Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Caffeine Free!

I  am a caffeine monster.  I didn't used to be this way.  I don't like carbonated drinks, so I've never been a pop drinker, and until I started working in a coffee shop in 2002, I was never a coffee drinker.  Actually, I take that back.  When I first started working in a coffee shop I only occasionally had coffee, mostly because it was free. My true coffee addiction did not start until 2004 when I started work with Starbucks.

Thats right, Starbucks, I blame you.  With your "coffee master" programs and your coffee tastings and your unlimited free drinks while at work.  This is when the coffee monster reared it's ugly head.  It would not be unusual for me to have 4 or 5 cups a day when I was at work; at home, I made coffee with the free pound we were given every week.  See?  They want us addicts!  I did go without coffee once, and the headaches and nausea that soon followed were so awful I thought I was going to die.  I did't do that again for 7 years.

I don't know why I got it into my head that I needed to quit caffeine.  It is not, as far as I know, directly causing me harm.  I quite like having my morning cups of coffee (since I have left Starbucks, I usually only have two cups a day), and I really do like the taste.  Like most of my "big ideas" the thought just flew in my head one day, and wouldn't leave until I obeyed.

Remembering my little experiment 7 years ago, I started small, baby steps.  I went "half-caff" (as the kids are calling it, and by "kids" I mean me).  Oh boy!  Not small enough!  Again with the most horrific headaches I have ever experienced. I don't know why exactly I kept going, but I did.  The next few days weren't bad at all.  Then I got cocky.  Full-on, completely decaf on the fourth day.  Wow.  I'm not sure how, but it was worse than the first day.

Anyway, to make what is apparently a log story short, I have just finished my first week without caffeine.  No headaches.  It's pretty great not to HAVE to have coffee just to avoid feeling bad.  I will probably have it on occasion, but I am fully a decaf-girl from now on.