Sweet, serendipitous irony.
Monday, I tweeted this:
Now, on Wednesday, I am trying to get off coffee.
My foot tastes great, by the way. The following series will be my thoughts as I detox from America’s most socially acceptable addiction.
Where did this come from?
On Monday, everything was as usual. I loved coffee (don’t get me wrong, I still do). My morning routine would typically involve half a pot of coffee, followed by a cup of tea in the afternoon and, often times, one at night. I take in a lo-o-ot of caffeine (roughly 750mg daily. Compare that to a Mayo Clinic study saying anything over 500mg/day can cause health issues. Yikes). I love my morning cup.
But lately I’ve been getting some headaches. Bad ones. They come pretty suddenly, and they seem to happen pretty commonly on days when I drive – and brew an extra couple of cups for a travel mug.
So Monday I’m joking about how great coffee is and Tuesday I am suffering what is yet another headache and wondering what could be the culprit.
By this morning – Wednesday – I was ready to swear it off forever.
This afternoon was rough. I was foggy, I was groggy and I was simply positive that any sudden movements would cause my head to split open. At some point, nausea started in and I felt like I was going to throw up. This sure sounds like drug detox to me.
So here we are.
Let’s be honest
Ok, a little perspective, here. There is nothing wrong with coffee. In fact there have been many studies showing its benefits when used in moderation. Not only that, I’m not driving a vehicle in an “altered” state and caffeine doesn’t fall under any kind of list of dangerous chemicals. I am able to write this in my right state of mind. I’m not a druggy, and I am confident beyond doubt that those suffering from “real” addictions and experiencing “real” detox and withdrawal symptoms have it far, far, far worse than I. The last thing I would want to do is trivialize those people’s stories.
But what I am feeling is real and medically proven, nonetheless. Today has been miserable (on a physical level). And somewhere in the daze of feeling like my head is going to explode and reflecting on the dependency my body has built up to this substance, I had a thought:
What if we were addicted to Christ the way we get addicted to other things?
Before you push back at “addiction” and “Christ” being in the same sentence, think about it.
I depend on coffee. Coffee is among the first thing my mind is thinking about when I get up. I don’t see the world clearly (at least I don’t feel I do some days) until I have applied coffee. When I don’t get it, it feels like there is something seriously awry in my day. I crave it until I can find a way to fit it into the schedule. It’s built into the fabric of my life. It is one of the few areas where I have enough foresight to predict running out, sure to make provisions so that my coffee habit doesn’t get compromised.
So it should be with our relationships with Jesus. This is the idea I hope to flesh out over the next several days.
- Day: 1
- Intake: 2 cups of tea, one black tea, one white. I also had about 130mg in a couple of Excedrin.
- Symptoms: Killer headache, Nausea (but no vomit – YAY!), drowsiness, lethargy, general unpleasant demeanor.
- Weakness: Afternoon. I was trying to go cold-turkey. Bad idea. The afternoon brought tea and medicine to ease pain.
- In A Word: Mack (as in, “I feel like I’ve been hit by a Mack Truck.”)
I could use some camaraderie here. Have you ever given up caffeine? Share your experience below.
[Photo Credit: Stirling Noyes via Compfight cc]