Hold My Liquor? I Can't Even Hold My Effing Caffeine.

It was just made clear to me that I must retire my UCLA Festival of Books coffee cup. My favorite cup. My lucky, "writer" cup that I have been drinking buttloads of coffee out of since forever. It seems coffee is the culprit for my past week of migraines, dizzy spells and hallucinations. WTF? Can this be happening to me? My one remaining addiction. My sole drug. Gone. GONE!

No more coffee in the morning, afternoon and evening. No more soy lattes from Starbucks. No more iced coffee on a hot day. It's herbal tea for me. Herbal effing tea. I think I'm going to cry.

For some reason, I come from a long line of women who hit their mid-twenties and became hypersensitive to caffeine. It happened to my mother and her mother before her and after the other day's brush with death while driving. (I was convinced I was going in reverse at a stoplight and pressed the gas as not to hit the car behind me and almost rear-ended Kanye West. (Sorry, Kanye. P.S. Nice reems.)

At first I thought it was a brain tumor and that I was dying. I would have been okay with that, but this? This is a catastrophe of monumental proportions.


It wouldn't be so bad if I didn't work until 1am five nights a week, but four hours of sleep and nothing to pick me up? It's kind of like a little slice of hell.

Parenting without coffee is like sex without a penis. Sure there are substitutions but at the end of the day/night/afternoon it's just not the same.

I can barely keep my eyes open. I'm a perma-exhausted Mommykins with serious pinchers (because I'm crabby) and two more hours of work tonight and THERE IS NO CAFFEINE IN MY BODY and tomorrow? NO CAFFEINE THEN, EITHER!

What has happened to me? Stop the madness. It was one thing to pass out after one drink, but a cup of coffee making me mental? It has to be all downhill from here.

I must have done something really bad to deserve this. I should have never stole that Watermelon Bonne Bell chapstick from the drugstore in 7th grade. Karma is a bitch.

I hate you, Celestial Seasonings. You stupid tea-bag.

Whatever. Shut up. Don't even talk to me right now.



motherbumper | 3:42 AM

"Parenting without coffee is like sex without a penis." Couldn't have said it better myself.

I'm crying for you. This is a sad day. Be strong, be strong.

A. Nonny Mouse | 5:20 AM

I, too, had to give up caffeine. It sucks. I would literally KILL for a Coke. However, the migraines and sleeplessness is just not worth it.

I feel your pain, girl, I feel your pain.

Anonymous | 6:07 AM

I agree. When I couldn't eat jackshit with Q (breastfeeding) I was like - parenting w/o chocolate cake and coffee is NOT parenting.

It's torture.

Andrea | 7:36 AM

As a sufferer of migraines, I was given the cut caffeine directive long ago, and it didn't help. I would still get the migraines, and the shakes, and the nausea. No hallucinations, though.

My point is that I am drinking a huge soda right now, caffeine loaded, because cutting caffeine didn't work. I had to get medicine to knock out the headaches. Kick ass medicine that costs $25 a pill (before insurance, Thank Gawd for insurance) but it works. If caffeine isn't responsible for your headaches and they are just good old fashioned migraines, this may just be a blip and you could be back in the mug soon.

I do feel for you, though. Those weeks of my no caffeine experiment were hard. Tea is a poor substitution (no vibrator will ever rival a real penis, such an apt description) but it may be what gets you through.

Anonymous | 7:44 AM

Can you try green tea? I'm very sensitive to caffiene but for some reason, green tea caffiene hits different receptors in the brain and it's definately not the same as coffee, it's a decent substitute. Check it out if you can. (Starbucks makes an excellent green tea latte!)

OhTheJoys | 8:03 AM

AHHHHHHHHHHHHH! NO! This is my worst nightmare. I shudder.

Binky | 8:06 AM

Since your husband still has a penis, maybe you can make up for the lack of coffee by having more sex. That would certainly put salve on my wounds if I was going through a similar withdrawal. As it is, I drink a lot of coffee to make up for the fact that I get no sex. I guess nobody can have it all.

jess | 8:49 AM

you do the non-profit thing too, eh? interesting...would love to read more about it.

and coffee's not so great, it just feels that way when you're hooked. try southern-style-sweettea, it's sugary goodness will make you forget all about your former love for coffee.

Keri | 10:15 AM

What's wrong with decaf coffee? I get the the caffiene buzz even from that...although I think it's purely psychological! =P

merseydotes | 10:24 AM

I did a headache program to figure out my migraine triggers, and it turns out either caffeine or birth control pills is to blame. So I can tell you from experience...a world with only decaf and condoms is far worse than a world with only decaf.

btw, Have you tried the D? It actually tastes pretty good (Whole Foods carries a shade-grown organic Mexican that would fool any red-blooded coffee drinker) and can be sort of a psychological substitute. Sort of.


Thank you. Thank you. It helps to know a woman in need has back up. I'm going to try decaf and see if I can have fun with it. Oh God. I think I'm going to cry again.

Creative-Type Dad | 11:30 AM

That penis line is pretty good!

I'm lucky to have never ever gotten into coffee. In college I came really close, but Mountain Dew and Sweets Tarts were my drug of choice.

Anonymous | 11:54 AM

Having never been a coffee drinker myself, sis, I found that when I REALLY needed to wake up, Yerba Mate seemed to do the trick. No caffiene, just lots of stuff that is like caffiene that the south americans have been drinking for ages. I'm pretty sure* the stuff is actually some form of highly illegal stimulant and no one has actually caught on yet, but oh well.

*Not really, though I did hear it was related to the cocaine plant. Though so is chocolate.

