I have a morning ritual. Okay, who doesn’t? Well, mine’s a little odd, so I thought I’d write about it.
If you’ve seen me post on other sites, you’ll know I’m on disability. It’s a long story, involving a gastric bypass and a pair of broken ankles. (Take heed of the warning on that site about the photo of my ankles—it involves angles that weren’t meant to exist on the human body.) Anyway, my morning ritual is built around those and several other medical problems I’ve been hit with over the years.
I begin each morning with food, a cup of coffee, and a glass of iced tea. Yes, both coffee and tea. Why? Pills. I’ll explain shortly.
The tea comes first. It’s a powdered, caffeine-free, artificially-sweetened mix (without Splenda (a.k.a. sucralose)—I’m horribly allergic to it). I usually run out from refilling my glass overnight. That means I normally start by making a new gallon. Yes, it’s a lot, but I’ll down it all by the following morning. Pour a big glass of it over ice and move on.
My pills have to be taken with food, but not too much food or I’ll get sick to my stomach. I usually grab some leftovers or microwave something frozen.
While the food nukes (if necessary), I pull a cup of Café Britt Dark Roast from the Keurig 1.0 machine. Order the Café Britt if you can. It’s our favorite, and we’ve tried practically all of the dark roasts that come in K-Cups or their derivatives. (Keurig and K-Cup are trademarks of their respective owners. There, that’s out of the way.)
With tea, coffee, and food in hand(s), I’ll head into the living room (a.k.a. my writing space) and set everything down. Food plate on the sofa, drinks on the table, morning news on the TV, and morning mail/websites on the laptop. There. The stage is set.
Barring TV and web stuff, food comes first. It goes down to buffer what’s about to follow—pills. A dozen different prescriptions and doctor-ordered supplements, every morning, including one for Chronic Pain Syndrome. Literally a shoebox full of pills, plus some whose bottles don’t fit into the box. More than I care to list. I get each dose out and put them in a little coaster/tray while I’m eating.
Now, let me ask you a question—have you ever tried taking gelcaps with hot coffee? I don’t recommend it. They can melt before they get out of your mouth. Hence the iced tea. Once the food’s gone down and settled a bit, I’ll go for the tea and start taking pills. Gelcaps first, followed by regular pills. Or the other way around. With iced tea, it doesn’t matter.
By now, the coffee is at a drinkable temperature. I can’t go for it immediately—gotta let the pills and tea settle a bit this time. When everything is ready, I’ll down the coffee. I may even go back for seconds. Caffeine is essential, but not for the reason you’re probably thinking.
It’s for the pills.
Yes, the (expletive deleted) pills again. They gang up on me, especially the painkillers and the antihistamines. An hour or two after I take them, I’m knocked out. If I don’t have sufficient caffeine in my system, I’ll have to take a mid-morning nap. If I skip the coffee altogether, that nap stretches into the afternoon.
I type this at around 8:30 a.m., after finishing said ritual. I can already feel the pills starting to conspire against my consciousness. This is another part of why I’m on disability. I’m amazed that I’ve been able to write the sci-fi novel with all of this going on every morning.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a second cup of Café Britt to fetch. I’d like to stay awake for a while yet.