I Went a Week Without Coffee and This Is What Happened

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Coffee and college students is like a car and a tank of gas. It’s our fuel, the way we’re able to move. I have personally been a coffee drinker since 2nd grade, I even remember the exact moment I started drinking coffee. My brother had a black tumbler filled with Uban coffee and Coffeemate Crème Brulee creamer, he asked if I wanted to try it, and that my friends, is the beginning of my “coffee addiction”. I put it quotes because it’s not that I’m addicted to it; I would just rather have it than not have it. Coffee has been a problem though, I’ve used countless Starbucks cards, K-Pods, coffee filters, creamers and many more. Thinking about it, it’s probably not the best thing for the environment.

Being a public lover of coffee has its perks, people always ask you for advice when it comes to trying out a new drink, it made my job as a barista easier and people give you their Starbucks cards because they just “aren’t coffee drinkers”. It does have its downfalls too, like your friends constantly betting you that you won’t be able to go x number of weeks without it, which brings us to this article.

Below is a personal and somewhat dramatic account of my week without coffee, without Pumpkin Spice, without a Caramel Macchiato, without trying the newest Starbucks drink Maple Pecan Latte while all of my friends are raving about it. The day before, I fueled up for the upcoming week. I had coffee for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, and late-night cups.

Sunday, September 24th, 2017

So one would think knowing I will be unable to drink coffee for a week, that I would go to bed at a reasonable hour. That did not happen, I stayed up till 9 in the morning! Don’t worry though this diary didn’t end on day one like many believed it would. (Have a little faith my peeps.) Even though my friends actively tried to get me to drink coffee by taking me to Dunkin Donuts at 8 am, I didn’t falter and I didn’t order the Pumpkin Macchiato. I made it through day one with a 6-hour nap and two Monster Energy drinks. Day one is finished and with a fast beating heart, I can promise you that I will make it through the week. While I love coffee, I love proving people wrong even more. One upside to staying up till 9 am is seeing the sunrise, even if we walked to the Point at 6:45 in the morning which is on the wrong side of town for a view.

Monday, September 25th, 2017

Having a 9:40 class is easy when you have a cup of coffee next to you, scared for my health after the two monsters in six hours, I did not turn to the green drink but instead a green apple from our lovely Point Café. I read an article that an apple would wake you up more than coffee. I don’t know about you but coffee to me isn’t just about the caffeine. It’s about the experience, the flavor.

I’m not saying that being unable to drink coffee is hard, I’m just saying that it’s more of an annoyance than anything else. Why are non-coffee drinkers so hard on coffee drinkers? The answer, they don’t have coffee in their system so they’re grumpy and bitter. To make matters worse, my lovely roommate who after this week I will learn to love again, decided to get a Venti Pumpkin Spice Latte while I was stuck drinking a Venti Very Berry Hibiscus.

Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

Today was a long day, a day that I think anyone would want to run and grab a cup of coffee for. Every time someone mentioned coffee it was like a stab in the chest. I don’t need coffee, I have gone days without it actually. It’s the fact that someone is telling me I can’t that makes it hard.

I wouldn’t say I’m a coffee addict after this bet, but I will say that I am definitely a stubborn person. I started craving a PSL around mid-day it took me until 7:00 pm to remember what I used to do at work when someone asked for “no coffee”, so I went down to Starbucks and simply just ordered a PSL without coffee so essentially a Pumpkin Smoothie. It wasn’t great to be honest, I don’t recommend it, I definitely recommend getting one with espresso. After adding half a jar of cinnamon, it was drinkable. Below is evidence I didn’t get coffee in my PSL as it would be darker, also evidence of the worse spelling of my name in the history of my time going to Starbucks.

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

            Halfway through the week and I’m still carrying on. I had to give a speech today and let me tell you it wasn’t easy and I couldn’t even turn to coffee to comfort me. Honestly by this day I wasn’t feeling the need for coffee. I realized that drinking coffee just makes the day better but it isn’t a necessity. Waking up and getting ready for the day is more fun with a cup of coffee on hand. However, if you are craving coffee for whatever reason, try a Pumpkin Spice Chai! It tastes just like it but it’s really sweet so I take two less pumps of pumpkin and I swear it became my coffee substitute for the rest of the week.

Thursday, September 28th, 2017

            I had a test today. I stayed up late studying and I could not have coffee. I considered just ending the bet for the sake of my sanity and my grades however I prevailed. I made it this far and I wasn’t going to end it now. I did good on my test and not even coffee could’ve jogged my memory with certain facts. I went back to Starbucks and got a Pumpkin Spice Chai with a side of eye-roll from the barista but that’s fine, I think she just needed some coffee.

Friday, September 29th, 2017 (National Coffee Day)

            Who picks the worse week to start a coffee bet? This girl, I missed out on the free medium coffee at Dunkin Donuts with a purchase of a medium coffee. I mean in all honesty I would’ve gone missed out on that deal anyways because I’m #teamstarbucks. While the creator of my bet said I could at least have a grande at Starbucks, I couldn’t do it. You can’t go five days without it just to falter at the last temptation. I also had people to prove wrong. Never test a girl that is more stubborn and headstrong than her mother.

We went to Target and luckily Starbucks was closed. Target is heaven, Target is even more fun when you’re a little tired. My friends like to keep me out late unbeknownst to them that I’m slowly falling asleep with every step. @cybermegan gave me her costume cape on the ride home and I fell right asleep.

Saturday, September 30th, 2017 (One day left)

            I woke up and got ready and headed down to a meeting to discuss an upcoming Cosplay and Coding event for ITSO. Look out for flyers in the future guys! Today was a good day though, I even facetimed my mom back in Arizona who was…in a coffee shop. Apparently, she isn’t the best listener because she was very shocked when I told her I was on a coffee bet. I call her every day and told her about this bet multiple times. However, despite not being a good listener she told me she was proud of me and knew I could do it, as she drank her vanilla cold brew with my Uncle.

Sunday, October 1st, 2017

12:01 a.m. I drank my first cup of coffee. I actually forgot it was midnight until I applied the time filter to my snap. If you don’t have me as a friend as snapchat, let me tell you how that moment went. I went to our Keurig, loaded in a K-Cup, played “Sober” by Childish Gambino and let the coffee fill the cup. It was the perfect song for that moment.

Today was great and I was instantly a happier person. After seven long days I was finally able to order a regular PSL and even the barista was proud of me.

Let’s hope I don’t have to make another coffee bet because that doesn’t help anybody.

Special Thanks: To my roommate Leia for dealing with my all week long. To my friend Cassie that made this bet with me and showed me that I have enough will. To my friends who told me not to give up on National Coffee Day, and to coffee for still being there for me.

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About The Author

Shelby Nicole Fink is currently a Public Relations and Advertising major at Point Park University. She's been drinking coffee since 2nd grade and doesn't plan on quitting any time soon. She's the copy editor of her schools newspaper the Globe, Marketing and PR Coordinator for Her Campus Point Park, and Social Media Coordinator for ITSO. Follow her on Twitter @shelby_fink1998 , Instagram @shelbstersfink. She can be reached by email @[email protected]