Friday, September 24, 2010

Caffeine

It's time. I have reached by rock bottom.

Hello. My name is Kali and I'm a caffeineaholic. My addiction began in high school. Someone once offered me a pop and I took it. I didn't so much as ask what was in it. I just drank it. We didn't have pop at my house. Dad made us drink milk. I fell in love with this new beverage. I had to have more of it. I wanted pop all the time. I would drive to Casey's in the morning to buy a pop after practice. I would steal and scrounge for coins to fill the vending machine so I could get a fix midday. Although I dabbled in multiple forms, Pepsi was my flavor of choice.

I was able to subside this addiction after college. I switched to Diet Dr. Pepper, never really ready to give up pop or caffeine entirely or cold turkey. Although I tried. When I felt motivated, I could go a day or two without a pop. But the headaches were relentless and mind numbing and I couldn't surpass them. I gave in and went back. The addiction won again.

Now, I'm heading towards 30. I'm ready for a change. I don't think that I can give up pop. I like the taste too much. I must give up caffeine though. I've been buying caffeine free DDP for a while now. Due to my horrendous work schedule though, I've been binge drinking Pepsi for a week. I stumble on dollars daily to make my deposit in the machine. Yesterday, I had two 20oz Pepsis. This is when my stumbling downhill began.

I went home, ate supper, had another DDP and then headed off to yoga. C2, heated to 100 degrees for an hour, yoga. It was amazing. I was breathing and stretching and holding and releasing and sweating and sweating and sweating. About halfway through, I started to get a pain in the top of my head. It would come and go depending on the posture. It was weak at first but by the time we were winding down, it was a full fledged tornado in my head. Every time I moved, an invisible hammer would hold no mercy as it pounded behind my eyes. I don't know how but I made it through class. I made it out the door and into my car. That's when I started to feel sick. I rolled down the windows and rested my head back for a few minutes. I knew what was happening. I had been here before. I was dehydrated. The only other time I had been dehydrated this bad, I ended up fainting at a Howie Day concert and spending the rest of the night in the ambulance. At this point again, I was thankful to be sitting down.

I chugged back two bottles full of water and made it to a gas station by our house. I was after some electrolytes. With some water and Gatorade now seeping into my system, the throbbing was subsiding. I had calmed my nausea enough to take a shower. I had managed to relax enough so I could crawl into bed for the night, but not before I made a promise to myself. I would really TRY and give up caffeine. Not on Monday, not after I'm done working mandatory overtime, but now. Caffeine leads to dehydration. When I drink pop, I'm not drinking water. Then when I get to yoga and sweat off my weight in water, I'm left with nothing in the tank. My reserves are empty and instead, I'm rewarded with a migraine.

Doing a quick search on Wikipedia, I found that caffeine also leads to reflux disease (which I've had), insomnia (which I've had), headaches (which I've had) and even anxiety with obsessive compulsive tendencies when caffeine is taken in large amounts. Hello! Have we met? This all might sound extremist but maybe that's what I need. Maybe I need to be scared. I need to remember how I felt last night when I want a pop so bad I can taste it. I need to remember the urge to want to throw up when I get the urge to visit the vending machine. I need to envision the hammer to my head when I'm so tired at work all I need is a quick fix.

I need help. I know that now. I need to give it up. I'm not ubberly confident at this point beings that it's Friday and I have 10 hours of work ahead of me, but I'm going to try. That's all I can do is try. I've acknowledged my problem, publicly and I'm moving forward.

8 comments:

  1. Umm, you ended up in an ambulance before?! So caffeine via pop does lead to dehydration but you have options. Can you give it up entirely? I've had issues with that. You know what I drink in the morning....but it's mixed with water and I drink more water through out the day. What if you ration?

    So is it sick and twisted of me that I'm chuckling at the thought of you having caffeine withdrawals? :p

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  2. And quite the Howie Day concert you missed!

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  3. Mandi - moderation is my only hope at this point but I would like to eliminate it all together. Although I do like me a glass of iced tea too so we'll see. And yes, it is sick and twisted that you would find joy in my suffering… as for the ambulance, we were at an outside, crowded concert and it was over 100 degrees. I had half a beer, got amongst the crowd and tried to find my way out before I went down but to no avail. Shawn caught me, bout took out some jerks in our way and led me to the curb where they escorted me to the ambulance. At least it had A/C and lots of water!

    Jordan - So much so that you didn't bother to come check up on your friend in the ambulance!

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  4. We knew Shawn was taking great care of you. Plus Kelli and I had inched our way closer and closer to the sage!

    In all seriousness, I too struggle with caffeine. My first year of teaching, I'll bet I bought on average, at least one pop a day from the vending machine at school. That trend maybe continued on into my second year of teaching. Then my coworker introduced me to coffee! There isn't a school day that passes that my coffee pot isn't full and I no longer buy pop at school. The only problem is, what's worse? I have at least two cups of coffee every morning and often times, a pop at night.

    While I've never dehydrated, the other symptoms scare me. I have become an anxious person and I do struggle with some obsessive compulsive behaviors. Maybe I too, need to cut out the pop altogether and cut back on the amount of coffee I drink at school . . .

    You let me know how that works out for ya! Maybe I'll be inspired.

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  5. Good luck Kali, I have been off pop since april 2008. It was difficult but I did it and now when I have a pop, I get a stomach ache. The only part I hate about it is that it is hard to find mixed drinks that don't involve some sort of pop!!!!

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  6. Kali - maybe you should just have what your Dad made you drink....but chocolate milk instead. We could start a chocolate milk craze! I could get addicted to that.

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  7. So I didn't mean sick and twisted in that sense. :/ More so the funny aspect of you going through withdrawals and needing caffeine. Not the dehydrated part.

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  8. Mr. H - You should go off caffeine! Then I'll have someone to commiserate with! Although I think you at least get some things beneficial out of coffee. Pretty sure there is nothing good in pop. Dammit.

    Katie - Good thing I like beer.

    Brenda - I SHOULD drink more milk. It's been years since I've had chocolate milk. If I like chocolate in my beer I'm sure I'd like chocolate in my milk.

    Team Cornstuble - I knew what you meant.

    Is it sad I mentioned beer twice in this comment?

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