like a switch being flipped because I was so amazed at what I saw. I tried my best not to cry. But it was no use. Tears just flowed from my face. Hours later I called my girl and told her what I'd been doing and watching. I was excited and sad at the same time. It was late, and she was sleepy -- so I could see why she wasn't as fired up as I was. So I couldn't wait to talk to her the next day.
I couldn't sleep
I didn't sleep very well that night, but I still woke up with the same vigor and enthusiasm. I went to the kitchen and threw away all the meat and dairy I could find. I was ready. I texted my girl a few more times about veganism. Her responses were short, but it was because she was at work... or so I told myself.
I couldn't wait to get off work.
I skipped the gym and went straight to my girl's house. I told her in person how excited I was. She feigned interest and excitement, but... it wasn't what I thought it'd be, or what I was feeling. She was more excited when I told her about my new job weeks before. The vibe was a little strange as we ate the stuffed peppers I'd made. 'What's going on?' I asked her. And she came clean. She had no interest in going vegan. She had had a bad experience with a vegan once before, and they were just 'too out there'. 'But what about all the links to videos and information I sent you?', I asked. I couldn't watch it she said. It was too violent.
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The next few days we tried more and more to talk about it, but to no avail -- she wasn't going to go vegan -- or even consider it.
Everything that we had built together previously, crumbled that week. I resented her for not understanding my why, and she resented me for such a dramatic change and expecting that much of her. 'Why couldn't I just go back to before?' But it was too late. I was forever changed.
The night it all ended was an emotional one. We had barely seen each other the past few weeks. But the crazy thing was- when I hugged her, I still felt love for her. We talked a bit about things that didn't really matter, as we awkwardly danced around the elephant in the room. Then finally I said, 'I'm not the same guy anymore, and I can't just go back to how things were.' I asked her why she wouldn't just consider it... slowly to start. But she just couldn't. It was too hard. And that was it. We were done.
The moral of the story
I thought I had everything I ever wanted in her and I'm sure she did as well. But when it came to a decision on whether to keep things the way they were or stand tall, I took the harder, less traveled road. I'm not going to pretend like I don't miss her, because I do -- all the time. But there are some times when personal sacrifice is a defining moment in life. And this is mine. I love compassion more than anything on this planet. And would make the same decision again if I had to. I'll find another amazing woman. Only this time, she'll be vegan. Or at least she'll be open to it. I hope my former girl comes around because what we had was amazing. Until then, I just have to focus on getting better at being vegan, and life in general.
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