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I was on my way to the school that afternoon. I saw a goat was being slaughtered that afternoon. The goat cried, and I saw tears came out from its eye. It was the sacrifice festival day for the Muslim. I lived in a small village, Bagansiapiapi, Indonesia. We all know that the majority of Indonesian is Muslim.
The memory of the crying goat keep coming to my mind that night, and I couldn’t sleep well. I asked my mom why they must be killed like that. My mom said that it was normal to kill animals for food. I couldn’t agree with this.
“I don’t want to eat meat; I want to be a vegetarian.” I told my mom. My mom laughed at me. “No, you should eat meat, everyone eat meat in the world. You must eat meat to keep healthy.” I was only a small boy then. I was 10 years old only, and I couldn’t do anything when my mom said NO.
I tried to become a vegetarian but my parent forced me to eat meat. And I couldn’t do anything. Time passed, and every year I saw the same scene where goats were being slaughtered during the sacrifice festival. I am very sad; I can do nothing for it.
When I was 15 years old, I saw the same thing happened again, I told my parent again that I wanted to be vegetarian. But it was still all the same, they didn’t allow me. I thought, I was 15 years old and I had my right to choose my own lifestyle. I cooked for myself, and insisted on going vegetarian. One month later, I decided to be vegan. It was very hard for me by that time. My father kept telling me that being vegetarian would be very hard for me when I went to work, when I was out with friends, and others.
I was only 18 years old, and my father got a high blood pressure. He couldn’t work and couldn’t afford my further study in a university. I must find a job to help my family economic. I had one brother who was still on junior high school. I decided to go to Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, and found a job there.
Years went by, I proved my father that as a vegan, I was not getting difficult to find a job, not getting difficult to be in society. And I can afford my family till today. And now, both my mother and father have followed my way to become a vegetarian. They decided to become a vegetarian too. I am Xiao Kang, and I am proud to be vegan.
PS. If every one of us inspired ONE person to go meatless imagine the difference we could make in ten years time. I am going to collect inspirational vegetarian/vegan stories to share with everyone. If you think your story will inspire others, please share with me by sending it to email@example.com. I will post your stories on www.veglov.com blog. I believe everyone has his/her own story, I think it must be great when we can share our stories and inspire others. Let’s make the world a better place. ~ Xiao Kang.