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Old 10-14-2019, 01:02 PM   #81 (permalink)
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We are well overdue for an update on this ol' thread. But my absence hasn't been a bad one, just been really busy and was visiting my friend this weekend like I mentioned before.

It was a wonderful time. It was relaxing and just really enjoyable. We didn't have any super concrete plans, we just hung out and went out to eat or chilled on the couch to watch TV and chatted. We played with her dog, also chatted with her husband, played with our makeup collections, etc.

It was really nice to spend a significant amount of time with her since over the past 1.5 years we've only been able to have dinner for an hour or two every so often. Plus she seemed really happy that I actually made the drive to visit her.

To make it drinking related, as this is an alcoholism forum, her husband does have an impressive liquor shelf with bottles upon bottles of whiskey, wine, other hard liquors like holy **** was there a lot. I had the dumb thought for about a half second that I could sneak in there and drink out of any of those bottles after we all went to bed, since I was on the first floor. It was just a fleeting thought and I knew I wasn't going to do it, but like???? come on brain. Let me rest.

But otherwise it was great. I feel so much better and more positive than the last few weeks and this is just a testament to perseverance and working on recovery.

Still doing my best and still sober, so that's all that matters. Onward to the week ahead.
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:29 PM   #82 (permalink)
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Great update, dpac. Sounds like a wonderful weekend with your friend. Oh yes, I can relate, that pesky thought about drinking, thankfully, it’s just a thought and they’re fleeting. I’m really benefiting from meditation. I don’t particularly enjoy it, but I’m transfixed by how my brain goes off on tangents, without my input, like it’s on auto-pilot. For instance, I’ll be meditating, I’ll hear a certain noise outside, a crow calling. I’ll go back to the breath, my brain will instantly recall a similar crow noise from years ago, then look at the scenario and people there when the noise was made, then recall what a particular person in that scene did to me! And if I didn’t keep returning to the breath and ignoring this stream of thought, I’d be dragged down into a vortex. Because, sadly, my brain has a negative bias, and doesn’t remember good things, only bad experiences.

Sorry, I rambled, but this is what I’ve found recently, and the outcome is, thoughts are just thoughts, they arrive and pass. Apparently, we have, as human beings approximately 70,000 thoughts a day. There must be a lot of irrelevant and irrational thoughts amongst those to discard!
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Old 10-15-2019, 07:37 AM   #83 (permalink)
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Hey Tatsy!

That thing about how thoughts are fleeting have really helped me in my sobriety. I use a lot of CBT techniques with my anxiety and stuff too, so the basic principles apply. They're just thoughts, and they can't hurt me or make me do anything. They're like clouds or the weather....just let them pass over.

I tried meditation and I know it's supposed to be good for you but I'm like you....my brain is so wired all the time it's tough to sit and try and focus on anything without a million thoughts happening at once. Maybe I should give it a shot again.

Thanks for the comments tho! It's nice to know ppl are reading, even though I'm posting for my own accountability.
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Old 10-15-2019, 09:32 AM   #84 (permalink)
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It sounds like you are doing really well dpac. There are lots of disadvantages to living alone but one of the advantages is that you don't have to have drink in the home. I would struggle if I did because it would creep into my thoughts.
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Old 10-15-2019, 12:46 PM   #85 (permalink)
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Thank you for your kind comments, dpac! I really persevered with meditation, and I found, eventually it helped. It highlights the auto-pilot programs running in my brain, I find it fascinating. There’s a free app called Headspace, of course it really wants to sell you more, but the free app I found sufficient.

I love your avatar, is that your cat?
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Old 10-21-2019, 08:23 AM   #86 (permalink)
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Well here we are again. Another update. Y'all can yell at me if you want about this whole thing, but I need to write it down because I'm still processing it.

Trigger warning for talk of suicide. (Not me, but someone else)

Manfred contacted me about two weeks ago, saying he was done with all the mess he had. I said, okay great, lets go out again and see what happens. We of course, had a really great time, because we work well together. Hopes were up. I didn't mention it because I wanted to see how it went. I wanted to just tiptoe real quietly around this situation.

