My addiction..

It was August.


On someday, not sure which, but I think it might have been around the 20th or so (my brain tells me the day started with a 2, so…).

That was when I decided I would no longer drink Diet Coke.

And the world ended.

Ok, it didn’t.. but you would seriously think that it did for me.

It took almost 3 weeks of intense willpower to break my habit. It took another month for me to get used to not drinking it all the time. And two years later, there are still days where I crave it and just want to crack open a can and delight in the delicious concoction that was my go to drink for almost 20 years.

Yes, I said 20 years.

My love affair of that caramel liquid started back while I was still in the Navy. After spending a childhood only being allowed to drink kool-aid and water, soda was like crack. And I drank it like it was going out of style.

Nectar of the gods -Tom
Nectar of the gods -Tom

A six pack was in danger when it was around me. I could guzzle it down in a matter of minutes. Coffee wasn’t really my thing, so my caffeine addiction was satiated by normal Coke. Old Coke, New Coke.. Old Coke which became the new Coke when new Coke wasn’t rallied behind like Coca-Cola thought it would be… (anyone else remember this time frame?)Diet-Coke-21

I noticed that all that sugar was causing an increase in my waistline, something that I was not ok with. So, doing what every American does when faced with an increase in calories and unhealthy lifestyle choices, I chose the easy way out and started drinking diet.

sweetbrownCause seriously, working out is tiring and gets you all sweaty and makes you tired, and.. you know…

‘Ain’t nobody got time for that!’

As the years progressed, I went from the cans to a cup. I would go into 7-11 and fill up my mug. It started at once in the morning and then again on the way home. It turned into 3 or 4 times a day. Ok, for you math people, that’s 64 ounces of soda 4 times a day, compensating for the amount of ice I used, and adding in the occasional 5th refill and sodas during lunch… that’s … a butt tonne of soda.

I was so well known for my mugs of Diet Coke, that one of my students, on a trip to Atlanta, bought me a Diet Coke thermal mug with a handle, capable of holding well over 56 fluid ounces of goodness.

Oh, and for the record, I had quite once before. Stopped for like a month and a half and after what felt like an eternity, came crawling back to my addiction with almost a renewed fervor for the fresh crisp taste.

Then something just made me decide I was done. I don’t know what it was. But, my mind was made up. It’s been 2 years, (could be to the day, I’m not sure) and I have been Diet Coke free. Mind you, I still drink a soda from time to time, but, it’s nothing like what it once was. It’s usually less then two 12 ounce cans a week, if that. (ok, this last week, it has been a bit more, because of the hospital and recovery and what not).

Besides, these days, it tends to be ginger ale or Vernor’s… cause Vernor’s is awesome!


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