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|03-05-2008, 10:56 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Midwest, U.S.A.
Sobriety n00b (my story)
Well, I posted this elsewhere, but it was suggested I start a new thread here to get acquainted. So here it is...
I had my first beer when I was 18 my first week of college (that was 11 years ago). Shortly thereafter, I joined a fraternity. Probably not the smartest thing to do, since they celebrate intoxication, but I still managed to keep it social. I usually only drank (albeit a lot) one day per week - Friday nights. I eventually quit the frat and turned 21.
At first we just drank in our dorms once in awhile. When I got my own place, we started going out 4 days a week. I still did not believe I had a problem at this time, since I didn't HAVE to go out, I just enjoyed the socialization (and I rarely drank at home, ie, I didn't NEED it yet). Eventually, all of my friends graduated and moved away, and I only went out about once per month and rarely drank by myself. I got a girlfriend (who eventually became my wife). We continued to work in the town of our Uni and rarely went out.
I wanted to move back to my home town and eventually got a really good job. This is where my problem began. Work was extremely stressful and difficult to keep up with (although I was paid well). I started keeping liquor around the house, and then eventually started having some every night to relax. Eventually I started drinking on the job (sneaking out to the vehicle and going home for lunch).
Eventually, I quit this job for what I perceived to be a better opportunity at higher pay. However, the addiction followed. It wasn't as convenient to sneak out to my car, so I started bringing it work (those giant opaque mugs are great for that). Eventually, I got fired for passing out at work several times.
I landed a new job. I actually showed up for the interview with several drinks in me (again, to relax), and they did an on-site drug test (which I did not expect). But I still got the job! Great pay, close to home, but I absolutely HATED it. It was the alcoholics dream job, though. I worked remotely and my boss rarely called as long as work was getting done (and it was, for the most part). At this point I NEEDED alcohol just to focus on my work. Without it, I got distracted and could not focus. I got liquored up at work every day.
Eventually I got fired from that job too. I blew a .2 that day.
Now I'm looking for work again, hopefully sober this time.
About 1.5 months ago, my wife caught me again (we had agreed I would stop, but I snuck it). I was sick of the fighting and lying, so I decided to quit cold. At 1am in the morning, I felt like I was going to die. Extreme naseau, dry heaves, shaking, and a tingling in my chest. I'm used to all of these - they've happened before. However, this was different. The chest discomfort was localized to the left side of my chest and arm. I had read that extreme alcoholics quitting cold were at a higher risk of stroke, etc. I went to the ER to make sure I wasn't having a heart attack. I wasn't, and they prescribed librium. I took the librium and was sober for 5 days. I decided to have "one beer". One turned into 2, 2 into 3, 3 into 4, etc. Then I bought another bottle of rum, and I went back to my old ways. Eventually, I discovered the librium helped me get drunk faster (another big mistake).
About 3-4 weeks ago I got real liquored up and passed out. My wife was supposed to be gone that evening but discovered me. I woke up and she took me to detox at the hospital. I was there for two days and felt it was useless (plus I found out insurance was only paying for the first day), so I left. Back to the booze again, sneaking it around.
About two weeks ago I got fired from my job from the passing out at work.
I call it "hitting bottom" and not "rock bottom" because I know I could be a lot worse off. I still have my wife, my house, and my freedom. I have gotten no DUIs and haven't killed anyone.
I was living with my parents for awhile to give my wife and me time to cool off. I got into a fight with my parents, so decided to drive around and eventually to sleep outside (getting REALLY liquored up in the process). Even though I had blankets, I decided it was too cold to spend the night in my vehicle. I decided to drive to a hotel (big mistake, I'm not even sure how I made it there).
All I remember was exiting my vehicle and then waking up in a pool of blood. Apparently I had slipped on the ice (no thanks to the alcohol) and got knocked out briefly. I got a gash on my forehead that was bleeding pretty badly. I asked someone for help and they called an ambulance. I blew a .32 at the hospital.
I got stitched up and stayed a night in the hospital, wearing the most uncomfortable neck brace imaginable. They thought I might have had neck trauma (fortunately, I didn't). The next day was my first day of sobriety (6 days ago).
The scar makes a good daily reminder of what alcohol does to me. I call it my "dumbarse scar".
