This time last summer we had moved cross country. At some point I realized that the entire move was fueled by a combination of a potent desire for change and copious amounts of Diet Coke.
At the high (or low) point of the move, I was mainlining about four liters a day. It got so bad that more than one person said to me: “For someone who is so careful about what she puts in her body, you sure do drink a lot of poison.”
And there it was. During the year I get by on coffee and tea, and neither in ridiculous amounts. Come summer, however, I rely on buckets of fizzy poison to make it through the day.
I was determined that this year was going to be different. Sure we were moving again. Sure the kids were underfoot for weeks on end (camp was here and there, and much appreciated, but it seemed to be the exception to the rule), but I was going to KICK the Diet Coke habit.
The first order of business was to come up with a substitute. Every night I made a batch of iced tea, stuck it in the fridge, and prayed for rain.
For the most part I was just fine. There were certainly moments where I could smell and taste the goodness that is a cold Diet Coke, where the very thought of the bubbles up my nose and the aspartame in my bloodstream sent me into shivers. But I pushed on and even though iced mint/green tea tastes nothing like Diet Coke, nor does it deliver the same electric thrill, I made it to Labor Day.
This week is a little tricky. New York City was the last corner of earth to start school. I watched all of you send your kids back to school while mine stayed neatly underfoot in full end-of-summer meltdown. To make matters worse, my kids go to schools that are under the impression that small children need to be EASED INTO a full day of school. (Never mind that some of them did a full day of camp with nary a transition or that the little ones are the ones you are most ready to outsource come September.)
My little ones go for fifteen minutes a day for about a week. (Hence, the only easing happening seems to be on my end as I currently feel as though I’m being slowly dipped in a large bucket of full mental collapse.)
By next week, when school actually starts, I may be a complete fucking mess, but I will also be a complete fucking aspartame-free mess.
Victory is mine.