Monday, October 01, 2007

Talking about Coffee

Back in the day (of needing coffee immediately upon painfully peeling my crusty eyelids open after another into-the-wee-hours-of-Tuesday-morning party) I gulped caffeine without any preference to particular brands or types. Caffeine sustained me through a Mon-Fri eight hour workweek, and provided me the energy to dance wherever I wanted. My responsibilities started with me and ended with my rent. I woke up each morning looking for sheer happiness and a world only for me. I thought I could have it too. I wanted to get my way. I believed pouty red lips would pay for my two large hazelnut coffee coolattas every day. Caffeine allowed me to be 21 and stupid.

And it was glorious.

Not unlike bungee jumping off a steep crag - only to realize midway down that I’m not actually wearing a bungee cord, I had a baby. A girl one. And instantly my maternal circuitry went haywire. The deeply buried mother in me was making her way to the surface – it would eventually take her more than ten years to finally rock the mom gig but that’s why children are made so durably (says I). She wailed at me and didn’t let me sleep the way I required, but I still wanted her in my life so badly; I had never felt this love and was blindsided. Have you ever randomly glanced at them and thought “I would die for you and I’ve only known you for two years”? But I still needed coffee. I was originally talking about coffee, right? I still needed it but for different reasons. It wasn’t all about me anymore. And never would it be again, but strangely and somehow contentedly, I was okay with that. I learned to enjoy the taste of coffee brewed at home and the occasional half ‘n half crisis. I thought you put it on the grocery list! I was starting to find joy not only in the caffeinated effects but in the smell and warmth of my first morning cup. It became more like a comfort rather than a necessity. Pair that with a drooling baby girl and I was taking my u-turn mornings in stride.

Ooh look at me! I’m in my mid-twenties and I like to pretend to be a coffee enthusiast! I even have my oversized Marden’s mugs! I would’ve argued that Chock Full O’Nuts had like way better flavor than Folgers. I’d sip coffee with my mother at her kitchen table or with classmates in the university lounge – heatedly discussing the conservative wave or the effects we’d felt from terrorism. I’d triumphed my way through the jagged caves of unexpected wonder and fright otherwise known as Toddler. I thought I knew a thing or two about coffee. My energy levels fluctuated alongside her growth spurts and additional molars, but I always found time to nap. Coffee had become less of a physical need and more of a nice social addition. A non-traditional student/single mother such as me found safe company in people around the coffee table. It was the “hump day” of my maternal workweek.

Je t’aime plus q’heure
Moins que demain

In the same way a good cup of coffee takes longer to brew, becoming a strong and confident mother is a journey in self awareness. I’m not even trying to be funny here. I am a transformation in decency and now I understand why people usually referred to me as that obnoxious girl. I need some cake to distract myself from remembering.

I guess I’m just wondering out loud if coffee can offer a window into the stages of one’s life. What does today’s coffee say about me? It might say “I’m a large Tim Horton’s, one sugar, six creams” and could that possibly translate into I’m so infuriated with our government that I’ll only drink Canadian coffee? (Rather Venezuelan coffee but you knew what I meant.) Just make mine creamy, nutty and sharp. I want it to clear my nose and linger on my breath. I can sip with my Husband or alone in my fuzzy white bathrobe. I can enjoy it with one child on my lap or all three. It’s become a part of my life that I don’t wish to quit. If only I could rest assured caffeine cured breast cancer, then I’d stop over-analyzing my addiction. I wonder how I’ll rationalize my relationship with Tim when I look back in ten years?


Blogger Ar said...

mmmmmm I love Timmy Ho-Ho's. The pleasure a medium two cream one sugar gives me is innappropriately sexual; but hey a girls got to do what a girls got to do!!

9:23 AM  

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