Look at me Now
I'm currently looking for work (not so easy with my history of firings). I've talked to numerous counselors, all of whom strongly recommend I go into a 30 or 90 day treatment program. I do not like the idea of that. I'm not sure what I'm going to do next, but for now I take it one day at a time.
I also went to an AA meeting, but decided that wasn't for me either. Much of the discussion was about God, which was uncomfortable for me as an atheist. I though perhaps, until I figure things out, that I could find a support group online that might have less to do with religion and more to do with sobriety and support. So here I am!
I've been sober for 6 days now (a personal record for the past two years). I've started smoking, which I think is disgusting, but it's the only thing I've found that makes the cravings go away for an hour or two and give me some peace. I don't want to be a smoker, but right now, my #1 focus is getting sober.
I never realized how much alcohol is around - advertisements, TV, etc. I went on a ski trip this weekend (day 3 of sobriety). On the way back on the bus, everyone around me got liquored up like it was about to be banned or something. Cracking beer cans and the sweet aroma were sheer torture! I made it through the day, though!
I worry I will fall off the wagon again. I dream of being a normal person who can have a beer with dinner or occasionally drink with friends. I'm sad that I cannot have much fun again - no more bars, no more new year's parties, no more social events where alcohol is a centerpiece, weddings being even more unpleasant than usual, and living with the terrible cravings. I crave it 24/7. It's quite depressing for me.
In the end, what matters most to me is my wife. I would do anything for her (I just wish it hadn't taken this long). If I were to lose her, I would be devastated. She's been very supportive of my rehabilitation, but I feel sad for all of the B.S. I've put her through.
|03-05-2008, 11:04 AM||#2 (permalink)|
with a new light in my eyes
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Littleton, Co.
Welcome Sir Marty, I'm so glad that you found us.:ghug2
The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, or not to anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.
|03-05-2008, 11:06 AM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: WA, USA
Blog Entries: 45
Welcome to SR! Good for you for doing something about the problem. I'm sure your life will be much better without the boooze. I'm on day 7 myself and I know how depressing and frustrating it is, but we just need to hang in there. They say it gets better as time goes on.
|03-05-2008, 11:19 AM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2008
Hello Sir Marty,
Welcome to SR , I'm new here. I'm on day 10 this time. It's bloody hell. When I lived in Sydney the AA meetings pissed me with the God thing so I stopped going, but now I've let it go because its about me right? Everyone is different. I've found a good group down here in the south of France and although we're small the meetings do me right. Not only that this forum is a fantastic place to vent, learn and ask questions. When I thought I hit rock bottom I kept bouncing up and down so never knew rock bottom. Things will get better.
|03-05-2008, 11:53 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Scottsdale, AZ, one big happy dysfunctional family!
Welcome to SR Sir Marty, and many thanks for sharing your story!
And welcome also to ermine, glad you've both joined us, there's always room for more in recovery!
"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty, and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming---*WOW-What a ride*!"
|03-05-2008, 12:19 PM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: 49 degrees north
Welcome and great share, Sir Marty.
I think you have taken a big step. I hope you are careful.
You "blew" some very high readings. I cannot even imagine drinking at or passing out at work. I don't say that critically, but as an observation. You might consider seriously the recommendation you received of seeking out a treatment program. There is only so much that "will power" and "white knuckles" can accomplish.
I look forward to hearing of your progress. You have come to a very good place.
Peace and serenity to you and your lady,
|03-05-2008, 04:11 PM||#7 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
I know exactly how you feel when you said, "I'm sad that I cannot have much fun again..." Everyone always says, "you don't have to drink to have a good time." And while I am finding fun in other ways, it's really hard to compare sober fun and drunk fun. I try to think of it this way: at least when you have sober fun, you can always remember it!
Try to focus on the bad things about drinking; it's harder to miss it that way (and it's the one time in your life that being negative is encouraged).
Welcome, and good luck!!
|09-04-2008, 10:46 PM||#9 (permalink)|
Join Date: Sep 2008
Blog Entries: 1
I really believe that you should take the advice of the counselors(since they are certified in helping addicts and clearly you are struggling with quiting). Going to rehab will give you a stress-free routine schedule where you will certainly not use and they can even give you meds to help with the cravings. If more than one counselor has recommended rehab then don't ignore their advice. It is difficult to stay sober but more difficult to do so alone.
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