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Not a good day for me, emotionally. (warning: may be triggering)

Old 05-14-2010, 05:31 PM
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Exclamation Not a good day for me, emotionally. (warning: may be triggering)

Had my doctor appointment today so that I could be tested for Hep C, HIV, etc. I'm supposed to call early next week to get my test results. I've been trying really hard to not beat up on myself, but it's hard to not think things like 'what kind of an idiot has unprotected sex with an intravenous drug user that has Hep C and who knows what else?'. I do try not to let those thoughts linger too long in my head though.

And the truth is that I've been doing really well since ending things with my ex, about two months ago. I haven't been obsessing and worrying, and I've been working hard to take care of myself. But part of taking care of myself is facing the potential consequences of my actions, and taking appropriate measures like seeing a doctor to get tested. And that stuff doesn't feel so good, it's a little different than the 'take a bubble bath' kind of taking care of yourself.

Just having to say the words to the doctor felt really crappy, the shame really kicked in. And so in that frame of mind I then went to the lab to get blood drawn. I am really not too fond of needles and get dizzy easily, and to top it off I have really small veins...anyway, it took the girl about 45 minutes to draw blood. It hurt so much, she tried both arms multiple times and wanted to try my hands but I refused. She finally used a 'hot pack' on my arm and was able to find a vein. The entire time I was sitting there I kept thinking about my ex and it really hit home that he does this crap to himself voluntarily, in fact he loves it and misses that needle when he's not using. Something about that made me so sick to my stomach and all kinds of emotions were just slamming me while I was sitting there getting stuck and injured.

That sick feeling and the shame has stuck with me the rest of the day. I'm such a perfectionist that I never quite know how to handle it when I feel like I've 'messed up'. But the truth is that I have been 'messing up' a lot, in many different ways, for awhile now and pretending like it wasn't happening, and now is the time for me to start fixing things. I'm just having trouble facing the music without feeling like it's destroying my self-worth. It was all too easy to focus on my ex and his myriad of problems, and to ignore the things falling apart in my own life, but now I don't have that excuse anymore.

That's all, just needed to vent a little.
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Old 05-14-2010, 05:46 PM
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I can relate, to a degree, excuses are wonderful. They keep us in a suspended state of non reality, and do comfort us--for a period of time--then excuses become our enemy.

Now what? Must we be honest with ourselves, must we face our most dreaded truth?

Yes, if we want to be healthy and move forward with our life in a positive manner.

You are heading in the right direction, keep going, you will make it.
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Old 05-14-2010, 06:13 PM
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You are taking baby steps towards healing, and working through painful stuff. It's going to hurt for a little while, but you will be stronger for it.

I was going through some things awhile back when filling out a really intense detailed job application, which included a background check where you had to answer a million questions on things you had done/not done since you were 16 kinda thing... which had to be truthful since it was part of a polygraph. There wasn't anything huge I had done wrong, but little things kept popping into my mind all day... attacking my self worth. Stupid mistakes I had made, stupid things I had done in response to the insanity of living with an active addict.

The day before, I'd been on facebook and had saw a message that said something like, "You are a child of God, and that makes you worthy and good. Your past or things you have done cannot take this away from you." That message also played in my head that day and I finally realized when I woke up the next morning that I am a "good" person.

We can't change the past, but we can learn from it and make better choices in our future. And you are on your way to a bright future. Keep pressing on! You can do it.
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Old 05-14-2010, 11:04 PM
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Been there to some extent. I had to wait 7 years to make sure I was clear of HIV due to actions of my addict mother (that was the old days when the tests could take that long to show up). Know you are in my thoughts, and I'm glad you posted. I don't feel so alone for going through that experience tonight.
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Old 05-15-2010, 03:18 AM
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Aaww Bean...

I went thru this. I had to go to my OBGYN and actually verbalize what had been going on and I had to be tested just like you were. And it was honestly one of the lowest points. THe only lower point, I think, was when I went to my attorney to file for divorce and I had to verbalize the situation again. There is something about sitting there, having to explain the whole sordid mess to someone who isn't a friend that really makes you SEE what we put up with. I remember feeling so low. So down on myelf.

It kind of reminds of me of the frog in boiling water analogy. (You know...if you put a frog in boiling water he'll jump out but if you gradually increase the heat, he won't...he'll grow accustomed to the heat and just stay put).

