Would you like a cup of tea? Simple, straightforward? My mother generally will only have one if you're having one, which infuriates my husband. My answer will depend on my state of mind. As a people pleaser, I will want to have one if you're having one, so that we match and I will also want to support your generosity. However, I will also be wary of putting you to trouble or having one on my own and therein comes a problem. I won't actually know if I would like one because I will be torn between the two. If completely left up to me then I would hedge my bets that the answer would end up being yes, but more than one please as one is never enough. Tea is my early morning and end of day drink, it wakes me up to the day and settles me down at the end. It's calming and comforting, a bit of a hug in a mug. I find it extremely difficult to drink out of cardboard cups so struggle to take it in during the day which can then result in too much coffee. Coffee is a different problem for me. As a latte girl, I need a bit of substance to it, watery types don't fit and, interestingly, my preference would be to drink it continuously. Having become much more aware of its impact especially in terms of anxiety I keep my caffeine levels in measure and decaf early and in the afternoon, when I remember. Occasionally it will get out of hand and then a restless and sleepless night will follow with all the consequences that brings. I've also replaced the 'pub' with the 'coffee shop'. The place to go to escape the containment that home brings. The place to think clearly without bounds, to relax, to find solitude, to change my surroundings and remove whatever pressure is facing me today. You won't be surprised to know that I do most of my writing in a coffee shop. It's a huge relief to know that my children haven't spent much of their childhoods in pubs, that they don't have conscious memories of my drinking. Previously I thought it would be cool for them to be part of that grown up scene, to connect with the sociability and have a deeper understanding of this life. What madness my head used to contain, what possible good could it do a child to regularly see the mess that drinking brings into the lives of supposedly grown up people. It's a substantial part of my gratitude to AA for the change that has come to the lives of my children. There may be cake issues to deal with but it doesn't compare to what it could have been. I may be a bit off the wall after too much coffee and sugar but at least I have never been abusive. My husband knows what that is like, it remains to be seen whether he will ever be able to forgive and forget, but for now my children are ignorant of that part of my life and long may that be the case.
And with that, I'm going to put the kettle on.