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Old 06-14-2019, 12:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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It gets worse before it gets better


Manage your expectations.

You are slaying a huge beast, every day for a year until the beast gets small and whines instead of roars.

Four weeks is worse than one week. Four months is worse than one month. Six months is still hard. 8,9 and 10 months you start running into cardinal events: birthdays, vacations, holidays, dinners out. When you round a year you have been sober for all major holidays and nearly all triggers, difficult circumstances, depressive episodes, disappointing life setbacks and losses have been traversed completely sober. At that point you realize that you donít need to drink. Itís been long enough and you have coped with everything all year on your own devices and you have developed an inner emotional strength.

You may feel light on your feet sometimes a few weeks in, a few months in, enjoy those times. You earned those moments. But do not expect it to be light and easy all year. It simply wonít.

You can get through it. You can live life without it. It doesnít take an enormous amount of strength to avoid hangovers, to never have withdrawals again, to master your panic attacks, to avoid humiliation and pity, to develop personal integrity, to heal your relationships with family, friends and most importantly, yourself.

Itís not strength, it is adapting to a new and alien way of life. Itís very, very different. Your brain is going to feel weird. And you will feel weird for what seems like an eternity, yet when you consider the number of years you spent drinking your time getting sober is a blink of an eye.

My husband sometimes wakes up with a hangover and I say, ďsorry sweetie. I donít miss morning headaches and anxiety. I never have to have those mornings again.Ē Iíve said it enough that he has spent a lot more time sober lately. Itís strange to see him compel himself to drink sometimes, as making yourself drink just to drink is really weird. I can see how unnecessary it is, itís sort of like hitting yourself in the head with a baseball bat to feel endorphins from the pain...and I have gladness in my heart that I donít have to drink anymore.

Please know that you will not necessarily feel better after one month or five or maybe even eight. We are all different, so itís a little different for everyone but for me and for many....this takes a long time. You may, in fact, feel a hell of a lot worse. Itís ok. It passes. If you keep posting here, the complete depths of desperation and cravings and head games your addiction is giving you instead of giving in, we can be here for you. You probably wonít like what we have to say. Sometimes, we will say the wrong thing. Sometimes, we are just as angry at your addiction as you are. We know your suffering. It hits close to home. So we are sometimes way off the mark.

But, weíre here, and we know what it feels like, and we arenít going away. So post instead of drinking. Post how ****** it all is. Get honest. Get angry. Snap if you need to.

Just donít drink. I promise with enough time, it will all even out.
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Old 06-14-2019, 12:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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This is so well written and profound. Thank you.
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Old 06-14-2019, 12:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thank you
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Old 06-14-2019, 01:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Excellent post, this deserves to be pinned.

I knew the enormity of the challenge that was ahead of me and I STILL underestimated just how tough early sobriety was going to be. However there was a pleasant surprise waiting for me once I got through the worst of it.

My goal was to live a simple life sober without white knuckling my way through daily existence. Nothing more, nothing less. After working my program and letting the mind and body heal I now wake up happy every morning. Being in a joyful mood is my default setting these days.

I'm 40 years old, I was NEVER happy going back to my childhood years. Now I'm happy which I wasn't even expecting, I just wanted to be able to live without craving for a drink every second.

Sobriety makes these miracles possible.
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:08 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Good stuff!
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Old 06-14-2019, 07:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Excellent post, this deserves to be pinned.

I knew the enormity of the challenge that was ahead of me and I STILL underestimated just how tough early sobriety was going to be. However there was a pleasant surprise waiting for me once I got through the worst of it.

My goal was to live a simple life sober without white knuckling my way through daily existence. Nothing more, nothing less. After working my program and letting the mind and body heal I now wake up happy every morning. Being in a joyful mood is my default setting these days.

I'm 40 years old, I was NEVER happy going back to my childhood years. Now I'm happy which I wasn't even expecting, I just wanted to be able to live without craving for a drink every second.

Sobriety makes these miracles possible.

