A desperate, wounded teen has a choice to make that will impact the rest of his life.
Anyone who knows me knows my affinity for coffee. Oh, just give me a good, strong cup of coffee sweetened just right, and I’ll be your best friend! It’s such a warm, comforting drink, and the extra pep of caffeine is exactly what I need sometimes to keep me going.
Slowly, over the course of the last year, I’ve begun to lose my taste for coffee. It’s strange. I’ve bought the expensive gourmet stuff … I’ve brewed the old fashioned Folgers. It’s just not the same. Even more strange … it would taste amazing every now and then, but only when I used a big spoonful of sugar. Unfortunately, if I do that everyday, I end up with blood sugar drops a couple of hours later that have me gobbling up something to compensate, so that my hands will stop trembling and I won’t hit the floor with dizziness. If I don’t have sugar in the mornings, I don’t have blood-sugar drops.
I’ve tried creamers. I’ve used dairy and non-dairy. I got used to stevia to cut back on sugar. I’ve sometimes even dumped enough sugar in there to count it as a dessert. Still, slowly, my love for it progressed into tolerating it out of the sake of habit.
Recently I went through a 10-day detox as part of The Daniel Plan, and it required cutting out all sugars and sweeteners. My first cup of coffee following the detox was tasty (thanks to the added sugar), but the next day I started using stevia again. I just couldn’t handle the bitterness. I cut the decaf/caf measurements to 3/4 decaf and 1/4 caf, and still had outrageous heart reactions.
Today I tried something different. I love tea every now and then, but I have to be in the mood for it. Considering I couldn’t seem to get my coffee “right” anymore (and coffee drinkers will all agree that their cup needs to be “right” to be enjoyable). So I took advantage of the super-fun gift a friend gave me recently. It’s called … wait for it … TEAZE. (No, it’s not the ’80’s Canadian Rock Band).
It diffuses the tea, and then you set the thing over your mug, and it releases the perfect cup of tea from the bottom. It’s SO. MUCH. FUN.
I don’t usually like tea in the mornings because the flavor just isn’t strong enough. Today was totally different. It tasted PERFECT. I added a little almond milk and a dusting of stevia. Oddly, I couldn’t taste the bitterness of the stevia in the tea, and it was absolutely perfect. My heart didn’t go nuts from the caffeine, and honestly, I felt so fancy.
The “favorites” shift doesn’t just extend to coffee, though. It goes to my clothes, too. The stuff that used to be my favorite all of a sudden I’m like, “Why did I ever wear this? I don’t even like it!” Then I started searching online, getting ideas for what I DO like. A devastating reality hit me … I don’ t even KNOW WHAT I LIKE.
Kris has a beautiful coworker with a golden heart who sent some clothes to me through him. At first, I didn’t even allow myself to try them on, then I took a couple out of the bag, fell madly in love with them, then put them back, because they were JUST. SO. PRETTY. and I thought she was interested in selling them. I didn’t feel good about spending money on myself, and plus, I was in a tough place emotionally, and I was so frustrated with my own body. To prevent self-inflicted salt rubbed into an already aching wound, I just sent them back.
Oh, she wouldn’t have that. She sent them right back to me through Kris (poor Kris, he’s such a good sport!) and said I could just HAVE them. My eyes welled up with tears … could she really be serious?? They were all so beautiful, and made my own clothes I’d had for years look like rags! My “favorites shift” was so drastic, walking into my closet almost felt like I’d walked into the closet of a stranger … but it was all MY stuff! It made me feel confused, like I didn’t even know myself. It made me wonder if something were wrong with me! I finally allowed myself to try on the clothes she sent, and everything FIT PERFECTLY. I couldn’t believe it. They made me feel so pretty, and I hadn’t felt pretty like that in quite a while. Then … I couldn’t help it … I cried. I was so overwhelmed by her kindness, and was deeply blessed by her generosity. She had no idea the struggle I’d been having, my clothes, and my personal sense of style. It was such a well-timed gift, from God through her, and I was both humbled and grateful. My favorites now come from the bag she gave to me, and it helped me get an idea of what I DO like.
Here’s another “favorites” shift … I used to thing nonfiction books, particularly religious or self-help ones, were SOOOOO BOOOOOOOORING. I’d open one up, needing to give it a try, because the content seemed to really be something I needed to hear. Then I’d become aware that I’d just read the same paragraph eight times because I was mentally drifting while reading. A good fiction book was something I could finish in just a couple of days. Fiction audiobooks were LIFE. Welp, now I can’t get enough of podcasts, (hello, Crime Junkies!) and nonfiction books are all I want to read! I’m zooming through them by the stacks each week. Christian books by authors such as Nabeel Qureshi, Francis Chan, and John Piper are incredibly energizing and exciting to read.
I guess as the years go by, our tastes change. I just never expected it to be so sudden and drastic.
So what do you do when your favorites suddenly aren’t your favorites anymore?
You roll with it, explore, find your new favorites, and move on! It’s all part of personal growth, and honestly, it’s a super-fun adventure!