At lunch today, a coworker looked at my plate of Rambutans and Lychees, and was shocked because I didn’t know where they were grown! She said, “I can’t believe you don’t know where your food comes from!” She was eating pizza covered in meat and cheese (no veggies) dripping with a bright orange oil. I held my tongue and bit my lip so hard as the words immediately whipped into my head and into my mouth, “Do YOU know where YOUR food comes from?! ?
I was so close to actually saying that… my eyes got wide as I swallowed the beginnings of an abrasive not-so-office-appropriate come-to-Jesus moment. Whew!!!! I took a deep breath and replied calmly instead with a more socially appropriate tone “Um… tropical trees likely from somewhere tropical. Not sure where the exact location is, but I definitely know they come from trees!” ?
Oh goodness, please don’t go there with me in the work place… I’m trying so hard to behave kindly. It doesn’t always happen! I tend to return the same tones and intensity that come in my direction. Whoops! ? I can’t throw down too much truth all at once or else they will shut down and run away in fear! Gently!!! Easy does it! Take back your emotional control.
Later on, we had another brief round of their anti-vegan sentiment about how annoying and unhealthy those “other vegans” are (but they say they don’t mean me, because I am one of the few acceptable ones to them, because I’m SO different!). ?
“How are vegans even alive?” someone blurted out somewhat sarcastically. I laughed and finally added to the convo that according to so many people, I shouldn’t even be alive as a raw vegan fruitarian. Or I should at the very least be protein deficient and sickly skinny. I’m so thankful to be made aware of my issues and that I should actually be dead! (heavy sarcasm) I don’t know what I’d do if I wasn’t made aware that I’m not living up to these deadly expectations! ?
They laughed at my sarcasm conveying how those ideas were, indeed, totally absurd. So hopefully I’m continuing my subtle planting of seeds and can change some perspectives here. Give it time, patience, and continuous exposure. I’m going to let it marinate in the back of their minds and normalize positive veganism with daily reinforcement. ?
In other news, I also nearly got fired today because I’m not caught up on Game of Thrones. It’s being added to my job description that I HAVE to get current… or else… ? See, aside from the standard silliness of unconscious social conditioning and unintentional Cognitive Dissonance, it’s actually a really fun place to work. They truly have no idea what they sound like from this side of the fence. ? I can’t help but continue to believe that they are TRYING to understand. A little bit at a time.