Right out of high school, I worked as a hostess at a restaurant called Shari’s. For those unfamiliar with the chain, it’s like a Denny’s or Perkins. My main duties were to greet people with a smile, seat them, bring them water, and ask if they wanted anything else to drink. Coffee was the drink of choice. Might have been because we were in the heart of Coffee-Town: The Greater Seattle Area. But, my guess is that coffee would have been THE answer whether we were in Seattle, in our adopted home of Orlando, or anywhere in between.
Very rarely, would I hear a request for decaffeinated coffee.
The coffee snob in me would think, decaf?? Why in the world would anyone want decaf when they could have the real deal! I’m picturing myself saying this with a villainous tone, hands raised up, shaking (from caffeine-overload)
There were some exceptions to my rant here such as those who need to cut back on caffeine for health reasons. But for those who “look like coffee drinkers” (yes, I guess I’m stereotyping here), the word “decaf” may trigger a smirk on my face just for a micro-second until I can regain my composure. MY idea of “coffee drinkers” would look like fun-looking people, smart-looking people, anyone older than 17…. they all get a decaf-requesting-smirk…. and of course, if you’re going to get a coffee drink without the caffeine, why not get something obviously different? Like juice??
If I could give my early-twenties self any useful advice, I would tell her (nicely, because I am a feisty one), “instead of smirking, smile, and maybe offer a hug.”
My older, wiser, infertility-struggling self now knows better now to even THINK of judging a decaf drinker! Because a Decaf Drinker is not a weak one! She may be holding on to her last bit of the fun life she had BEFORE she started fertility treatments. She has already given up wine (another vice that grape juice just won’t EVER mount up to), girl time (because her meds are driving her bonkers), and zumba (if she’s going through IVF, her doctor has told her to lay low for a bit)! The ONLY thing she has left is a drink that TASTES like coffee!
So decaf drinkers, be proud! You have found something to fill that little hole in your morning routine. And one day, hopefully one day soon – you will reunited with your beloved drink of choice: Regular Medium Roasted Caffeinated Coffee.