So, I went a full year without caffeine – from June to June. I actually went an entire year dabbling in different things, letting control go, gaining control over other things, growing and learning about my body and my mental state and can’t I just say that this has been such a full year?
It’s been nearly a year since we walked into a doctor’s office for an appointment to discuss TTC. It’s been a year since I took a break from teaching. It’s been a year since I learned to fully, completely trust in my wife and that she will be there if I fall. It’s been a year. And caffeine plays a huge roll because that marked a moment that I decided that I could let go of something that had a HUGE amount of control over my life.
It changed my life for good and for worse. I became less depended on something – possibly a good thing. I also didn’t write as much, lacked energy, and was less creative – not such a good thing. I let go, didn’t think about it, stood my ground and gave up something that brought me pleasure. I didn’t realize until recently everything that I gave up with it.
Until a year later – I can say I’m proud of myself. I’m proud that I had enough self-control to do that. I’m proud that I took the initiative and tried to figure myself out without caffeine. I’m proud that I made my way through the struggling, hard times when I had no energy.
More than anything, though, I am proud that I had enough self-reflection that I could see that it wasn’t just a positive thing for my body and mental state. I can realize that there are sometimes that you realize it doesn’t make you better or stronger to give up something like caffeine. When you realize that everything, sometimes, is better in moderation. And that, yes, it is okay to realize that it has directly affected your life, energy, and ability to be a human in a negative way.
It’s been a year without caffeine.
Okay, it was a year without caffeine.
I’m on day three of my small glass of cold brew and life, honestly, is a lot brighter and I feel a ton more like my happy, creative self (don’t worry, I am also hyper-emotional and stuck in my head/ways sometimes too). This goes for so many other things that have happened this year – people, situations, understand me.
Lesson: sometimes things are really good in moderation and sometimes you just have to find your own type of peace – understanding it looks different for different people and yourself.
So, I wrote this to express myself on Facebook (all about open vulnerability) but it’s important to expand here. It is important to expand on the fact that we are told that caffeine affects our fertility – which it does (especially with a hypothyroid) – but after four failed medicated IUIs, there has to be a give and a get with some things.
I take a ton of supplements, hormones, and everything in my life seems to have been geared to trying to have the best body to create this child. But I have been so stressed, not feeling like myself, and depressed. It’s hard giving. up. everything.
There is no happiness in self-sacrifice. You don’t get a medal and sometimes, tiny little things don’t make or break your chances at conceiving.
Sometimes your happiness is a bigger player in the game of infertility chess than giving up other things – in my case caffeine.
I am all about finding a small happiness in this ocean of uncertainty.
So, let me tell you what I have done in these last few days that have a bigger impact on my infertility than skipping out on two cups of coffee a day.
Since I have had a little cup of coffee in the morning I have:
*expressed myself better – understanding and taking moments to find words for my mental state
* went on numerous hikes with my wife
* had the energy to be an actual human
* less depressed
* a shit more creative
* did i mention that i was more active? because i’ve been more active and we all understand how being active can GREATLY impact your fertility
* felt balanced, healthier
Infertility is hard. It’s isolating. It’s easy to get depressed, to pull away from everyone, to lie in your bed and just forget who you are. But, there are small joys – outsets – to help you find your balance again.
I’m finding that by welcoming caffiene – and other things – back into my life.