My struggles weren’t too different from Job’s, but my questions were not existential. I simply wanted to know the secret to feeling good. Lately, the kids had been driving me into the ground.
While Job may have reached out to questionable friends, my choice – like every toxic relationship – was one I swore I would avoid forever.
And so began my caffeinated month of craziness.
Really, if you feel like control in your life is slipping away and you are not already addicted, I strongly discourage coffee.
In truth, I had parted ways with caffeine years before tiny feet carried away the final remnants of my youth. A little sip in the morning, and I would remain awake for hours…over twenty-four, in fact.
One time in particular, my husband and I made a 13-hour car ride after I had consumed an entire cup. Perhaps I overdid it. Perhaps your veins aren’t supposed to feel like they are about to explode? Whatever. Lesson learned.
But, then, children. And sleepless nights. And teaching 8 a.m. classes.
My real moment of weakness, however, was not in my decision to partake – it rested in my reason why: All the other moms are doing it.
It was silly, but the consequences were ugly: migraine withdrawals, chronic thirst, and an inability to quiet my thoughts. Worst of all, four cold sores emerged in a single month.
The break-up, I already knew, was imminent, and I resigned with an important realization: What works well for others may not work well for me.
I think we parents are pushed – and tempted – from all sides. A quick fix always feels just out of reach. But somewhere in the caffeine high, I stopped listening to myself, my body.
Sleep, exercise, Jesus – these are the things I was designed to crave. The coffee mug just seemed to get in the way.
But Job’s hope remains: the trials have a purpose. And the energy expended is never wasted, only channeled into our little creations.
And, with that, my cup runneth over.