In the hours leading up to the last snowstorm, someone ended an email to me with hopes that I was cozily hunkered down with Twizzlers and wine. I had 95% forgotten that my past includes a Twizzlers habit, and a heaping handful of the shiny red strands would have paired so nicely with the cabernet I sipped at the time. Another thoughtful person brought me a small pack of them a week later and, as divine as they were, this craving has concluded until further notice.
I’ve been described as someone who doesn’t have an addictive personality, even though, like plenty of under-experienced others, I once used the term “addicted” very loosely, prattling on about my “addiction” to caffeine, to sushi, to 2 boiled eggs every morning, to a few more things that needn’t get mentioned online. Much like “hatred,” “addiction” is a strong, overused word choice. Bona fide addiction is scary and a real bitch to reverse. By now, I often know it when I see it, and the sense of helplessness that comes with seeing it makes me envy the people who could be described as terrifically oblivious.
Until a few years ago, I still labeled myself (I’m less without it, it’s the MVP of my day) a coffee addict. But yesterday was the second time I’ve had coffee in about a month, and I don’t feel like I’ve missed anything. This isn’t the first intermission I’ve taken from coffee, and when I do chug it I rarely have more than 2 cups a day. I’ve gone weeks without eggs. I’ve gone months without booze. I probably quit artificially-sweetened soft drinks when I kicked the Twizzlers. Many of us aren’t nearly as dependent on what we’ve tricked ourselves into thinking we’re at the mercy of.