Take 2 MooDonna - Choose Kindness for yourself and Ultimately the Animals
I wasn’t really being kind …
About 5 years ago I got very focused on being intentional about who I am in the world. I decided that being Kind was one of my main intentions along with be love and be present.
When I started sharing this with friends, I got a lot of feedback about how kind I already was. But I didn’t feel that way. I was nice, kind seemed like something I could learn to do better.
So I did an assessment about where I was kind. I looked inside and out and came up with some very clear areas to attend to. I realized that I had been taught to be kind … but that kindness was narrow. It included humans and animals I was familiar with. Anyone I had a visual of.
I was really unkind to myself. That was a great start to see that. And when I looked at all the places my energy went I saw how one step away I was directly engaged in lots of un-kindness, and normalized abuse and neglect. Ouch! When I followed my money, I saw my purchases were supporting clothing that was treating women and the environment like they didn’t matter so I stopped that. Then I saw that while I had been primarily “vegetarian” for 20 years, I started to see the direct harm I was financing when I bought cheese and products with dairy hidden inside.
Funny how lessons come at the right time. MooDonna arrived one day at the farm just as I was really asking myself to be honest about who I am and how much my choices mattered. She was a beautiful dairy cow who was so obviously sad and suffering.
MooDonna changed my whole life, I wish she knew that. In one day, I stopped eating any animal products because whether I wanted to see it or not, I was the direct cause of numerous animals suffering. NOT KIND. Nor was it kind to myself to keep pretending I wasn’t part of the problem.
MooDonna spent her life as a dairy cow, kept pregnant – do you know the machine that impregnates them is called a rape machine. I almost threw up when I heard that. Babies are removed and separated right after pregnancy just so the farmer can capture their milk … somehow growing up in suburbia I never put together that milk only comes from pregnant cows. I literally never thought about it. I was contributing to this suffering for mothers and babies day after day.
She was going to be slaughtered because she wasn’t going to be profitable anymore – another kicker she was pregnant! She was going to be slaughtered while pregnant. This is actually common practice. (Gratefully, she was brought to the farm where she changed my life and received so much love for the end of her life.)
So, she delivered a baby at the farm who died right there. It was awful. Heartbreaking and she was devastated. This was like the 12th baby she had not been able to mother. Imagine birthing 12 babies that were taken away and now this one died. This poor lady and millions like her suffered because we like the pleasure of ice cream, butter, cheese, etc. Treated like machines.
Sound a bit dramatic? Well, that day I realized it wasn’t. It was just the truth of what I had been part of.
MooDonna lived and got to be foster mother to our baby cow Norman for maybe a year before she ultimately died of disease. She was a great mother and friend to our goats but she never did really get too close to us humans. She seemed emotionally spent.
MooDonna woke me up in the big picture sense. She showed me directly how I could truly be kind. It wasn’t just in words to other humans or actions but in all of our choices we can follow the results of our choices.
I am kind to myself now. I actively appreciate myself every time I chose to eat or buy something that won’t harm an animal or human as a result. It feels good. Choosing kindness was a life changer. Moodonna taught me to question my beliefs about my need for cheese. The world is now filled with vegan replacements. I have zero excuse to not be kind.