I think that's what happens to us.

I absolutely DID NOT have the tools I needed to understand and deal with my exah's addiction. The only tools I had at my disposal were the coping devices I learned from growing up with an alcoholic father (denial, avoidance...). Another tool I had was that I was raised to believe that divorce is never an option. With these tools, I stayed much longer than I should have...

You know...you did the best you could at the time with the tools you had. But now you have new tools...ones that will actually work. Things will get better. It won't always be this painful. We have to forgive the addict if we're ever going to find peace. We also have to forgive ourselves for the mistakes we made.
:ghug3
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Old 05-15-2010, 03:41 AM
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(((Beantowngirl))) - I remember when I first began my codie recovery, way back when, and was reading the Melodie Beatitie books (among others) and kept reading "just feel your feelings and they'll pass", I HAD no idea how to do that! I'm an RA, but I was an even WORSE codie and I'd always dealt with feelings by focusing on someone else's "stuff".

A little over 3 years into my dual recovery program (addiction and codependency) and there are STILL times when I have feelings that I just don't know/want to deal with and my subconscious will find the smallest thin to forcus on. Being quiet, just letting the feelings come and reaching out for support when I need it (like coming to SR or contacting my f2f friendsk many of whom are here on SR) took much effort, at first. However, I've learned that the feelings didn't kill me; they DID pass, and the biggest thing is....I grew stronger from the experience.

I know this iss hard..especially when it's the total opposite of what you've been doing most of your life.

Hugs and prayers!

Amy
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Old 05-15-2010, 08:14 AM
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I just wanted to say that you're not alone.

I have off days too emotionally.

I think that owning our mistakes has a cleansing affect.

We get clean in the now. My past will always be messy.

We can then make better choices now.

We can cease to be in denial.

When I read your post, I thought of this song:

YouTube - Mess of Me (Switchfoot) Lyrics

I know that I made a mess of me.

(((((hugs)))))
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Old 05-15-2010, 01:49 PM
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sometimes I feel like I have made such a mess of me too. I'm so determined to continue to move forward and build up my time of not messing up so. Wow! Taking the step to go and get tested is a big one - and such a good way to start.

Once I got tested it helped me to make better and stronger decisions due to not wanting to be back in that place. That is the good that can come from it. Plus the relief of just knowing.

All of my life I had tried so hard to be good, kind, deligent, and nice. Once I accepted that I was not as nice and capable as I once pretended to be a huge weight was lifted off of my shoulders. All of a sudden, it felt "ok" to just be human.

My shame about the mess I've made of my life can sometimes cause me to isolate and withdraw. As time goes on and I've made better choices regarding self care some of my shame has disappeared. It really helped me to be a part of Naranon because that is where I finally became comfortable talking about some of the things in my life....because I heard others that had the same stories.

It's not easy to do what you are doing but it sure makes sense to suffer a little bit of short term pain in order to have long term gain.
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Old 05-16-2010, 04:52 PM
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I have been feeling okay over the weekend, though I had dreams about my ex both last night AND the night before. The first night I dreamed that I was in the hospital for some unknown reason and he was there being really sweet and kind to me, and then another of my ex-boyfriend's showed up and was making me nervous and he chased him off. Last night I dreamed he was was using and shoving it in my face, doing it right in front of me and being really mean and confrontational about it, and he was also with another girl and being really showy about it to try to make me jealous. It was disturbing, and I woke up feeling sick.

And I am starting to feel like I miss him, which was not the case before. I don't really know what to do about that but I guess I need to get those thoughts and feelings out because I realized I was unconsciously making sneaky plans to try to see him. My ex and I are from the same town, a small town in Maine, we both live in Boston now though. Anyway, his 20 year class reunion is coming up and I stumbled across the group page on facebook that is planning it. So I just happened to see what weekend it is happening and suddenly I thought what a great idea it would be to go home for the weekend that very same weekend, and well, if I just happened to bump into him it would be such a weird coincidence....hmmmm.

I really don't know what the heck I'm thinking, and why I'm trying to manipulate things that way. I really should not be trying to see him, especially in the 'whoops, what a coincidence, fancy seeing you here' kind of way.

