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For those tortured by PAWS (Post Acute Withdrawal Symptoms) and who fear they might go mad Part 3



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For those tortured by PAWS (Post Acute Withdrawal Symptoms) and who fear they might go mad Part 3

Old 05-31-2021, 07:18 AM
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Hello fellow PAWS sufferers. Welcome to LoveDD and Window. Keep reading and posting. This thread has been vital to giving me hope. There is so little information about PAWS out there. I don't know if I would have made it this far without this thread. I am about 5 and 1/2 months sober. My first try after decades of drinking.

Betty I hope your depression has lifted some. Graceful I hope your blahs are not so blah. Vinny I hope you are getting a window. Sobernord I am glad your waves are not as intense.

It occurred to me the other day that PAWS is like a snowflake. No two are alike. But most of us share some symptoms.

I have had a few days recently where my dizziness/rocking/balance feeling subsided. It was a nice relief. But I still had other stuff going on like anhedonia, anxiety, feelings of doom, depression, numbness and tingling. I am curious for those of you that have windows of relief do all your symptoms go away or just some?

Today I feel the rocking motion, some numbness and tingling, anhedonia, anxiety, blah and a lack of appetite. Fortunately, the insomnia has been subsiding pretty consistently.

Take care of yourselves everyone. Keep fighting. Thanks for reading. Keep posting!
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Old 05-31-2021, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by CBS62 View Post
I have had a few days recently where my dizziness/rocking/balance feeling subsided. It was a nice relief. But I still had other stuff going on like anhedonia, anxiety, feelings of doom, depression, numbness and tingling. I am curious for those of you that have windows of relief do all your symptoms go away or just some?
!
That's good glad to hear you're getting some relief.
You know it's funny because when I'm feeling good I play this game in my head called "but what if?" and it's like I'm alright but I'm always keeping my guard up for something to start feeling off again. It's kind of like that feeling when you make a wrong turn down the wrong street at night and you know it's a bad neighborhood and even though the streets empty you know there's someone watching you from the darkness. But when I'm staying focused on something keeping busy and what not that thought gets shoved in the back and I feel like a regular person. I had a few nice days where I was 100% symptom free. But it's a delicate balance though like I've noticed if I get a few nights of bad sleep, eat a little too much junk food, try doing to much in a day etc. it can leave me feeling odd and off my game. But as I said the days are getting better and I'm feeling more free with each passing month. I look forward to the day I can leave this all behind me and just get on with life and hopefully someone out there can back track through all these past threads and read our stories and be encouraged to keep trucking along knowing one day that they too will find their way out of this little slice of hell!
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Old 06-01-2021, 04:10 AM
  # 63 (permalink)  
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@CBS62

Hey CBS, thank you for the well wishes.

It's been a tough journey. Very very tough. Sometimes I want to drink just to alleviate the symptoms but I know they will come back ten-fold if I do so I soldier on.

Most of my anxiety is now situational-based which is a nice change of pace from months 3-6 when it was constant and excruciating. The anxiety and depression seem to be exclusive, when one lifts, the other one tries to make an appearance. I've been having lots of good days but as soon as even a little stress comes my way it's back to the races.

Oh well, Looks like I'm on track to still have symptoms in my second year of recovery (which is coming on July 6th). The thing that significantly lifts my spirits is the fact that everything has been getting better and better and I'm hoping year 2 will see the end of this whole struggle.

But what can you do.. Life goes on and so do I.
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Old 06-01-2021, 06:13 AM
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CB,

Thank you and I wish you get windows of complete healing from your symptoms. I'm at around 19 months and the symptoms you explain I did heal from. The only symptoms which is bothersome now is some leg pain or restless leg I get in the morn and the usual drive to get get going I'm lacking. Just a sort of blah feeling. Other than that, the rocking/ I still get but it has subsided greatly. Compared to months 6 and 12 I have see so much improvement. All for the better. Still on the road to recovery. A day at a time. Wishing you all the best

Vinny
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Old 06-01-2021, 06:26 AM
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Hi Graceful,

Hope you are doing better today. I have been in my second year and it sure does get better. It's a slow journey but it takes us in the right direction. I spoke to a few on here and they mentioned that the second year is where the real change happens for many. We all have different symptoms as you are aware. Some heal sooner and some later but healing is happening as long as we're sober. I notice that the more I focus on my symptoms the more they tend to affect me. I try and turn my focus away to what I need to get done and what is important and keeps my mind clear and those symptoms tend to disappear until I think to myself "wow I'm feeling great and this window has been great for 2 days" . Once my focus goes to when will these symptoms come back 😫, I start to notice them kicking in. I will continue to stay focused and keep healing and get healthy. Have a great day. Be well all and hope you all feel great today.