I see people going back out because it’s really tough and they believe that’s just their sober status quo.

It’s not.

It just feels like it is, because the healing process is so long, and the healing comes in tiny increments, so small it is not noticeable until a big chunk of time has passed. Each day is one small thread in the quilt, so a few days in, you only have a scrap: a year later, you have something so much bigger than that.

Congrats on your sobriety, and finding your joy.
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Old 06-15-2019, 02:02 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Sass,

Thanks for saying what needed to be said.

You will help a lot of people with this post.
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Old 06-15-2019, 06:14 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Terrific post, thank you! What exacerbates recovery is other mental illnesses like depression. Thank God for a terrific shrink and anti-depressants.
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Old 06-15-2019, 09:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Stayingsassy View Post
I see people going back out because itís really tough and they believe thatís just their sober status quo.

Itís not.

It just feels like it is, because the healing process is so long, and the healing comes in tiny increments, so small it is not noticeable until a big chunk of time has passed. Each day is one small thread in the quilt, so a few days in, you only have a scrap: a year later, you have something so much bigger than that.

Congrats on your sobriety, and finding your joy.
THIS. This should be sticky posted for all newcomers.

I don't think I've ever seen it written better.
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Old 06-16-2019, 12:16 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Sassy thank you soooo much for sharing this this. Three months in again for me after years of trying to achieve a full year. I had a bad day yesterday and av was screaming at me that my life was hopeless I was a mess etc. Felt down. I posted I re engaged I spent my day doing constructive stuff. I didnít pick up and today I feel so much better. I need to remember this that it is going to be hard and iv got a mountain to climb makes the rubbish days easier to accept. Thank you very inspiing because the thought of picking up again terrifies me cos I know weíre it leads tried enoug times. I need to learn that the next difficult day is to be expected and that itís normal in recovery. Thabks again great stuff
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Old 06-16-2019, 10:36 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Yes, life will always throw us curve balls. How we choose to handle them is up to us. I'm just glad that I no longer feel the need to numb myself to life's ups and downs.
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Old 06-16-2019, 12:21 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Early recovery is hard, you've got to remember it will get better the longer you're sober. The early days are not as good as it gets.
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Old 06-16-2019, 01:06 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I have to agree that this worry about "this is as good as it's going to get?" was true for me--hard days strung together, feeling flat and empty, until one day I realized it was getting easier and I was feeling "good"--a feeling I'd nearly forgotten.

I can't believe I ever went back out after that. . . but it's coming back again
and I realize only now how much I missed it.
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Old 06-16-2019, 01:52 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Sassy thank you soooo much for sharing this this. Three months in again for me after years of trying to achieve a full year. I had a bad day yesterday and av was screaming at me that my life was hopeless I was a mess etc. Felt down. I posted I re engaged I spent my day doing constructive stuff. I didnít pick up and today I feel so much better. I need to remember this that it is going to be hard and iv got a mountain to climb makes the rubbish days easier to accept. Thank you very inspiing because the thought of picking up again terrifies me cos I know weíre it leads tried enoug times. I need to learn that the next difficult day is to be expected and that itís normal in recovery. Thabks again great stuff
I am incredibly proud of you for not picking up yesterday.

THAT is the kind of self care we need. You deserve peace, Eve: by next spring when those flowers come up, you will be able to relax those shoulders.

Three to six months is grit your teeth time, and you are doing FANTASTIC. Next time you have a bad day, be sure to check in and see if we can help you. We support you. We understand. Weíve been there.

Youíre breaking the cycle.
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Old 06-16-2019, 02:51 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Stayingsassy View Post
Manage your expectations.

You are slaying a huge beast, every day for a year until the beast gets small and whines instead of roars.

Four weeks is worse than one week. Four months is worse than one month. Six months is still hard. 8,9 and 10 months you start running into cardinal events: birthdays, vacations, holidays, dinners out. When you round a year you have been sober for all major holidays and nearly all triggers, difficult circumstances, depressive episodes, disappointing life setbacks and losses have been traversed completely sober. At that point you realize that you donít need to drink. Itís been long enough and you have coped with everything all year on your own devices and you have developed an inner emotional strength.

