About two months ago I started getting a really sharp pain in my pelvis – randomly coupled with some other really unpleasant side effects. On the pain scale I would say I’m pretty tough – and this sharp pain caused me to double over in agony in the ‘. middle of the hall at work. A few days later I got it again, twice. A trip to my doctor yielded not much until she mentioned how much water I was drinking. I instinctively replied ‘tons, I drink water like it’s my job!’….then I did a quick mental tally and realized I was drinking about 40 0z. of water and about 86 oz. in coffee. Yup. I was drinking 3-4 Venti iced coffees (cream + 1 sugar) and a doubleshot each day. I’ll throw up a quick visual image for those of you looking cross-eyed at your screen:
So I vowed to cut it out, cold turkey and focus on getting my 100 oz. of water every day then assess how I felt after 30 days.
This is what I looked like before I gave up coffee:
My first week without it was HORRIBLE. I have heard about caffeine withdrawal and everything I read was true – nausea, dizziness, headaches (dull, annoying headaches), chills, sleepiness and last but not least, EXTREME IRRITABILITY. Everything annoyed me – I was bitchy as hell and snapped at people for smiling. No lie! Luckily my family loves me and I work with a really supportive group of guys and gals who didn’t take it personally. After the first week the symptoms dulled but the headaches persisted. Oh and the cravings – I would have bartered with the devil for a doubleshot. Gladly. 🙂
Around week 3 I noticed a shift – I was finally mellowing and I was sleeping better. I’m normally someone who takes forever to fall asleep then wakes up 10-15 times a night. Well, without coffee I only wake up once or twice. I also noticed this nervous energy I always assumed was “Samantha” was actually “Samantha on too much caffeine”. Of course it wasn’t good nervous energy like the kind you feel around your crush or when embarking on a new adventure … no this was the kind that always makes you feel uneasy and on edge. That feeling has left me and dare I say it…I’m actually sort of zen now!
The biggest change (aside from my wallet…all that Starbucks adds up BIG TIME!) was the pains went away. Gone. I did some Googling and chatted with my doctor and some nurse friends and I think I actually developed a caffeine intolerance. When I was in my early twenties I was obsessed with coconut and I used/ate so many products containing it that I developed an allergy. I’m fairly certain the same thing is true of coffee. I overdosed and developed an intolerance. Crazy!
August 30th marked my one-month milestone – and I decided to try a tall iced coffee just for kicks. Within an hour the pain returned. I have had the same reaction to caffeinated tea so I’m officially off caffeine for good. 🙂
I am no longer toting my gold card or chatting on a first name with my baristas. It’s funny how something can go from defining you to a distant memory in the blink of an eye!