When I set out on this journey of meat-eating and contemplation, I had the intent to eat four different kinds of meat, each meat designated its own week. However, upon coming to the third week--what was to be the lamb week--I found I couldn't bring myself to eat the creatures, so I moved on to beef.
I have never eaten lamb. I think this fact is at least one thing that kept me from trying it during this experiment. Because I've never eaten lamb, the critters have always just been cute and lovable to me--there has never been a time when I thought of them as potential food. Sheep have always been pets, farm animals, and wool contributors, that's it. With this perspective in mind it became too difficult for me to wrap my head around the idea of eating lamb. And since I also have no perspective on cooking lamb, I just decided to let it be, and I feel very comfortable with that decision.
That's not to say I will never eat lamb. If I ever go to Greece, for example, I will most likely eat lamb--it is Greece after all. And because food culture is such a big part of the overall culture in many places, I think it would be unwise to abstain from partaking of local specialties when I travel--especially if a local gives it to me in welcome and kindness. (Two rules of thumb: When in Rome, do as the Romans do; Don't be a rude American/vegetarian.)
Reflecting on the experience of eating meat, the most interesting part for me was trying recipes I never thought I would try. I love to cook and being a vegetarian can admittedly limit your cooking experiences if you wish to have a well-rounded skill base.
It was also interesting to see how easy it became to eat meat, but also how firm I was in my decision to only eat ethical and sustainable meat. Eating what I cooked was a breeze, but if ever I was tempted to go the easy route and eat regular meat, the old vegetarian bias would rear its head and it was no problem to avoid it.
As for the future of meat and eating it, I suspect I will be more flexible in my consumption thereof. But before any of my meat-eater friends get too excited, you should know that I will still be so, so picky. In the case of most restaurants, I will still order the vegetarian option because most restaurants source their meat from CAFOs and I refuse to eat CAFO meat. The same goes for my own cooking or attending neighborhood barbecues and whatnot--unless the meat is from a source I find ethical and happy, I won't eat it. Thus, most of the time if I eat meat it will be because I have chosen to buy and cook it myself.
I am glad I did this experiment. It was enlightening, interesting, tasty, and a completely new experience for me. It is easy for us to become complacent in what we think or believe without revisiting why or how we came to think or believe that way. Often, even if we do revisit our beliefs, we draw the same conclusions and that is fine. The important thing is to question everything--even yourself. I never thought I'd eat meat again, but have found I don't mind it as long as the source is something I approve of. Revisiting old beliefs: check.