22 March 2011

Pregnancy requires sacrifice (Part 1)

Glorious: steamy, dark, and strong... with a splash of milk and a small spoon of sugar.  Mug in one hand, some thought-provoking reading in the other- that's possibly the best morning routine a girl could ever hope for. Place a sweet puppy at my feet and a doting husband to my side, and I'm flying as high as a kite.

Well, that is, until I found out I'm pregnant.  I was dreading the sacrifice of coffee looooong before I ever considered getting pregnant. Maybe even before I was married.

When I was growing up I always heard people say, "Pregnant women can't have caffeine."

I love coffee. I learned to love coffee in Bolivia. I made it through Architecture school on coffee alone << while the rest of my classmates were taking whatever pills or shots or snorts they could get their hands on to stay awake >>.  I was devastated at the thought of giving up coffee for a year or more- of course I was assuming you shouldn't caffeinate your breastmilk.

Then one Sunday I was listening to Zorba Paster, and a preggo called in to ask about caffeine.

What the doc said was this sort of obvious statement of fact, yet evidently I'd never thought of it this way before.

If caffeine were that bad for pregnant women, then every caffeinated beverage in the US would be covered in  labels with warnings that all "women who are pregnant, nursing, or may become pregnant" should avoid these drinks like the plague.
There would be laws and regulations on it, too. << Can you imagine? Barristas the world over being bound by a law forcing them to tell every preggo, "Hate to be the one to inform you that it's illegal for me to serve you. I'm going to have to ask you to leave this establishment." Talk about inducing a riot. >>  We simply cannot place caffeine in the same context as alcohol and nicotine.

Thank God.

Nevertheless, when I peed on a stick and saw a plus, I started wondering just what to do about my beloved coffee. I'm a daily two-cupper. After doing some reading regarding recommendations, and talking with the doc, of course, I've opted to cut back to one a day.  When I'm flying solo at the breakfast hour, it's typically a spoon of instant in a mug of hot vanilla soy milk << Don't gag! It's quite hearty and delicious. >>.  Other days when I've got company for breakfast, i.e. the hubs, it's a regular drip cup of java with a splash of leche.

Every day, it's delicious.

And every day the joy I find within in my mug is followed by grief. We're talking deep, provocative sadness << likely induced by the excessive amount of progesterone that has hijacked my emotional stability >>.  When I arrive to the bottom of my coffee mug, I pause for a moment to shed a tear. Not kidding. Every. Single. Morning. Just one. << Okay, so it's a metaphorical tear. Don't  judge a pregnant woman. >>

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