I was challenged by my health coach to give up coffee for three months. I really did not want to do it, three months is an awfully long time to not have a cup of coffee. I’d already weaned down to one very small cup per day, 1/2 decaf. Why on earth would I want to give up that measly bit? And the answer I got back was well, why can’t you give it up? Hmm, because: 1) really enjoy it 2) I don’t actually need it 3) It’s only a little bit 4) I could stop if I wanted to. And then I realized I sounded like an addict and I don’t want any food or drink to have that much power over me.
So I did it – for three whole months. I really didn’t feel any differently without it. I wasn’t completely caffeine free as I did have regular iced tea some days. When I originally cut my coffee consumption down I felt better. I had been having stomach aches from the acid and irritability. This time around I didn’t have physical symptoms but I did miss it. I walked with people leaving coffee houses so I could smell their coffee.
I did have a two sips of a flavored coffee in early July while I was on vacation. It was eh and I had to have some water to get the after taste out of my mouth. My reaction to this was panic. Did I really lose my taste for coffee? After years of enjoyment could it be possible that I don’t actually like it? But I was still looking for dark bitter beers to mimic the taste of coffee and I enjoyed those. Maybe it was just bad coffee or I don’t like the flavor.
I actually discussed this with people. Some were a little smug and said, “see you have changed and will no longer enjoy the taste.” Others said, “It was probably just bad coffee because coffee really is delicious.” Yes, I surround myself with fellow addicts. I wanted to believe the latter but wasn’t sure.
The three months were up on Sunday. It was crazy hot and I passed up iced coffee for a raspberry chocolate chip gelato. Later we were in Whole Foods and there was coffee to sample. I took the three ounce cup, added my milk and it was delicious, just as I had hoped. It was slightly bitter, smooth and flavorful.
I haven’t had any since and I haven’t wanted it. The three ounces were enough. I like knowing I can have it again when I want it. I also know that I will only have it occassionally and not be a slave to it any longer. It’s just another tasty beverage.
Do you have a food or drink that feels like it’s impossible to give up? I’d love to hear from you.