Before pregnancy I'd dabble in the stuff - be it a macchiato from Starbucks or a cuppa at home. During, I just ordered a decaf and got decaf teabags. Reading various books on how to have a healthy pregnancy I was disappointed to read that chocolate had the devilish compound and therefore to be eaten moderately (I would like to point out that I'm not a big chocolate fan but hormones etc I had a big craving).
Moving on, the decaffeinate-tion process continued (i.e. consuming as little caffeine as possible) as I breastfed and even when I moved onto only bottles, I continued to have decaf this that and the other.
And then the nights became too much. The seemingly constant waking of a restless, teething, had a bad dream, 'I've got trapped gas' child started to take its toll. I looked in my cupboard at the primrose yellow box before me. Hmm, the Twinings Everyday tea (read: caffeine) was calling to me..."it's only one cup. It will keep you awake for a little longer...just...one...cup..."
I gave in.
Not completely mind you. I still had coffee a la mode so to speak. And I was fine, just fine. Yes I'll admit I was certainly more alert. At the four o'clock lull when my body normally started to shut down and I stared at my precious daughter willing her to take a nap, I was attentive. With a long absence you can certainly notice the difference this substance can have.
I was amazed to find myself happy to read 'Mr. Brown Can Moo, Can You?' for the fourth time within half an hour, say calmly for the 50th time, 'don't eat that' and for the 60th time 'leave the remote alone my love'. None of it phased me. Eleven o'clock (pm) rolls around and I haven't fallen asleep on the couch. Wow, that's some stimulant.
And that's when I realize that caffeine is a necessary evil. If I'm to avoid falling asleep whilst still standing up, I need it. I've tried to keep away from it. But in my excitement over the return of Pumpkin Spice lattes, I forgot to mention 'decaf' in my list of 'tall, extra hot, non-fat blah, blah, blah' requirements and upped my intake. 'Oh bother' as Pooh says.
So I'm up to two cups of caffeine a day now and I'm glad to say it's no more than that, so far. I'm staying strong to sticking to only those two cups...and awake...very awake...