A Week Without: Caffeine



J looking at caffeinated drinks wishing that she could have them.

J Mencke, Staff Reporter

I am a very tall child with a raging caffeine addiction; I plan to attempt to break said raging caffeine addiction for the next week, November 19 to November 24, 2019. I do not predict that I will do well on my mission, nor do I predict that this will be a good time, however, I do predict that those close to me will taunt me relentlessly with their ability to have caffeine. I learnt on Pick and Brew that too much caffeine intake can cause severe health problems, and that is why I intend to bring balance to my life. 

On a good day, I wake up, and because I don’t like waking up in time, I don’t have time to make coffee and I run out the door. Tuesday was not one of those days, I woke up knowing I had time to make myself coffee, but I couldn’t. It was awful and it made me want to cry just a little bit. The day proceeded as it usually would until the second period when it was field trip time. 

Though I was excited to not have math or any other classes, I was well aware of the dangers I faced going downtown. Though my teacher never gave me an opportunity to swing by a Starbucks and grab a latte, on any day, other than this one I would’ve probably managed to do so, but alas I could not. I found myself not only more tired but I also was in a great deal of pain, my head was throbbing. But, not only was my head trying to kill me, as was my whole body. I was having minor hot flashes, and I really don’t think I’m menopausal. I got home at 5 p.m and fell asleep only to be woken up a couple of hours later for dinner which I ate a bit of, and then fell asleep again. 

The following day came with an entirely new set of challenges, however, thankfully, I had to rush out the door so there was no coffee pot tempting me. Though I wasn’t tempted to swing by a Starbucks or my coffee pot, I did have the opportunity to grab a coffee in the cafeteria, like the one I take approximately every day. Not only could I not get a coffee, my friend, who I travel with to buy lunch daily, did something out of the ordinary. She bought caffeinated tea instead of water knowing very well of my situation. I felt betrayed, to say the least. Her friend, however, swooped in and stole her tea, saving the day for me. I am very sure that if it had remained in her possession I would have failed my journey. 

I arrived at my home once again, glared at my coffee pot, and retreated to my couch, where I fell asleep for many hours. Though I am pretty sure I got up for dinner, I am not positive.

Thursday hit and I was not feeling encouraged despite the lack of major obstacles: I was tired and I wanted caffeine. The day was uneventful until I got home, and unlike the previous days, I did not fall asleep. I had no energy to do anything, so I might as well could’ve, but I couldn’t actually fall asleep. I later got to sleep at a time I normally would, which is way later than it should be. I learned at this point that not only was I going to be unable to have caffeine and have a week long migraine, but it wasn’t going to help me sleep anymore. It would have no benefits at all, making me somehow less enthusiastic about my mission.

Friday, in first period, I fell into a test that I’d usually get excited for. A friend of mine informed me that she had coffee for me, but I stayed strong and refused. I made a plan to drink it when I was finished with this whole ordeal. I endured the same challenges as Thursday on my way to lunch. My friend recommended that I quit because she could, “See it physically deteriorating at me,” or something along those lines. This added another layer to the pile of reasons I’d accumulated thus far to quit, but I continued through. At that point, I only did it to prove that I could because I’m stubborn. 

Saturday didn’t present any new challenges but I found that being home alone made the temptation to cheat grow just a little, so I decided to avoid my kitchen as to not see the potential disaster. By this point, I’d been attempting to replace the caffeine that’s usually in my body with apple juice, which has approximately none of the same properties, but at least it tastes good.

I hadn’t had much motivation to do anything since my quest had begun, and this day was no different; however, I was very aware of the fact that I needed to do things or my mother would scold me. I could easily handle that on any normal day, but the lack of caffeine made me sensitive and with a headache. So I did very little, but it was more than what I’d been doing.

Sunday was interesting. While I found no new challenges at all, I was tired and my brain was not functioning the way it should be. I wanted coffee and I was feeling a little off. To distract myself from both of these facts, I painted my nails like bees, which took all day. I took a lot of breaks though and left the house, which I had not done very often since the beginning. I was very tired and everything I did took much longer than it usually would. It felt like one of those days where you’re sick but you still have to do things, but I wasn’t sick, I was just slow.

Monday was by far my easiest day, I definitely wanted some sort of iced caffeinated beverage, but the end was in my grasp. I felt that if I gave up now all my efforts would be for nothing; and I wanted anything but that, so I kept it up for the remainder of the day and prepared for my return to my normal, caffeine-addicted life.

I’ve learned this week that though it’s not the healthiest lifestyle to spend your days relying on caffeine to function properly in society, it works for me and there are worse things I could do. The moral of the story is that I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.