Vinny
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Old 06-02-2021, 03:39 AM
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Thank you for your kind words, Vinny.

I totally agree, the obsession with the symptoms will make them double in strength. I try to keep occupied. Perfect time to get all that work that had to be finished done. As long as I don't think about PAWS symptoms, they tend to be pretty ambient.
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Old 06-02-2021, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by TheSoberNord View Post
My earliest days of sobriety was similar. My first 3 months I was constantly tired and would get easily fatigued from even doing the lightest of activities. You got to remember 5 months is still pretty fresh into sobriety even though it feels like a long time. I'm 13 months sober and now that I'm seeing the bigger picture of long term sobriety and recovery I accept that this is a long haul and it's going to take time to feel normal. But it does slowly get better over time. I'm way better off than I was during months 6-9 and even a little better than I was just one month ago.
As for the benzos I don't know much about them never took them but I do know you don't want to just suddenly stop taking them either. There's some other members who post here who know more about that stuff but from what I gather that's a conversation with your doctor you should have and typically they slowly tapper you off them over time.
Sorry I think you misunderstood. I donít take benzoís. The two things I want to get rid of are fatigue and anhedonia Iím sure with time they will improve.
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Old 06-03-2021, 05:53 AM
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Originally Posted by LoveDD View Post
Sorry I think you misunderstood. I donít take benzoís. The two things I want to get rid of are fatigue and anhedonia Iím sure with time they will improve.
I see, my bad. But yes the fatigue is pretty normal in early sobriety my first 3 months were the worse with that and some people have it longer. But like all things everyone is going through here it does pass it just takes time.
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Old 06-03-2021, 06:09 AM
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Who still has vivid drinking dreams? My early days of sobriety I didn't get them nearly as much as I have these past couple months. Right about the time when my PAWS really started getting bad at month 9 I started having constant drinking dreams where sometimes it was there and I felt tempted to grab one, other times I started drinking, and then times like last night where I was putting them away like I used too. Even woke up feeling a little rough thinking to myself I can't believe I just flushed a whole years worth of progress down the toilet! Though it is a nice feeling when you realize it was all just a dream and your sobriety is still intact.
I know drinking dreams are pretty common but just wondering how many long termers still get them or how long they lasted for them.
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Old 06-03-2021, 12:24 PM
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Hi SoberNord and all,

I do have drinking dreams occasionally. They usually involve me drinking wine which was my poison of choice. When I wake up I am relieved that it was just a dream and that I had not actually picked up. Though I do sometimes fantasize that I can drink wine (moderately) again someday I know deep down that is not likely.

I am having some windows of my dizziness subsiding for a few hours every couple of days. That is great. However, I have a new health concern that the doctors and dentist can't figure out. My glands in my neck are swollen and my throat is a little sore and it has been going on for about a month. I have been tested for all kinds of things COVID, strep, ear, throat, thyroid, and esophagus issues and no conclusions. Driving me crazy! I don't think this is a PAWS symptom. Possibly TMJ. My jaw hurts as well as I am having some headaches and tightness in my neck. I do clench my teeth when stressed and I think I do it in my sleep too. Though my husband says he doesn't hear me grinding my teeth. I have also had a few broken teeth. So I guess it could all be related. Perhaps I should now go see a TMJ specialist. Thank goodness for health insurance through work.

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Old 06-03-2021, 01:36 PM
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5 Months

Iím at that place in time whenever I hit a monthly milestone I get very mild pawsy symptomsÖ.Lately its been none to very few and far between but since hitting this 5 month mark, Iím getting that very mild pawsy feeling.

I can tell its diminishing and is getting milder by the month but I canít wait till this disappears altogetherÖI know I still have quite a ways to go so Iíll press on.

Take care everyone
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Old 06-03-2021, 04:38 PM
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The biggest ones for me are:

1) Lack of sleep/nightmares
2) Anxiety
3) Sense of 'boredom'
4) Brain fog / confusion
5) A little increase in sweating/overheating.
6) Insomnia mixed with exhaustion
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Old 06-03-2021, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by bubbapug1985 View Post
The biggest ones for me are:

1) Lack of sleep/nightmares
2) Anxiety
3) Sense of 'boredom'
4) Brain fog / confusion
5) A little increase in sweating/overheating.
6) Insomnia mixed with exhaustion
#1, 2, & 3 for me ☹️
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Old 06-04-2021, 06:30 AM
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Good morning all,

Hope you are all having a great morning and have a great weekend.