Anonymous | 11:54 AM

Having never been a coffee drinker myself, sis, I found that when I REALLY needed to wake up, Yerba Mate seemed to do the trick. No caffiene, just lots of stuff that is like caffiene that the south americans have been drinking for ages. I'm pretty sure* the stuff is actually some form of highly illegal stimulant and no one has actually caught on yet, but oh well.

*Not really, though I did hear it was related to the cocaine plant. Though so is chocolate.

Anonymous | 12:29 PM

I really need that cuppa every morning even though it dehydrates me and makes my breath smell.

TWININGS TEA is my pal though, can't hate her.

Anonymous | 2:21 PM

OMG, I've read you for a while w/o ever commenting but I must send you love now. You poor thing. I would wither and die without my coffee in the morning and sometimes in the day. I have never understood 'tea' people. Ugh, the only time I want tea is when I'm sick---shouldn't that tell you something? Maybe the craziness will continue and you'll realize that it wasn't the coffee after all; wait, maybe that isn't such a good deal. Hang in there and be strong.

Bluepaintred | 3:40 PM

OMG i pray that this NEVER ever happens to me!

i feel so bad for you

im on the verge of tears . i start my pot at quarter to seven AM, and turn it off around midnight!

Mom101 | 4:44 PM

When I hit about 29, I was done with caffeine, or rather, it was done with me.I feel your withdrawl pain. I can only assure you it gets better and blah blah yadda yadda I know you totally don't give a shit right now.

(But it does.)

(And you can still drink hot chocolate out of the cup.)

(Also gin.)

kittenpie | 5:09 PM

I have to say that while preggy I discovered a good Swiss process decaf is not a bad subsitute... harly noticed the difference. Might work?

Fantastagirl | 7:50 PM

Here via bluepaintred...

I could not parent without my Dt. Coke, so I am pretending the headaches I have, have absolutely NOTHING to do with the amount of Dt. Coke I consume in a day...NOTHING!

Anonymous | 8:12 PM

found you through Blue's blog. My mom had to give up coffee. For some reason she can drink tea with caffine, but not coffee..she's gone *whisper* decaff...oh the horror!!! In some desperated attempt to trick her body.

I've been trying to cut my blog reading down in numbers, and dangit, I know have to add you to my bloglines!!! I've enjoyed what I've read soo far.

asdfasdfasdf | 10:18 PM

If you need some natural uppers, maybe try B vitamins or even vitamin C. I used to take bee pollen. It's pretty good stuff. Sorry about the no caffiene thing. That really sucks. After a couple weeks I'm sure you will be over the withdrawls. Good luck and I like your blog.

Sandra | 5:27 AM

Oh I too feel your pain. I had to give up caffeine in my twenties too. It sucked but I felt better in the end. Crap ... that sucks. Wishing you luck through the withdrawals...

Suburban Turmoil | 6:22 AM

Oh my. I went through the same thing in my early twenties. Too much caffeine was actually causing me to have shooting pains in my breast! My mom had had the problem too and calcium deposits caused by caffeine in the breast tissue were to blame.

At the time, I was doing a morning show and getting up at two in the morning. Going without coffee was pure hell. Over time, I got used to the tea replacement, but. Aaaauuuugggh!

Once I broke the caffeine addiction, I eventually went back to drinking coffee, but now I rarely have more than a cup a day.

Good luck!

Her Bad Mother | 8:56 AM

I had to give up caffeine a few years ago for blood sugar reasons. SUCKED. ASS.

But I became an aficionado of herbal teas and decaf espressos (not the contradiction in terms that you might think, especially at a good Portuguese cafe). As it happened, tho', a few months after Emilia arrived, I was desperately craving caffeine in a sleep-deprived moment of desperation and had a cup. Aaaaaah.

Now I'm addicted again. But for the moment, my body seems to be handling it (and sugar, as it goes). But we'll see what happens once the hormones settle. Prolly back to tea...

Ms. Smoochy | 12:33 PM

I'm sorry. So so so sorry.

Anonymous | 11:47 PM

I'm really a tea drinker. But I found that, though I'm used to caffeine, I was much more sensitive to coffee than the equivalent amount in tea. Coffee makes me really jittery and twigged out. I can handle one cup every once in a while. Someone once told me it was because the electrons in the caffeine "molecule" spun one direction, whereas the same molecule in tea spun the other way. (Yes, those were his exact words.) So even though he was full of shit, I still think there might be something else additional in the coffee that I'm sensitive to.

Just thought I'd mention it in case you wanted to give caffeinated tea another go.

Anonymous | 3:49 PM

" You stupid tea-bag."
I love this type of subtle humor. But I wonder what the percentage of people out there get this particular joke. It's frightening how many people don't really "get jokes" and only understand words on their most literal level. My mother-in-law (may she suffer all manner of gastro-intestinal distress) doesn't get about 35% of my speech (which would be humor/sarcasm/bitter, ironic commentary). It's so goddamn frustrating! It's like we speak entirely different languages and can't connect on any level. She thinks I'm ignorant/stupid/wrong when I use any kind of non-literal, non-linear, or textually subversive speech (read: humor). She thinks that I'm an ignorant ho, when in actual fact, I'm just smarter than her. Man, I wonder what your husband and his peeps would say about this stuff - dullards who CAN'T LAUGH. Eiw.
To make matters worse, my comic sense is ON FIRE when I'm around MIL, which makes sense - I think in many ways humor is an outlet for extreme hostility.
GGC, you rock. I LOVED the boob post, it was amazing.