How To Parent Without Coffee

Step 1

Re-evaluate your decision

Step 2

Run to Starbucks and get your fix!

3 weeks ago my husband walked through the door exclaiming he needed to quite coffee. HE WAS DONE. And as any good partner does, I calmly asked why. He proceeded to tell me all the terrible things coffee does to him in great detail, completely convinced he no longer needed it to function. Now when my husband gets something in his head he usually sticks with it for a few weeks. He builds this one idea up until it slowly fades back to the way life was a few weeks prior to his grand idea. I truly love watching/being a part of this progression because I get to witness it from start to finish, and this one I couldn’t wait to see unfold.

To preface this a bit…we are coffee drinkers. I come from a home where my mother drinks about 4-5 glasses A DAY. The woman can pound her coffee, and she loves it. In fact, a few weeks prior Tyler set up the DDPerks app on her phone and she couldn’t be more excited (the two of them even had a half hour conversation about the app). Once we had A that was just about the only thing that got us through the first year of her constant crying. We even have an industrial espresso/coffee machine that we got as a wedding present.

So the moment Tyler walked through the door with this new mission I decided to give it a try as well. As you can imagine I only lasted about a week because spending most of my time with a toddler can’t be done without that liquid gold! And although I saw a slight difference in my energy level (mainly because I was drinking way more water), I decided not to cut it out entirely. I mean, I can’t live without my grande cold brew with a shot of coconut milk from Starbucks…

But Tyler’s first week was a bit different than mine. Where I drink only 1 cup of coffee 4 times a week, he drinks about 2 cups 5 days a week. I will say becoming a parent affected his sleep a lot more than me. His hours at work have changed quite a bit over the past two years, so he can never get on a good schedule. He’s one of those people who NEEDS their 8 hours in order to function. While he was busy sleeping in college, I was spending all hours of the night with my theatre friends singing show tunes. Becoming a parent was much like my junior year, and I took full advantage of “napping when the baby naps.” Yes, I DID nap when A slept because we spent so many nights awake trying to comfort her, but I’m getting off track now…

So his first week was filled with excitement and energy! Everyday he would come home and talk about how much energy he has. He would tell me how great he felt, and how he wasn’t even craving coffee. Great! Anything that prevented him from falling asleep right after putting A to bed was great in my book. Things were going well, which continued into week two.

Week two came around and my grandmother was visiting with us from out of town. One night we took her to our favorite restaurant, Teresa Caffe,Β in downtown Princeton. We usually frequent the place during brunch, but their dinner is just as good! The moment we sit down Tyler starts on about their coffee. This I can’t really blame him for because their coffee is OUT OF THIS WORLD GOOD. It’s one of the main reasons we always go there for Sunday brunch. As he is explaining their coffee to my grandma I can see that craving start to fester in him. I could tell, for just a second there he thought about getting a cup, but alas he did resist.

Week three came like a bat out of hell and honestly I don’t think there was time to think about any other than our daily routine, much less coffee. Our apartment started to fall apart and it was a week of workers coming and going. Our washer broke which led to two inches of water in our bathroom and hall carpet. We spent a week with a loud fan hurdling air down the hallway right into our bedroom. Tyler started taking on more responsibility at work, which delayed his hours a bit, and A’s two year molars just started to pop through. I think the both of us fell asleep with A almost every night that week.

So when Sunday rolled around, and we finally had a moment of peace, we decided to spend it at our favorite brunch place. And that is where Tyler’s no coffee adventure came to an end. We both dragged our butts over to Teresa’s and as soon as we sat down he uttered, “I think we should split a coffee.” He looked so defeated and relieved at the same time, and I’m pretty sure that was the best cup of coffee he’s had in his life. Of course I let him drink the whole thing and this momma got a mimosa! After brunch we headed over to IKEA where I enjoyed my free cappuccino (thanks to their family loyalty card), while we stocked up on 5,000 wooden hangers. I could tell he was hooked on coffee again because his eyes were locked in on my coffee, so I had to let him enjoy the last few sips.

At the end of the day we sat for a minute and talked about how he felt after his time without coffee. His conclusion was not to cut it out entirely, but to cut back. In his case, less is more, and adding a few glasses of water instead of that extra cup of coffee seemed like the way to go. So my conclusion is, you can’t parent without coffee…and if you can, you are a superhero!

Have you or your significant other ever willingly gone without coffee? If so, I’d love to hear your story and what did you replace as your “fuel?”

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