Bubba it's #2 , 3, and 4 for me. #2 and 4 being the worst. I notice when I unwind and finally get to sit and take a rest especially at home is when I feel 2 and 4 bother me the most.
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Old 06-04-2021, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by bubbapug1985 View Post
The biggest ones for me are:

1) Lack of sleep/nightmares
2) Anxiety
3) Sense of 'boredom'
4) Brain fog / confusion
5) A little increase in sweating/overheating.
6) Insomnia mixed with exhaustion
Had them all at one point or another. Today it's mostly #2 and #4 but much more milder then it used to be and #1 kind of comes and goes. Also 5 but that's mostly because it's getting warmer here and I don't like anything north of 65 degrees.

@CBS62
That almost sounds like a allergy reaction to something. You've been checked out for those?
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Old 06-05-2021, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Graceful123 View Post
@CBS62


It's been a tough journey. Very very tough. Sometimes I want to drink just to alleviate the symptoms but I know they will come back ten-fold if I do so I soldier on.

Most of my anxiety is now situational-based which is a nice change of pace from months 3-6 when it was constant and excruciating. The anxiety and depression seem to be exclusive, when one lifts, the other one tries to make an appearance. I've been having lots of good days but as soon as even a little stress comes my way it's back to the races.

Oh well, Looks like I'm on track to still have symptoms in my second year of recovery (which is coming on July 6th). The thing that significantly lifts my spirits is the fact that everything has been getting better and better and I'm hoping year 2 will see the end of this whole struggle.

But what can you do.. Life goes on and so do I.
This is so true to my experience as well - when the anxiety waxes the depression wanes. The waves come like uneasiness, then a day or so of anxiety, then a string of days of depression, then a couple of days of springing forward and feeling totally good and normal and positive. I think, Graceful, this is yet another turning point in our recovery - the normal day stretches will get longer and longer until the PAWS stuff finally ends. Unfortunately yes it I think it will be well into our second year, but like so many have said in earlier threads of this topic - for most of us out on the far end of the spectrum about a year and a half is realistic for feeling like we're on solid ground. I don't think I'll be out at two years like Matt the OP - but thank god for him sharing his experience for us to come together and share ours.

Also I wanted to say a "hell yes" to what you said about regular stress and anxiety brings you back to the races. I have been seeing someone on and off through all of this - before I got sober and during my first year - and finally at this point he has had enough. Like in the most empathetic way, but the relationship just never had the right timing and I can't be there for him like he is for me, and he has put up with this for a year and a half. And dealing with that loss feels like a million more times devastating than it would normally because of PAWS and the anxiety and depression. And the fear I feel. And the resentment for PAWS stealing away a year or more of my life. It's a lot - there have been a lot of tears this week. I hate PAWS so much - but it IS getting better. Last week after my days of depression I had three days of feeling exactly the way I wanted to feel when I quit drinking. Like I felt the way I was chasing when I decided to get sober. Those days are going to be more than just a string of two or three - they will be our lives if we just don't drink.
Much love to you, Graceful and congrats tomorrow on 11 months! I'll be there on Monday. So grateful to have you on here to share your experience, strength and hope.
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Old 06-07-2021, 09:02 AM
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Hey thanks for the congrats! And congrats to you today for reaching month 11 as well!

itís been a nightmare of a journey but I see the light at the end of the tunnel.

at reaching month 12 I plan to do a big post about my experience with the first year of alcohol detox but we still have a few weeks before that.

Quick side note: I recently needed to stay awake for something while almost falling asleep and I overdid it with coffee (chugged 6 cups of that cheap stuff). Do not do that folks. Felt like I was going nuts, fired off every single anxiety cell in me. Stay away from coffee if you can, if not - reintroduce it slowly, one cup a day, maybe two. Just a suggestion.
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Old 06-07-2021, 12:10 PM
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Hi to all,

Today is a rough one. The buzzing and anxiety is really draining. It was good this morning then as soon as I got in to work it set off like a time bomb. It's hard to even get any work done feeling like this. Yesterday was a better day and hope tomm is better than this. Wish you are all doing great.

Vinny
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Old 06-07-2021, 12:14 PM
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Hi Vinny, sorry youíre having a rough day. Can you describe what you mean by buzzing? I think I have that too. And the rocking most days.
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Old 06-07-2021, 01:23 PM
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Yesterday was rough. Got hit with some big pawsÖDonít know where it came from but at least it calmed down enough for me to get some sleep last night 🙁😩 Felt a bit better today 😐 Seems like every monthly milestone I get some symptoms. Each one not as bad as the last month but just as bothersome and annoying. Glad itís getting better n better but each time it hits, the temptation to drink it away increases Ö.ugh
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