Becoming a vegetarian, or vegan, is a huge lifestyle choice for anyone. I took the plunge two years ago, and I haven't looked back since. It takes time to get adjusted to the new lifestyle, and it takes time to get used to all the quirks that come with changing to a meatless diet. Especially when many of the quirks that come with being meatless includes everyone becoming way too involved in your life and what you eat.
1. Everyone and their mother all of a sudden is a nutritionist
Again, everyone will become overly involved in your life and in what you eat. As a pretty active person who loves working out, everyone became extremely concerned that I wasn't eating enough, even though I was eating more now that I was a vegetarian. They just weren't used to my plate being full of veggies and grains, rather than meat with maybe a side of veggies. If you are newly vegetarian or vegan, be prepared for everyone to become your nutritionist.
2. You will become very used to going to lunch, and not eating anything...but pasta
Not all restaurants have caught on to the fact that not everyone eats meats, and that is okay. You will learn to pack snack everywhere you go. Also, you will learn quickly that the only vegetarian meal at many restaurants is pasta. Pasta will be the only thing you eat on any social outing. Just. Pasta.
3. Prepare to be judged for every sandwich you eat in public
You will never be able to enjoy your cheese sandwich. Even though a cheese sandwich is a completely normal sandwich for anyone to eat, meat eater or not, you will be judged extensively for your meatless sandwich. They will call it a sandwich on bread, and you will point out that even if it had meat on it a sandwich is still a salad on bread because most meat eaters put meat on their salads too!
4. Chickpeas will become your best friend
Chickpeas are the most versatile bean ever! Want a burger? Chickpeas. Want meat balls? Chickpeas. As an individual who no longer eats meat, embrace the power of chickpeas now and you will never long for your favorite meat meals again.
5. You will eventually develop a script in your mind for when people ask you why you decided to stop eating meat
Everyone will question your decision, especially if they are not vegetarian or vegan themselves. This becomes especially difficult if your someone like me, who doesn't really have a reason. I didn't do it for health. I didn't do it for the animals (even though I do love them). I did it because I woke up one day and decided I wanted to become vegetarian, and that's okay too.