As I type this, it's late afternoon - and I am brewing my second cup of coffee for the day. My preferred method is pour-over. Mostly because it allows me to make one cup at a time and not drink stale coffee that's been in the pot all morning. I learned to love coffee in college - when I resorted to the most widely used drug of all (caffeine) to power through late night study sessions and early morning speech tournaments. Once I had that first cup, I felt like my brain was firing on all cylinders. I was sharper, I was wittier. I was probably also really freaking dehydrated.
Now that I'm a mom, I depend on that caffeine jolt to get me through the day. But unfortunately, now I don't feel sharper or wittier. Instead, coffee is what brings me a to minimal level of mental function. Without it, my brain is mushy and foggy. I can't think of basic words, I forget simple things. Just yesterday, when I figured I'd lay off the coffee for a moment, I forgot a pot of boiling water on the stove. Twice. And I forgot a casserole in the oven. Just once, and it was salvageable - but barely.
Coffee. Is. Life. Without coffee, I'd have most certainly fallen asleep behind the wheel of life by now. Like all things, it's best in moderation. Days when I've had too much coffee or not enough to eat, my heart races and my voice shakes. Once, at work, I had to step away for an hour or two because I was trembling and speaking so quickly I felt like I had been drugged. In all reality - I was drugged. Caffeine is a hell of a drug, and overdoing it isn't pleasant. I try to split up my coffee intake by drinking two cups of water before a cup of coffee. This was, I know I'm not slowly dehydrating my insides like I'm trying to turn them into jerky. And generally, pacing myself prevents those shakes and tremors.
Last weekend, my mom came to visit. She of the impeccable routine came by my house at about 8 am. When she pulled up out front, she tried to call - and text - and I didn't answer. I had woken up early to greet her but had fallen back asleep without my morning joe. I finally woke up an hour or so later, panicked. A glitch had prevented my article from publishing properly and my editor was asking for an explanation. I saw missed calls and a text and realized I had overslept, all at the same time. It was too much for my brain to handle, but I wasn't thinking straight (again, foggy brain) and called my mom. She had gone to grab a coffee and headed back, but was asking me questions I couldn't process. I feebly admitted, "I don't know, mom. I don't know. I...can't think straight. What?" She repeated herself: "Did you fall back asleep?"
Yes. Yes I did. I've become dependent on caffeine to function. And you know what? I'm okay with that. I think I'll start a collection of mom-themed mugs to support my habit. Of all the vices I could have, this one is pretty darn innocent - don't you think?
Do you live and die by the dark stuff? Are you a Starbucks fan, or a Dunkin' Donuts fiend? Maybe you homebrew? Tell me your favorite blend on Twitter @pi3sugarpi3.