If you know me, you know I love coffee. I mean, like, really, really love coffee. I drink it as if it was as healthy as water.
But something you probably don’t know is that I used to hate coffee. I mean, abhor, wish it was banned from the planet, hate. Somewhere along the line, something obviously changed.
As a part of my recovery I question everything I do. (And you thought that scrutiny was reserved for religious leaders.) Every single thing, from the clothes I wear to the colors I like to the music I listen to. Everything.
As I’ve been decluttering my life this past month, it’s given me a greater opportunity to examine a lot of things I do and have. One thing I have is my coffee center.
As I’ve been cleaning this month, though, I’ve noticed it hasn’t had a whole lot of use lately. In fact, in the past few months, even before my friend K bought me this fabulous kettle for Christmas…
…I was already beginning to drink more tea. If you asked then, I couldn’t have told you why.
After I received the kettle, I thought that was the reason. It was such a nice gift from such a sweet friend, of course I wanted to use it often. Which, still stands…you won’t find me nuking my water anymore. 😀 And, I could be wrong, but I’m fairly certain my tea tastes worlds better from the kettle than it ever did before. 🙂
Last week, though, I realized that my reason for the switch to coffee was a covertly rebellious one. See, Zelena hates coffee. I mean, really hates. He would often make a face at me once I started drinking it. I had sampled it while we were dating. I was at school and there was one of those nasty coffee vending machines they used to have back in the 80s and 90s that made the worst coffee possible.
Even then, I think it was rebellion. My mother hates coffee too.
But my earnest love for coffee didn’t occur until after I was married. In hindsight, it makes sense. As my therapist often says about these things, I could not control anything around me, but this, this I could control. This could be one thing I did.
It sounds petty to people who have never experienced long-term trauma, but I think it’s pretty common among those of us who have. I read stories of others in their trauma and funny things they did in their rebellion against their abusers/torturers/captors, like the American POWs who were being tortured in a Japanese prison camp run by people who didn’t speak English. Sometimes they’d swear at the soldiers while they were smiling and acting condescending, among other things that seem funny to us, but they were a way of maintaining their personhood while the Japanese attempted to destroy that.
Coffee doesn’t seem like that big of a thing to you, I’m sure, but as Zelena took everything from me and I had no way to defend myself, it was one thing I could make mine and maintain at least a shred of myself before he completely destroyed me.
I’m examining a few other things to see if that’s what they are, and if they are pure rebellion and I need to let them go now, or if they were a part of me I was able to hold onto despite his hatred for it.
As for coffee, yeah, I still love it. Maybe when I drink it now I’ll recall that I’m a survivor, because despite the worst my parents and husband could do, I found a way to get through and rise above them, and live.