Caffeine-Free, Day Ten

Last Monday I decided to give up caffeine.  For how long, I am not yet sure.  Many times before I considered such a measure, but never got past the idea stage.  September 27 was different. Tortured by a cold of unusual severity, for several days I replaced my coffee with black or green tea.  That Monday I woke up and decided, “Since I’m already suffering, I may as well add to my suffering with this other long-contemplated sacrifice.”  Looking back, I question the wisdom of listening to my illness-addled brain.

Today is my tenth caffeine-free day.  It is hard to pinpoint when my caffeine habit really kicked in, but I think it was during my second year in Tallahassee.  My roommate drank Cuban coffee and I got hooked once I started relying on it to help me survive rising at 5:30 in the morning.  That means that for nine years I have been drinking coffee.  This is the longest I have been without it for almost a decade!

At first it was easier than I had imagined. At worst it felt depressing; my hands were empty and there was nothing with which to refill them during my morning routine.  To my surprise, I did not feel tired or have difficulty waking up.  Now I wonder if that is because I got so much rest while I was sick.

This week is proving to be more of a challenge.  Yesterday I did manage to drag myself out of bed at 5:30, but only because I absolutely had to have time to study for Spanish.  This morning I simply failed.  The chains of sleep held me to the bed until 7:00 AM.  Only then did my husband, sweet tempter that he is, tell me that he had set the coffee pot to brew for me at 5:15 AM, when my first alarm went off.  I guess I should be grateful for my ignorance; had I known, it would have been hard to resist. But, I also would have been empowered to break the grasp of slothfulness.

What do you think?  Should I keep resisting?  Should I embrace my relationship with caffeine as a positive thing?  Waking up early is definitely good for my mental health and nothing aids that like a cup of coffee.  At the same time, it does seem laudable to be able to make those morning hours without the aid of stimulants.  Your comments are welcomed.

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10 thoughts on “Caffeine-Free, Day Ten

  1. Maybe you could try researching “Natural” energy boosters. Maybe there are ways to change your habits that might help you feel more naturally refreshed in the morning.

  2. They told me the first had not been published, so I wrote another. Please forgive me. I could not find a spot to delete.

  3. Some say coffee is actually good for you:
    http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/coffee-new-health-food

    And interestingly enough, I remember Dr. D saying that it’s not the caffeine that interferes with homeopathic remedies; it’s something else, present in both decaf and regular coffee. So she was fine(ish) with people drinking tea instead of coffee, if they wanted the caffeine. But she didn’t drink anything caffeinated.

    She also said that the interference is relative to the patient’s normal response to coffee. If you can drink some without getting jittery then it’s less likely to inhibit the remedy. Apparently in France, where homeopathy is common practice, many patients take their remedies with their coffee. 🙂

    Sometimes I think it’s just the ritual or the taste of the coffee that’s so nice in the mornings. So if you’re wanting to rein in your sense of dependence on the caffeine itself (while not missing the lovely aspects of a morning cup) perhaps you could try drinking decaf for a while. Or work to limit the intake: one cup only, or something like that.

    • I can’t tell whether you should or shouldn’t drink coffee. But I can tell you two things. First,it does get easier. I honsetly don’t even think of coffee anymore and I hardly miss it. However, if I could drink it I probably would, at least occasionally on weekends or at the cabin.

      • Yeah. Somehow, going to a coffee shop to read and write on a Saturday morning just isn’t right without the java!

    • Hey Anne,
      Thanks for that thoughtful comment. I think the ideal situation would be to drink coffee often but not every day. I just don’t know if that is feasible. Things seem to get harder- I feel very tired today.

      Speaking of coffee, I cannot find that coffee you used for Greek coffee! I miss those pretty little cups you served it in, too. I went to Plaza Latina but didn’t find anything that look familiar.

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