Then, Friday. He calls me past midnight Thursday, I don't answer. Then when I text him in the morning, he said that his ex had threatened to kill herself again and that he had to take her to the hospital. Anxiety all Friday, knowing that I had to end things. He didn't talk to me all day, sent me a weird text about how he hoped that I was enjoying the opera, then finally, after I was home, I called him.

He said that he went to go visit her and brought her some clothes. He said that if she had killed herself he would have been devastated. She then said "Well why would *you* be devastated."

So. We can clearly see the manipulation going on here. I told him I couldn't do this with him. That this wasn't his problem to deal with and he needed to call her parents and have them take care of it. He said "I don't think they're going to do that" because they didn't care about it Thursday night and didn't visit her Friday either. He said all his friends and family told him this was ******* absurd and that he shouldn't be doing this. He said that if this is enabling, he'd rather do that then have her kill herself because of him. He said "I told you I had a lot of baggage" to which I responded "I can handle baggage, but I can't carry it if you don't." I cried a lot, because I was so hopeful. But this situation is way too ****** up for me to be involved in, even a little bit. I can't play second fiddle to a woman who clearly has codependency down to a T. He does too, if I'm being honest.

I'm still kinda sad about it, but I know I did the right thing. But he just laid down and took it. Didn't say "I want to be with you" or "I can do better." Just that he knew she wasn't faking it, because y'know, he knows her pretty well. Not to be so callous, but if you're going to kill yourself, you just do it. You don't threaten to do it, you don't talk about it, and you sure as **** don't as why someone would be devastated if you died. I know I couldn't be as important as this other woman, but it still sucks. He also said that he "[didn't] want to be dealing with this at all" but he had to because he needed to be able to live with himself.

All of this just made me realize a lot of things, things that I've been thinking about for a while after getting sober. It's really, really easy to fall back into self destructive behaviors when it's all you've known for a long time. Negative attention is still attention, and a lot of times we engage in these behaviors because yeah, we are trying to punish or hurt ourselves, but also because our trauma makes us special. If we get better, we're not special anymore. There's no reason for anyone to give us special attention. Because even if we're not doing it consciously outright, we want people to care about us. And that's the way to get them to do it. Of course this isn't true for everyone. But for me, all of the self harm I caused myself was in part some small way to get people to give a **** about me.

I thought of this because while I was dealing with all these emotions this past weekend, the AV of course jumped up my ass and started telling me to drink. The thought of falling apart over this, breaking my sobriety, and making *sure* Manfred knew about it was so delectable. It was a way to hurt him, even though I was hurting myself. It was a way to get attention from him, make him care more about me, make it so that he wasn't done with me. Or I could sit in my car and listen to sad music and cry, wallow in my self pity and hold onto that sadness for as long as I could because it made me unique in some way. Go back to thinking that I'm a damaged individual who can't be loved or love anyone else, because I'm just so ****** up. It's tempting, for sure. But I had to really sit with those thoughts and understand the reasons behind them.

I did listen to a little bit of sad music and cry in my car on Saturday, and I allowed myself to sob openly Friday night after I hung up the phone. But I also went to a local farm with my mom Saturday afternoon and got pumpkins and apple cider and ate my mom's partner's burnt ends that won him second place in a local meat smoking competition. We watched Halloween wars on Food Network and then I drove home, listened to a little more sad music, cried, and then went to bed. Sunday felt easier. Today even more so.

I'm not falling apart over this. There are urges to drink, sure, but how absolutely stupid would it be to throw my sobriety out the window over some man who can't get his own **** together.

I mentioned before the sort of novelty in normalcy. This is one of those times. When I realized that I didn't have to fall apart, or start drinking again, or do whatever dumb **** I used to do to cope with my feelings. I could choose differently and yeah, that doesn't make me special but it does make me strong.

That's definitely something to marvel at.
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Old 10-21-2019, 12:05 PM   #87 (permalink)
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I think you are extremely insightful dpac. Not to mention intelligent, hardworking and honest.

You did the right thing for you. Well done.
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Old 10-21-2019, 12:39 PM   #88 (permalink)
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Oh yes indeed, Iím marvelling at how wonderfully you handled all of that! You should be very proud of yourself, dpac. The building of emotional resilience shines through that post!

