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Digital Subscriptions > Vegan Life > January 2018 > I HAVE A DREAM


Charlotte Meyer Zu Natrup on her hope for the future… and it involves cake

A parent’s tale

My son can say only one word clearly, and that is ‘cake’. This is appropriate because this word is also very often his heart’s dearest wish.

As he approaches two, I am concerned that he is not speaking, or even trying to speak, as much as other children his age do. Most websites and other mothers tell me not to be anxious, that there is still time. However, I am his mother. At his birth I purchased a lifelong ticket entitling me to worry about him and so, worry I will.

That is not to say that he has been at all unproductive in his first years on earth. He has simply been spending his energy on other things. Growing tall, for instance. At the most recent regular doctor’s check-up, he measured as off the charts tall. He towers above his peers and is so lofty and broad-shouldered that I have to buy clothes for a fouryear- old boy, not for a 22-month-old toddler. Clearly, his time and energy have been poured into laying down the foundations of a future goliath, not with the mere fripperies of basic verbal interaction. And he is also very adept at communicating without words. He can put enormous amounts of animation and variety into pointing and emphasizing, and into the different tones and force behind his voice. With time I have learnt which gesture is for his toy trucks, favourite bunny or train or to signal that he is hungry, thirsty or in need of a nappy change. However, his attempts to speak are so rare that when he does speak a word, and his face lights up with the meaning of that word, it is a heart-warming sight.

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About Vegan Life

December is a tough act to follow and I do feel a little sorry for January, which seems to have the reputation as the dullest, coldest and most bleak month of the year; if the months of the year were being picked to play netball, January would probably be picked last… Traditionally, January is the month when people decide it’s time for a change and put their house on the market, change their job, dye their hair green or make ambitious New Year’s resolutions. Every January of my adult life I have tried, in vain, to change a habit or routine, like ridding myself of my unhealthy tea addiction or seeing friends more often. This year, with the help of a couple of articles in this issue, I have decided that this January I am not going to change a single thing — my motto this January is going to be ‘new year, same me’. We have some wonderful articles to help boost your mood, and your confidence, this January. Surrounded with pressure to lose weight and go on a health kick to get into shape for summer we have focused on body positivity in this issue. We have spoken to vegan body positive warrior Mica Day and argue that exercise should be a tool for enhancing mental health and wellbeing as much as physical health. To tie in with our special feature, Fat Gay Vegan has also written a fantastic piece on body shaming in the vegan sphere, which I enjoyed immensely. January is also a great month for reflecting on how far we have come as a community. More people than ever are coming to the realisation that the way that we are treating most animals is wrong and I have a tingling, excited feeling about what the coming year has in store for us. 2018 is going to be the year of the vegans. I hope that you enjoy the issue and, remember to buy your Vegan Life Live tickets for next month!