You may feel light on your feet sometimes a few weeks in, a few months in, enjoy those times. You earned those moments. But do not expect it to be light and easy all year. It simply wonít.

You can get through it. You can live life without it. It doesnít take an enormous amount of strength to avoid hangovers, to never have withdrawals again, to master your panic attacks, to avoid humiliation and pity, to develop personal integrity, to heal your relationships with family, friends and most importantly, yourself.

Itís not strength, it is adapting to a new and alien way of life. Itís very, very different. Your brain is going to feel weird. And you will feel weird for what seems like an eternity, yet when you consider the number of years you spent drinking your time getting sober is a blink of an eye.

My husband sometimes wakes up with a hangover and I say, ďsorry sweetie. I donít miss morning headaches and anxiety. I never have to have those mornings again.Ē Iíve said it enough that he has spent a lot more time sober lately. Itís strange to see him compel himself to drink sometimes, as making yourself drink just to drink is really weird. I can see how unnecessary it is, itís sort of like hitting yourself in the head with a baseball bat to feel endorphins from the pain...and I have gladness in my heart that I donít have to drink anymore.

Please know that you will not necessarily feel better after one month or five or maybe even eight. We are all different, so itís a little different for everyone but for me and for many....this takes a long time. You may, in fact, feel a hell of a lot worse. Itís ok. It passes. If you keep posting here, the complete depths of desperation and cravings and head games your addiction is giving you instead of giving in, we can be here for you. You probably wonít like what we have to say. Sometimes, we will say the wrong thing. Sometimes, we are just as angry at your addiction as you are. We know your suffering. It hits close to home. So we are sometimes way off the mark.

But, weíre here, and we know what it feels like, and we arenít going away. So post instead of drinking. Post how ****** it all is. Get honest. Get angry. Snap if you need to.

Just donít drink. I promise with enough time, it will all even out.
This is perfect and I needed to read this right now. Thanks for sharing this. Had a tough few weekends and has been emotional for me, not enough to make me want to run back to drinking but sure as hell has woken the av.

​​​​​Im grateful for here to read and think. Thanks
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Old 06-16-2019, 03:38 PM   #16 (permalink)
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This is perfect and I needed to read this right now. Thanks for sharing this. Had a tough few weekends and has been emotional for me, not enough to make me want to run back to drinking but sure as hell has woken the av.

​​​​​Im grateful for here to read and think. Thanks

I find summers tough in general. I am securely sober. But I still am thinking of beer a lot, as we prepare to go camping and we relax for the summer. I donít entertain the thoughts, but they are there. I can honestly say I miss beer in an offhand way, but I donít miss the death trap of my alcoholism and they cannot be separated.
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Old 06-17-2019, 12:59 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I find summers tough in general. I am securely sober. But I still am thinking of beer a lot, as we prepare to go camping and we relax for the summer. I donít entertain the thoughts, but they are there. I can honestly say I miss beer in an offhand way, but I donít miss the death trap of my alcoholism and they cannot be separated.
Yeah I get that completely with beer, infact so much so I have taken to AF beers and I love them, I still feel the refreshing after without the alcohol. And it doesn't make me miss the alcohol in it either it's just purely for the taste. Have a lovely time camping.

I'm just back from a trip and the people I was with where drinking, and one suggested I could 'have just one' bearing in mind I'm pregnant also 🙄 it made me feel so uncomfortable and out of my depth I panicked, like I'm a drip now or something. Had to go back to the room early and I burst out crying. My brother is also drinking alot and had a scary experience recently and I seen he is still drinking and my mind for whatever reason said 'if you can't beat em....' but then I caught it in its tracks and came here. I don't want to drink, and I know my mind is just playing the old tricks on me. I actually despise alcohol now, like really have so much hate for it. Which is good.
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Old 06-19-2019, 11:36 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Yeah I get that completely with beer, infact so much so I have taken to AF beers and I love them, I still feel the refreshing after without the alcohol. And it doesn't make me miss the alcohol in it either it's just purely for the taste. Have a lovely time camping.