Also, Friday night I was coming back from a friend's birthday party and I drove by his building when I was coming home. Not even sure why, his apartment is on the back side so it's not like I can even tell anything by driving by. It wasn't out of my way, but it's also not the way I would usually go home from my friend's house. Got to that intersection and instead of turning right I went straight, same amount of time and distance to get home but I don't normally drive that way because it's more traffic.

So what the heck am I doing??? Starting to fixate on him a little, I guess. I need to refocus on taking care of myself but it's so hard sometimes. My inclination is to look externally instead of internally. Other people's messy lives are more interesting than my own messy life.

I did do something good for myself today, I went kayaking with my dog for a few hours. It was nice to get out on the water and it was the perfect weather for it. Here's a pic (hope this works):

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Old 05-18-2010, 08:42 PM
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I skipped my class and got my butt to a Naranon meeting tonight and so I am feeling better and a little more centered.

It's scary to me that I was making secret plans to try to manipulate things, plans that I wasn't letting myself acknowledge or admit to myself. It shows me that it really is like being addicted, just to a person instead of a drug. Reminds me of how my ex would describe how he'd realize only after a relapse that he had been planning it for awhile, just wasn't letting himself see it.
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Old 05-18-2010, 09:10 PM
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Your furbaby is a sweetie pie!

Glad you got out and played in the sun... glad you found a meeting.... good to be centered.... especially if you're in a kayak
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Old 05-19-2010, 09:47 AM
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Called my doctor's office and got my test results today, everything was a negative...phew!
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Old 05-19-2010, 09:50 AM
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Beantowngirl, I'm so glad the news was good. Keep us posted!
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Old 05-21-2010, 07:02 AM
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I had to be tested a few years back because of a guy I once dated. He was not an addict, but he was HIV positive (he did not know when we were together). Luckily everything turned out ok, but just having to tell someone that in this day and age I had unprotected sex made me feel like such an moron. I live about 20 minutes from Boston, and vacation in Maine every summer! I will think of you the next time I am sitting on the beach! lol You are doing the right thing taking care of yourself, you are a lot stronger than you give yourself credit for.
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Old 05-21-2010, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Beantowngirl View Post
I skipped my class and got my butt to a Naranon meeting tonight and so I am feeling better and a little more centered.

It's scary to me that I was making secret plans to try to manipulate things, plans that I wasn't letting myself acknowledge or admit to myself. It shows me that it really is like being addicted, just to a person instead of a drug. Reminds me of how my ex would describe how he'd realize only after a relapse that he had been planning it for awhile, just wasn't letting himself see it.
Hi Beantowngirl. As I write this I'm sitting in my RV at Nahant Beach, on the Northshore of Boston. Totally lovely day.

While codependency is certainly a strategy to avoid our own inner demons in favor of being externally oriented, I think that relating to the notion of being "addicted to an addict" is a mistake. More often than not, I've found that codependency fits nicely into a description of adrenaline addiction: the rescuing behavior, the life on the edge of crisis management, the "high" of tilting at windmills, and the "low" of failing to make a difference. Adrenaline is the drug of choice not only of codependents, but of many in the "caring" professions, such as nurses and therapists; also those whose occupations require dealing with crisis....like first responders, police, firefighters, etc. Codeps seem naturally drawn to such professions. Adrenaline is unbelievably powerful...such that it can enable a 90 pound woman to actually lift a car off her child trapped beneath it. It is the fight or flight drug, and it is much more addictive than nearly any other drug imaginable. It is also more damaging, since it is so powerful: it actually causes much of the same physical destruction as alcoholism, and codependent spouses regularly die before their alcoholic husbands or wives....often from cardiac distress and strokes, associated with the stress of living via crisis management.

I've presented this notion to many who identify themselves as codependents, and it usually resonates. My experience is that the solution has to do with those "loaded feelings" (OMG...he's late..better check the hospitals, jails, etc)....which trigger the adrenaline rush. (anger is a primary "loaded feeling" that is a brilliant cover up for the hurt and self hatred experienced by most codeps....it tends to wipe out all the other feelings.) So, being mindful of these loaded feelings can be the first step towards managing them, and frankly, a good course on anger management is often very helpful for those suffering from codependency.

And lest I forget.....CONGRATULATIONS! I'm so happy that you got the opportunity to avoid some awful consequences, and to chalk it up to experience. You are truly blessed. And courageous, too!! :ghug3

blessings
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