Kicking Caffeine

I had decided to ween myself off of caffeine. My physical dependence on it had gotten so bad that i had to wake up to have a cup of coffee at 2:30 am on my days off before going back to bed in order to avoid a mind-splitting headache. i was having 9 cups of coffee a day which roughly translated to 22.5 spoonfuls of the organic instant coffee powder. It had gotten to the point where sometimes i didn’t even bother to boil the water. If it was 2:30 am and i didn’t have a clean pot, rather than take the time to wash one, i just dumped the spoonfuls into a plastic cup, added drinking water, and downed it. Good to go. That was all fine and well and i got a ton of stuff done with my 22.5 spoonfuls of coffee a day, but, i was just barely meeting my requirements and then the decree came that we needed to do more and faster. I realized the end game here was death. If i didn’t get out of this race i was going to be run til i dropped. The finish line was ever changing, being moved farther and farther the faster i got. I didn’t want to be a runner anymore. It took me a week to ween myself off of caffeine and those last two and a half spoonfuls (1 cup) were the hardest to let go of. My head felt like someone had taken an axe to the center of it. I was sensitive to light. It felt worse standing than lying down. I was grumpy as heck and moving slower than ever. I was miserable.

Luckily, i now had my indoor laundry operation to try out. I washed the clothes, stood on my step stool, transferred them from the washer to the dryer, set it, and pushed the start button. I watched as the clothes dried themselves in the machine in the house with fabric softener. It was amazing! I loved my laundry line and wouldn’t trade it for the world but, i decided the dryer would be good for bad weather days or sick days. I wasn’t feeling so hot so it was nice to load the clothes in there and just sit and hold my head in the rocking chair. The laundry units were not bolted to the floor so one still had to scoot the laundry units back and to the left about mid cycle. I discovered, even with the dryer unit stacked on top, i was still strong enough to scoot the washer where i wanted it. I was not confident the tiny house floor could withstand something being bolted to it and was more convinced it would rip the stick on floor boards up as it rocked. And, having to scoot the units back once per cycle was a small price to pay to not have to spend 8 hours churning the clothes in the metal tub by hand.

Both of my days off were drizzly, foggy, and damp. It really was good that i had the dryer because nothing would have dried in this weather. I hid from the world in my caffeine-withdrawal misery. I did have to go to town at one point to get supplies. I didn’t wrangle myself into the car until 4:30 pm. I found myself colliding with the after-work monday rush in the stores. They were out of everything. All the produce and instant rice had been picked over. There were people stampeding in the aisles and hitting each others baskets. I almost got run over by a basket, a motorized store scooter, a baby stroller (the kid looked as surprised as i did), a car (while i was driving), and a car (while i was a pedestrian trying to get to the basket return). The last lady nearly ran me over with her car twice and then circled back around to roll down her window and shout “sorry!!!” in my direction. I just didn’t understand these people. It was great that she was sorry but if she had driven down the parking lot rows instead of across them, she wouldn’t be having to roll down the window and shout an apology. I was doing my best not to bite anyone’s head off without my beloved caffeine. I had done a fairly standard job. At one point i ran into a coworker i hadn’t seen in a while. She waved enthusiastically. I forced my hand up, flopping about a bit like a nearly-dead fish. I waved back with an expression a serial killer might wear plastered on my face. She quickly gathered her items and left the self check out. I wondered if she would take it personal or chalk it up to me having a bad day. I hoped it was the latter. I just needed to go home. I’d heard people say “i’m not adulting well today.” I wondered if there was such a word to describe socializing with people out in society. I wasn’t people-ing well today and i needed to hurry up and get home where there were no people whose day i could ruin in my misery.

The dogs spent most of their days off in the dog run simply because i wasn’t very pleasant to be around. I wanted to spare them from my mood and i wanted to be left alone. Cashew tended to nose people constantly; poking and jabbing at them, needing constant communication, instruction, and attention as i guess most aussies do. I loved her and on days when i was feeling well i was up for it, but these days off were best spent in the dog run chewing tree stumps, running around, and barking at cars.

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