I'm just back from a trip and the people I was with where drinking, and one suggested I could 'have just one' bearing in mind I'm pregnant also 🙄 it made me feel so uncomfortable and out of my depth I panicked, like I'm a drip now or something. Had to go back to the room early and I burst out crying. My brother is also drinking alot and had a scary experience recently and I seen he is still drinking and my mind for whatever reason said 'if you can't beat em....' but then I caught it in its tracks and came here. I don't want to drink, and I know my mind is just playing the old tricks on me. I actually despise alcohol now, like really have so much hate for it. Which is good.

Yep, my mind plays the old tricks on me too, so much that I do not drink AF beers, because getting accustomed to that taste is dangerous for me. Iíve gotten to the point now where the thought of being impaired sounds horrible.

I actually bought my husband some alcohol for his birthday slash fatherís day weekend. I was in Trader Joeís picking out beer and I realized that I didnít know how to buy beer anymore. I stood there a long time. The beer looked repellent. I started getting this growing sense that I could smell it and feel it in my stomach. It was a very real feeling. I became nauseous and walked outside quickly. I thought I might throw up. I could smell that fresh beer smell and I could feel that poisoned chemical overload feeling...It was very, very strange.

I bought his alcohol anyway, because he just doesnít have my problem, I donít want it, and damn itís hard to buy gifts for men!

So I have the same Initial thoughts, the ďI miss drinking beer thoughtsĒ but when my brain goes further, I realize I am completely and totally turned off by it.

That was a process, it was a kind of brainwashing I did on myself.

I have shared this but I DO NOT recommend people in early sobriety getting that close to alcohol, part of being sober is knowing where you are in sobriety, and not letting yourself get near something if you know you canít handle it. Not drinking AF beers is one choice I made, buying beer for my husband is another, but I know where I am.
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Old 06-19-2019, 12:01 PM   #19 (permalink)
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If you ever find yourself pine - ing for a beer than please REALIZE that you are falling for a marketing gimmick and a delusion.

When you tasted your first beer at age 10 (or however old you where) and almost gagged when that disgusting flavor filled your mouth.....well....THAT WAS THE TRUTH. That is what beer tastes like.

Then we got brainwashed and mentally-conditioned by mainstream society and began to see the retched poison as some 'nectar of the God's' or that it was NORMAL to drink ourselves into a black-out and to spend money to make ourselves sick.

Label it POISON. Because that is what it is. We are not "missing out" on drinking the rott-gut.

I dont miss the "good old days" of hanging my head inside a toilet and certainly dont miss the Morning Terror the following morning with heart palpitations and the flashbacks of disgracing myself at a party or having to apologize for the hurtful and venomous words I spoke to someone while under the influence of the drug.

When you shatter thru the illusions the real truth is that active drinkers are pathetic and weak people who need a crutch to dance, to socialize, to do all the normal things that non-drinkers do effortlessly.

Looking back on it.....I just wish I had seen thru the lies, the mirages, the illusions sooner so that i did not have to waste over 15 years of my life in a drunken stupor. Just imagine how good our lives would be right now if we had never taken even a single drink.

Label it POISON and you wont miss it. Alcohol is an expensive and foul tasting poison that steals your dreams and sucks away all your energy, your motivation, destroys your relationships and leaves you empty and hollow.

I would like to throw a bottle of beer against the wall in ANGER at how much it has taken away from me.

No enemy in my life has ever hurt me as badly as alcohol has.
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Old 06-19-2019, 12:55 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Yeah, I miss the act of doing something in that moment, not the drinking of beer.

I didnít gag when I tasted beer for the first time though. .

What I really donít miss: Which is how I know I have firm sobriety, is the feeling of drinking. I donít want to be in that state any more. I like being me. The thought of being in the drinking state scares and nauseates me. It has only connotations of sickness and pain, now.
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