Welllll, Iíll have my say (although itís your thread) but I believe you deserve far better than the type of relationship he currently has on offer, far better. Until he extricates himself, with proven and lasting conviction, from his previous relationship, heís too entangled with his past, and just dragging you into his resultant ongoing mess. I really hope he leaves her (which doesnít sound likely for the reasons youíve noticed on both sides) or if not, you can save yourself from further distress, by walking away. Because you are worth a genuine, full commitment.
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Old 10-21-2019, 04:05 PM   #89 (permalink)
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You don't need drama to make you special dpac - you already are!

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Old 10-22-2019, 07:52 PM   #90 (permalink)
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Thanks for your comments everyone. I know I made the right choice but it still really sucks. Almost like drinking, if only because I'm trying to convince myself the situation isn't *really* that bad. Jeez.

Everyone's proud of me cuz I made the right choice but sometimes the right choice is stupid.

Anyway, another day today. I took tomorrow off as sort of a self care day. Gonna clean my apartment and sleep a lot. Then I'm going to a wrestling show, which I'm really excited for. Should be fun. I'm more or less waiting til next Monday when I can go talk to my therapist about all of this. Just gotta hang in there.

Still sober, and no big thoughts to drink really. So that's been a relief. Just sad and frustrated and restless, but I also went to boxing tonight and had a lot of angry punching energy. So it was a good class. Then I got a milkshake so all is right with the world for now.
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Old 10-25-2019, 07:36 AM   #91 (permalink)
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Another update. A week since the Incident. And you know what? Life kept moving forward.

This weekend is the second zooboo weekend, so more cute kids in costumes that I can look forward to. Other than that, I don't really have plans. My friends want to go out for Halloween, but I told them I am not going to any bar for any reason. Kinda made some people mad but gotta protect that sobriety. Going to a bar would be a really stupid decision right now especially, but also any other day of the week.

So I'd rather just watch a scary movie alone if it means I stay sober.

Other than that, not much to report. Trying to move forward. One day at a time.
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Old 10-25-2019, 08:09 AM   #92 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpac414 View Post
Another update. A week since the Incident. And you know what? Life kept moving forward.

This weekend is the second zooboo weekend, so more cute kids in costumes that I can look forward to. Other than that, I don't really have plans. My friends want to go out for Halloween, but I told them I am not going to any bar for any reason. Kinda made some people mad but gotta protect that sobriety. Going to a bar would be a really stupid decision right now especially, but also any other day of the week.

So I'd rather just watch a scary movie alone if it means I stay sober.

Other than that, not much to report. Trying to move forward. One day at a time.
Good call. I'll go to a bar - for like an hour MAX. And I would need a good reason to do so, i.e. meeting a particularly good friend and we were getting food as well. Anything beyond that holds zero appeal. It's just not fun watching other people get drunk. Not only is it boring, but you also feel bad about yourself.

Hope you've got mates who get it. It's hard when you're in your mid 20s though to have that kind of perspective on stuff. Sounds like you're in a good place in any event which is great. Keep powering on.
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Old 10-28-2019, 08:33 AM   #93 (permalink)
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So this weekend felt like a soul rehab, if that makes sense.

I got a bunch of stuff I liked from the grocery store after crying for thirty minutes to my mom in the parking lot, and the past two days were spent watching fun halloween shows and movies, eating cheese and crackers, making a weird halloween ginger bread house made from chocolate cookies, and ice cream sandwiches.

I feel like I've crested the hill of this particular sadness - kind of like when you have a fever and things suck until it finally breaks, then you can really start working on getting better.

There was a moment when I really, truly thought I might drink. It was right before I called my mom. I had that guilt of knowing that I was going to do it, but was definitely going to do it anyway. I thought I should call someone and talk to them for a little while to see if it helped before I did anything else, and it did. Tools of fkn sobriety, people. We gotta use them or we don't stand a chance. In the end, the whole thing felt cathartic, and I set myself up that night with some good food, apple cider, and a scary movie.

