Wednesday, November 3, 2010

meditaion, moderation, caffeination

My friend Kelly once tricked me into going to a meditation class with her. I say tricked because she told me about the stretching, the tea time, the soothing guided meditation, and the fact that it was free. She neglected to mention that the class was TWO AND A HALF HOURS LONG. After the stretching, the tea, and the soothing guided meditation (which was really not as soothing for me as I think it was for other people because I kept peeking one eye open and wondering if it was okay to change positions since my legs were going numb) I remember the man in charge (maybe he has some kind of title) telling us a story about how meditation is a Daily Activity and if you don't do it every day then you might as well not do it at all because you clearly won't be getting as much out of it. Which pretty much means that that was my last meditation class.

I have a point that I'm getting to, I promise. Just go with me on this.

A couple times in the last month or so I went to the student health center to see about my recent Tummy Issues and the doctor(s) told me that, among other things, I should try to cut out caffeine. To someone who was formerly a daily Pepsi drinker, this was not good news. I was willing to try it though, since my tummy has been all hurty and upset lately. I stopped drinking caffeinated soda and drank Sprite when the occasion presented itself. But then I started reading up on IBS and found that some of the research has pointed to fructose as one of the triggers for, uh, symptoms. So on a recent trip to Costco I bought a package of Mexican Cokes-- you know, the kind that come in glass bottles and are made with cane sugar? And I'm not sure if it is all in my head but I think I'm noticing a difference. For one thing I have been drinking a lot less soda than I used to. Maybe 2-4 times a week which I guess still sounds like a lot but not when you compare it to the 7-14 times a week that it used to be, amiright? Anyhow it seems like when I drink Sprite or regular cola that I get a tummy ache, whereas when I drink Pepsi Throwbacks or Coke from a glass bottle I do not.

Maybe I should stop drinking soda all together but if there's a sure-fire way to make me throw in the metaphorical towel or break into the bottling company late at night to drown myself in one of their mixing tanks it is telling me that I AM NEVER ALLOWED TO DRINK SODA AGAIN.

So. Moderation.

I have been doing pretty well with this plan. I haven't recently had any SEVERE tummy aches like I used to and I've been drinking more water and eating smaller frequent meals and so on.

This past Sunday night, however, I could. not. sleep. I remember lying in bed around 11. Waking up to pee around midnight. Being awake at 2ish. Being awake at 3ish. Being awake at 4ish. Being awake at 5ish. Being awake at 6ish. And having to get up at 7ish. And I got up and went to clinical since I had actually called in sick the previous week for that exact reason-- I couldn't sleep last Sunday night either!

I wondered what the hell was wrong with me. Was I just so keyed up about clinical that I couldn't relax? Was something else stressing me out?

But I didn't feel stressed out or worried. Just NOT ABLE TO SLEEP. Then, as I was brushing my teeth and fantasizing about my snuggly bed, I thought: CAFFEINE! I drank a Coke last night at about 8 pm. Could that possibly be it? It has been years and years since caffeine from soda has affected me in a noticeable way but it has also been years and years since I haven't had it regularly. So. Huh. Maybe.

And then I did a little research. I discovered that at 8:14 on Sunday Oct 24 I had posted this on Twitter.
Ah HA!

Last Sunday night I drank a Coke at about 8 pm and I couldn't sleep that night either. Mystery solved!

So apparently I'm now one of those people who has to watch out and not drink soda too late in the day. Not even two months of this and I've already become my grandmother. Not that that's a bad thing; she was pretty awesome.

Now that I'm reading back over this post I'm realizing that some people might be reaching into their mental file cabinets and relabeling my file as "Soda Drinker, Excessive" but what if I told you my favorite beverage is actually milk? And that my doctor told me to cut back on that, too? Any sympathy now? What if I tilt my head and bat my eyelashes at you?