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Reunited, and yes……it feels so good

As anyone who knows me would expect, I made about 5,000 resolutions for 2007. The first and most important relates to quitting a habit that shall remain nameless. Hints: It’s perfectly legal, totally addictive and unhealthy and doesn’t involve food, beverages or shopping.

After successfully conquering res #1 for a week, I embarked on res #2, which shall henceforth be known as “the most stupid resolution ever”. I tried to give up Diet Coke.

I’ve been drinking Diet Coke for 25 years. I don’t drink a lot, but having 2 immediately upon getting up in the morning has been a part of my routine for a good decade. Even when I’m in a remote foreign location, or say, Montana (ha), I make it a priority to track down and stock up on Diet Coke for the duration of my trip. My friends and colleagues worldwide know that DC is a requirement for me and that the quest for it will be a necessary mission upon my arrival.

So, why give it up? I try to eat mostly organic and avoid consuming preservatives and other scary artificial elements, and the Diet Coke habit just doesn’t jive with that goal. Once I decided to stop, I was psyched, thinking about how proud I’d be to eliminate that nasty beverage from my diet. I mean, what is actually IN it, anyway….other than the secret addictive ingredient? I figured I’d be fine sticking with coffee for my caffeine fix and switching to a juice spritzer at 6 a.m. for some fizz.

Umm, no. A week into my DC deprivation I started feeling like I was going CRAZY. I couldn’t wake up in the morning and I couldn’t sleep at night. I was irritable and felt as if I were in a fog. Suddenly Diet Coke seemed to be everywhere…..cans in the hands of my coworkers, logos on trucks….all mocking me and accentuating my pain and deprivation. By week 2, I starting talking about caving. Each day I’d convince myself to hang on for a few more days thinking it would get easier, but it didn’t.

Ironically, this manic state allowed me to completely forget about the challenge of res #1 which I thought would be incredibly hard to accomplish, especially since I’m surrounded by people who continue to indulge in the habit. On the contrary, my crazed longing for a Diet Coke with Lime completely obliterated my desire to break res #1. I’d think about it, then my thoughts would immediately shift to how badly I wanted a Diet Coke.

And so I officially wave the white flag on the most stupid resolution ever. I confessed my imminent failure to everyone who would listen on Friday night. Saturday morning, wearing my failure like a badge, I bought 2 cases of Diet Coke with Lime at Target, then stopped at a gas station for 2 cold ones. I went home, crawled into my favorite spot on the couch and cracked open the BEST DIET COKE EVER. The fizz, the dash of lime and that inimitable cola taste….sigh. Don’t even think about taking that can away from me…..