#BecauseICan('t think of a time without Diet Coke in my life)

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By: Ellie Greenberger 

I remember when I was a kid that I was never allowed to have soda. My mom thought that we were too young to have soft drinks, and we had to wait until we were older before we were allowed to have it.

I remember though that we would occasionally go to breakfast on the weekends. We would sit next to her and she would let us sneak sips of her Diet Coke. It wasn’t something that we were allowed to do normally. While we would do it, my mom would tell us the story of when she was a kid.

She said that her mom used to pour soda in a coffee mug to keep her from knowing what was in the glass. She said that her mother would tell her that she was just drinking coffee in the mornings. My mom said that she never knew that her mom was having soda at breakfast for all those years.

When we moved to Atlanta, Greogia, Coke became even more ingrained in my everyday life.

I took a photo once, with the Coke bottle outlined bench at the Turner Field. It had the benches in the foreground and the whole Atlanta city in the background. I took that photo with my early generation iPhone. It was slightly blurry and out of focus, but it framed the city and I remember thinking that there was something incredible in that.

Somehow as I grew up, I stopped distinguishing from other kinds of sodas. Instead of saying that I wanted a soda, it came out falling under one large umbrella as “Coke.” I could say “Mom can you get me a coke” when the only thing in my house was Diet Coke and there was never any question about if I wanted it or not. I could say “Mom I want a coke” and she would say “what kind?” Coke was always apart of my life. It was ingrained in growing up for me. It was one of those things that I never outgrew, that adapted with me.

Whenever my parents had news, we drove to the gas station and got Coke Icees.

When I got stung by a bee at a young age, my mom told me to put the cold can of Diet Coke on the bee sting. She said that once it felt better and I stopped crying, I could drink it. I felt better very fast.

When I was growing up, my mom had glass coke bottles that sat on our shelving. This past Christmas, my family friend got me some of my own that I could keep for when I had my own house.

When my mom was pregnant and not drinking caffeine, we started buying caffeine free diet coke.

When I starting becoming more adventurous in middle school, I started drinking Cherry Coke.

When I started high school, the thing that I was most excited for was the fact that they sold Coke at my school and I could get at least one everyday.

Today, whenever I have had a hard week, my friends ask me if they can buy me a coke to make me feel better.

Coke is college football games, family events, and dinners with friends. It is fall, winter, spring, and summer. It is late nights studying and breakfast in the mornings. Coke is any time of the day. Coke is running to the vending machine before class. Coke is finding the right gas station with crushed ice. Coke is writing my name on the outside of my cup so that at family holidays I don’t get mine mixed up and Coke is a part of my experience growing up.

Photo from 2014 (I was 16). I opened a glass bottle and said "open happiness" and the rest of my family laughed at me. 

Coke has adapted to always be a part of my life. Coke has continued to grow, creating new flavors as I grow. This time, they have created new Diet Coke flavors such as Ginger Lime, Feisty Cherry, Strawberry Guava, Zesty Blood Orange, Blueberry Acai, and Twisted Mango.

This Thursday, April 4, 2019, Diet Coke will be coming to campus to promote their new flavors! Come check them out and let them be a part of all the moments in your life.