I am a big coffee drinker. I’ll finish whatever my hubby leaves in the morning – likely 2 cups (12-14 oz cups) then brew another pot that I will drink throughout the day. My stainless steel coffee pot keeps it piping hot for well over 12 hours after brewing. Basically I drink about 8 cups a day (again not actual 8oz cups – more like 12oz). I drink it black most of the time but occasionally I will add coffee-mate creamer.
In addition to the 8 12oz cups of Sumatra – I drink on average 4 cans of diet dr. Pepper.
I don’t drink any of this to stay awake or wake up. Caffeine doesn’t seem to have any real measurable effect on my alertness. I drink them because they are G-O-O-D. I love them.
I also drink to self medicate. I have tried (very unsuccessfully) to give up caffeine. It ends by the 3rd day with me laying in the fetal position with frozen peas under my head in a pitch dark room while wearing ear plugs because even the sound of the fan above makes me want to unzip the top of my head and remove my brain. I wish this was an exaggeration.
My head doctor years ago (not the one with the couch – the one with the stethoscope) suggested I give it up cold-turkey. He prescribed 30 vicodin because he said, and I quote “You’re gonna need those – I’m sorry”. That was not a good sign. I left his office with 30 heavy-duty pain meds (that I believe in themselves are highly addictive) and not a lot of confidence.
Day 1 as I recall (this was at least 5 years ago) was not so bad. I missed the taste of my coffee but drank water which I enjoy too. I do like a hot beverage in the morning so basically I just drank hot water. I drank milk with dinner which I always did as a kid so it was a nice treat – made me feel young.
Day 2 early morning – I could feel pain brewing in the back of my head. My first instinct was to grab a diet Dr. Pepper but instead I drank more water and took 2 Advil. No need to break out the big guns for the minor pain I was feeling. It wasn’t really even Advil worthy but I thought I was being proactive.
Day 2 early afternoon – I remember a throbbing. I remember every noise hurting like someone was stabbing me in the ear. I took more Advil. I laid down with frozen peas under my head and watched Diego with my son. I hated my doctor. I wanted caffeine.
Day 2 evening – If anyone talks to me I will stab them. When I can walk straight I am going to stab my doctor. More Advil. At this point I was in so much pain that I had forgotten I had actual prescribed pain medication available. All my bags of peas, corn, and mixed vegetables were now thawed. I couldn’t eat dinner because it would have been vomited shortly there after and there isn’t anything worse for a migraine than vomiting.
Day 3 – early morning – can’t speak without my own voice hurting my head. At this point I did remember the vicodin I had come home with. I took one with great enthusiasm (by this I mean I crawled to the kitchen and fumbled with the child safety cap poured out a giant horse sized pill (at least I remember it seeming to be huge) and swallowed it without any liquid). A bit later the throbbing dulled and aside from the needles stabbing my eyes in the form of light I was in much less pain.
Day 3 – early afternoon – throbbing is back with a vengeance and even the sound of my heart was too much for me to bear (I’m fairly certain this is the correct use of the word bear vs the other bare – stupid homophones). I popped the tab on a Diet Dr. Pepper and gulped it with all the enthusiasm of a college student at a keg party. The caffeine hit me much harder than the vicodin did. Within the hour I could stand the light of the afternoon. The throbbing had dulled to a nearly manageable amount. I took 4 Advil (that’s 800mg) and laid down with my re-frozen bag of peas.
Day 3 – evening – 2 more Diet Dr. Peppers later – I could function almost like a normal person.
I have never since tried to reduce my caffeine intake. On a side note – I did not drink soda’s ever while pregnant, I didn’t want the artificial sweeteners and I hate the taste of non-diet soda. I did drink coffee but not in the amounts I did while not pregnant. I don’t know why but I rarely suffered from migraines during any of my three pregnancies. I never took the remaining 29 vicodin. I also never returned to the neurologist.
You may wonder how I can recall this event so vividly when it was so long ago. Well – unlike with childbirth my brain doesn’t seem to want me to forget the agony I was in when trying to give up the caffeine. It (my brain) almost hurts just considering it.
I am writing this in response to Melissa over at Sweetly Voiced. She posted that she is trying to reduce her caffeine intake. It makes me wonder if I should/could do the same.
I just met with a new doctor here in CA. We discussed my migraines and the fact that they seem to be getting worse in the last few months. He was concerned that the pain has increased as well as the frequency and duration. He had me go in for an MRI – turns out I do have a brain and all seems well with it. He prescribed a new migraine medication for me. This was before FFL and he asked that I not start it until after my vacation. It can lower blood pressure and he wanted me to be in my home environment before taking it. It is a twice a day medication that is supposed to block the migraines. I had forgotten about it until I started writing this post. I guess I will start it tomorrow and after a week or so maybe try to start weaning myself off the caffeine. Not the coffee – I will just get decaffeinated – I still love the taste of my Sumatra. I would like to give up soda. As much as I love Diet Dr. Pepper it doesn’t do anything good for my body and may contribute to weight gain or at least my inability to lose weight.
*I would never actually stab anyone – just thought I should clarify that.