As much as my own diet has been very different over the past couple of weeks, my family's diet has been very much the same. I make them dinner and if I can use any "pieces and parts" for my separate vegan, gluten-free meal, that's a plus.
The ironic thing is that my kids would rather eat vegetables than meat. I can't tell you how many battles we've had in the past which revolved around the theme, "Eat your meat. You need meat for protein to get big and strong."
At age four, Spiderman engages in mealtime battle because, well, he's four and he's trying to figure out where he has control and where he doesn't. We do the whole "here are your choices" thing, but he's so onto us.
Miss M. would genuinely prefer not to eat meat most of the time. To say she is an "animal lover" is an understatement. This is a child who saves part of her allowance and her yard sale earnings to make donations to the World Wildlife Fund. As I type this, I'm feeling guilty for not being more respectful of her wishes. And yet, prior to this cleanse, I really thought I was doing the right thing.
Tonight started out with our usual pre-dinner "veggie plate" ritual. In this case, cucumber spears and sliced red bell peppers. Usually it's just whatever I happen to have on hand (carrots, snap peas, etc). It keeps the kids from getting too hungry while I get my act together and they love it.
For their dinner I planned chicken breast tenders, broccoli and "smiley" potatoes. Miss M. asked (as she almost always does), "Do I have to eat chicken?"
I replied, "Nope. If you want, you can eat some extra broccoli and some edamame." You should have seen the look on her face.
"Really??" she asked suspiciously.
I explained that I still wanted her to get protein but I am learning we can get protein from non-animal sources. And that veggies with protein have lots of other good stuff too.
Knowing Miss M. as I do, I was excited to discuss this with her in great scientific detail, bond over her excitement about not being forced to eat meat, maybe even Google something together. Instead, all I got was, "Okay - cool." She left the room with a "beats me" shrug.
Either her pre-teen is already showing or she just wanted to quit while she was ahead. I'm not sure.
Of course I'll do more research but I'm starting to think that this plan may have a positive effect on more than just my own wellness.