While my lentils simmer, let me tell you about quitting. Barely 48 hours in, and I feel like I’m done.

Before I begin, I realize the walking cliche that I am, posting about eating or not eating or changing my eating. Whining is one of my least favorite activities, especially in the written form. What’s more self-indulgent than complaining about a situation that I brought upon, nay, I paid for to be brought upon myself? If you came here looking for knitting or adorable French bulldog photos, move along. All you’re going to get is a bowlful of vegan soup and some roasted beets.

I forgot about the caffeine withdrawal. It makes it difficult to focus. Like a slowly closing vice on my skull. My brain feels like Luke and Leia as the walls were closing in. This was the worst part of the cleanse last time. I even chundered on the first day. While at work. Midday. I’ll always remember the day because that’s when I learned that word. Chunder. (The nice lady who said, “You better not chunder on my Marc Jacobs bag” did not like that I took to calling her “chunder thighs” after that, but who would?) I’ll also forever remember the cooked apple, zucchini and quinoa, but that’s a little much to dwell on right now.

The caffeine’s iron grip moved from the base of my head to the front. There were points today that felt like my eyeballs had been scooped out with a melon baller and placed back in the sockets. I had a dull ache behind my face. Not the best state for copy editing. All this pain has caused me to question coffee. Not to worry, I’ll be drinking it again soon enough. But, if something can wreak such havoc on your body to give up is that reason not to consume it? Or reason not to quit it?

It’s not like I drink copious amounts of the stuff, but two mugs are a regular part of my morning. Weekends can see a latte plus a cappuccino or two, and maybe the random after-work rendez-vous. I don’t “need” it to wake up or take care of other coffee-related business. However, clearly, my body makes no bones about having a difficult time of letting go, regardless of what I consider to be in the realm of reasonable. It does give me pause to only drink coffee when it’s really good. In general, unless I’m on a roadtrip, I’d rather go without than drink something that’s not going to be good. I’ve been known to go out to breakfast, only to leave the brunch joint un-coffee’ed to order a latte across the street. This kind of hurt is not worth sub-par swill. (After today, I doubt I’ll attempt this gastrointestinal retreat anytime soon.) Withdrawal is for quitters. And, I just can’t quit you, cup o’ Joe.

I knew things were getting bad when all I wanted to do was lie down for a nap. Even the thought of knitting does not bring me respite. I just want this feeling to go away. I am not myself, right now. Although there are plenty of healthy habits that come along with what I’m doing (yoga, meditation, sipping buckets of hot water, eating mindfully, freshly-cooked meals, soups), my gut’s not cool with hitting the pause button on everything it knows. Just cutting out snacking and focusing on 3 meals a day has been a bit rough. Granted, I’m not doing it by the letter of the law, otherwise I would have eaten three hours ago. Sure, I’ll suffer and let it slip on time, but I will stress over whether to eat butter, because the focus of our meals are vegan, except the ghee. (That’s clarified butter.)

Heck, maybe it’s not just coffee. It could be me. I didn’t do my self-massage with oil. (Minds out of the gutter. I really liked it back in the fall.) I was supposed to exercise beyond my yoga, but how I felt prevented me from running. The timing of my meals is off. (That said, I’m feeling better now as I hunger for overdue dinner than I did when I was eating lunch on time. I understand the slippery slope of cleanse into eating disorder. No fear of my falling off that cliff. There’s plenty of bread and caramels and seafood in my future.) I could beat myself up about not doing it perfect enough, but that’s not the point either. Food for thought. Or thought for thought.

The towel’s not thrown in, but I’m definitely considering it.

7 Responses to “quitter?”

  1. irishgirlieknits Says:

    Hang in there honeybadger. Baby steps…

    My morning cup of coffee used to be diet coke. All day diet coke. I know I can probably never go caffeine free, but I made myself drink one glass of water before the diet coke. Then two. Then three….Now I can go until noon or 3pm without it. Step in the right direction, right?

    And, if you feel the same way tomorrow, well, think about the honeybadger. You know what he says 🙂

  2. Don Says:

    What’s a blog for if not “self-indulgent complaining?”

    Best description of caffeine withdrawal ever.

  3. Darcy Says:

    Darling, what you are doing is so big, even if it’s temporary, that it makes perfect sense you’d question it and need to process it (where better than here in your personal corner of the internet where people who love you can offer solace and support?), and to deal w/ all that on top of caffeine withdrawal? That’s so much. Sending some loving thoughts your way.

  4. marcy Says:

    I’ll listen. Cleanse is hard. Baby steps like Irishgirliegirlie said. My motto is everything in moderation leads to healthy lifestyle.
    Honey badgers truly care!

  5. Tece Says:

    I hear you! I did this caffeine removal myself, back in November. It was very (unexpectedly) hard but now I’m good….mostly missing the ritual part of coffee drinking now. Besides, tea bags can be so messy! I’m with you on the food too, but finding it worth the time and trouble in health gains, and as a bonus, fitting back into lots of clothes! It’s all part of the journey….

  6. becky Says:

    I hear you loud and clear brother, every word is something i can relate too and i’m very proud of you for going for it. iloveyoumeanit.

  7. Angela Says:

    Been there, done that. Won’t try it again! Sorry it’s so tough for you.