Life moves on with or without us, whether we like it or not. We can choose to confront ourselves, open our eyes, and live each day, or we can decide to hide. This certainly isn't the worst thing that has happened to me, and I'm sure it won't be last. It's hard to sit there and face something head on without an escape route. But like a bad storm, it'll pass. Leave a little wreckage, maybe a downed telephone pole, but it's nothing I can't clean up.

I'm getting too vague and metaphorical. I'll close it here. Just....hang in there everyone. You CAN do it, even if you feel like you can't. Just let yourself cry in the parking lot of Trader Joe's for a half hour and get some ice cream sandwiches, and maybe after that things will seem a little brighter.
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Old 10-31-2019, 06:06 AM   #94 (permalink)
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This is a wonderful update, dpac.

I'm glad you are here to tell the tale.

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Old 11-04-2019, 09:03 AM   #95 (permalink)
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Thanks, O. I'm really trying hard. It's exhausting a lot of the time but I'm managing.

Good news is that I have Saturdays off from the zoo for the time being, since the weather is getting colder and there's no need for two people in the cash office both days. The dip in money isn't great, but the day off for sleep and mental rest is definitely needed. I took an accidental four hour nap on Friday and then slept for 14 hours until 11am on Saturday morning so clearly it's a sign.

I went to a craft show with my mom on Saturday though and it was fun. Got some xmas presents and some artisinal soaps, which I love. We then went back to the house and cooked dinner and watched a scary movie. (Highly recommend Eli on Netflix!! Cool take on a horror trope, if not a kinda dumb ending). So it was a nice weekend.

Still moving forward. Focusing more on my master's application which is almost done, and the coming holidays. Doing my best.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:18 PM   #96 (permalink)
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Time for another update. Nothing much has been happening, but I figured I'd check in and take some time to reflect.

We finally hired someone to help me with the billing at my office and she starts tomorrow. So that'll be a relief to have someone to split the work with. Kinda anxious to be honest, because in some ways I feel threatened, like she'll do a better job than me or something. Which you know, maybe she will. It was never my intention to stay in that job forever, and if there's someone better suited then great, good. I still need to do my best. It's just weird because I feel like i should feel happy, and instead I'm just feeling competitive. Brains are weird.

I also have a psych appointment tomorrow, so I'm going to have to leave exactly at 3:30 and I'm supposed to be training this girl tomorrow and as I'm typing this I'm realizing I'm actually having a significant amount of anxiety about it. Ugh.

I still get somewhat random pangs of missing good ol' Manfred, which I wish would just go away already, because it's annoying. Another emotion to have to deal with that I'm super over having to deal with.

BUT. This post is feeling negative, so I'm going to practice some gratitude. Here goes.
- I discovered a new band this week! It was recommended to me by a friend and I am digging them very much. Jukebox the Ghost is the name. Good vibes.
- I had a quiet evening to myself and ate some bomb stuffed peppers with mashed potatoes and carrots which was so good so that was nice.
- Because the new billing person asked for a higher salary than what I currently make, they are "bringing me up to speed" with mine and increasing it by an entire 10k/year. Which y'all. That's ******* life changing. Granted, I was barely making anything to begin with so this is pretty much bringing me up to a livable wage, it's still amazing.
- My cat is sitting with me and purring and I love her.

So things are all right. They're standard. And that's not a bad thing. I always have to resist putting myself in situations that aren't great for me because I need to get some kind of rush. It's that lovely addiction talking and I have to cool it. Alcohol, drugs, sex, risky stuff, it's all the same. Just feels like the weeks are moving so quickly and I can't really stop for a second and just enjoy the time as it goes. Maybe I need to work ore on mindfulness or something, I dunno.

Otherwise, I'm still doing very well. Always improving.
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Old 11-13-2019, 02:53 AM   #97 (permalink)
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Sounds like you're on a pretty even keel to me, Dpac! Fingers crossed your new employee is a goodun and that feeling of protecting your turf will dissipate quickly. Keep us updated.
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Old 11-14-2019, 10:03 AM   #98 (permalink)
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Well done on the pay rise dpac! That and not drinking should help a lot.
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