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An ‘actual challenge’ this Lent? No morning joe

By Elise Pannemann
On March 30, 2022

As a lifelong Catholic, my family and I had always participated in the tradition of Lent.

In the past I have given up things such as chocolate and other forms of sweets, temperaments (like not being quick to anger) and other material goods.

All of those “vices” that I had chosen to quit in the name of Lent, however, were things I believed I should quit, or even things I thought would be easy to quit.

This year I have decided to give myself an actual challenge.

From the age of 13, I have developed a dependency for caffeine, coffee to be more specific.  I’m far from a morning person and I always pour a cup whenever I wake up to make the early hours of the day more bearable.

Nowadays, if I go even one day without drinking coffee, I become irritable.  So as Lent was approaching, I decided to quit something that I have developed a dependency on.

The first week was extremely difficult. As I suspected, my mood became increasingly more foul, and I found myself losing energy and feeling sluggish.

However, during the second week I actually started to feel better.  My mood improved and I began to wake up feeling even more cheerful than any morning I had woken up with my daily cup of coffee.

Lent is a time of reflecting on God’s love that was demonstrated though Jesus’s sacrifice of dying on the cross.  However, I chose to see it as more than that. 

I like to view it as a time to reset and demonstrate to ourselves that it is not the material goods in this world that keep us happy, and that in giving them up we can then find out more about ourselves and what truly matters.

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