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One Year and Under Club Part 47

Old 08-12-2015, 04:55 PM
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Congrats Fradley

D
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Old 08-12-2015, 05:02 PM
  # 362 (permalink)  
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Hi Undies,

What inspiring posts!

Fradley - I beg you please don't apologize for writing about yourself! Keep writing! I know I find it helpful to hear other people's experiences, growth, and struggles. Also, I have found that posting about myself without self consciousness has been an important mode of healing. I was/am one of those codependent people who help others but not myself. When I got sober I learned to put the effort that I used to reserve for others into solving my own problems. I've only been sober 17 months, but I've learned a lot by shining the light to my own issues.

I think the conversation about creativity is interesting. I'm not a musician, nor do I have any artistic pursuits, but I have a somewhat creative process and can relate to your experiences.

Amp and KeyofC - I understand exactly what you mean about dropping out of your music scenes. I dropped out of my social scene because everything reminded me of drinking, or that I couldn't drink. I've been able to reemerge into my social life as I grow more stable on my sober footing. There's no timeline - it's different for everyone. For me it happened gradually, beginning around the 8 or 9 month mark. You'll know when you're ready to reemerge into your music worlds, and by then you'll have developed confidence to back away if it's not right. Paradoxically, having a network of sober people makes me more comfortable in settings where I used to drink.

D122y - Welcome! I have found a lot of hope and healing in the AA program.

BoozeFree - How are you doing??

The discussion about self esteem struck me. In recovery, I've been working on being the person I want to be. I've practiced being grateful for the here and now in recovery, and, slowly, in doing all of that, I've become grateful for not only that but also who I am here, now.

For years I've forward tripped to how great life will be when (fill in the blank). Funny thing is as I reached those goals, they were replaced by bigger and better ones. Today I was taking a walk at work. I was truly immersed in how pretty the flowers were, how blue the sky was, how warm the sun felt. My head wasn't spinning, my mind not strategizing, my inner critic not critiquing. Recovery's gift is to savor the moment.
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:43 PM
  # 363 (permalink)  
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I messed up yesterday and drank.
Another day 1 today. Felt so sick and nauseas all day it was not fun at all. Beating myself up over my last relapse led to yesterday even tho drinking doesn't fix anything.
Really trying to put together a solid plan so I don't have to go thru all of this again. I think learning how to talk about how I'm feeling would help a lot. I struggle to reach out to friends when feeling bummed or upset. I've always had trouble with that which is probably what led to my drinking to begin with as a way to try and numb myself.
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Old 08-12-2015, 10:56 PM
  # 364 (permalink)  
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Sorry you decided to take that first drink yesterday, BoozeFree.

Remember these forums are here 24/7--when that craving hits, try to push the pause button long enough to come and ask for help first. Build up that accountability to yourself and to others. We're here for you.

Don't beat yourself up anymore about the previous relapse or this one. What's done is done and living in your regrets won't make today any better. Keep working on that plan--you have a desire to stop drinking, that's a good start. You can get this. Heck, if I can stop drinking, anyone can.

You're in my thoughts and prayers today, BoozeFree...
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Old 08-13-2015, 01:16 AM
  # 365 (permalink)  
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Sorry to hear about your troubles BF. Promise yourself you'll reach out before next time before you take that drink.

Self esteem is an interesting issue. I think it's huge for most of us here. Spending years sneaking around and hiding stuff can turn you into someone who you really don't like very much. It is a huge relief to recover the person who, if you are anything like me, although he is flawed and messed up in some ways, is actually a pretty good guy:

"So there you were!!!! Nice to see you after all this time!!!!"

Like a reunion with yourself. Welcome back to life.

Have a great day all!
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Old 08-13-2015, 01:32 AM
  # 366 (permalink)  
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BeFree, I know how annoyed at yourself you will be for this last slip, but don't give in to it. I feel you have recognised something big in your inability to share with others. Whether it is a lack of trust, fear of betrayal or feeling that no one cares enough to want to hear, you need to confront what is stopping you trusting your thoughts and fears to another. I believe it would help you immensely to find a sponsor, and to be able to open up to them. Be strong sweetie, you will get there.

Getting there, Fradley, I had the same thoughts as you did 'Is this it?' Yeah, I obviously managed to stop drinking, cleared all the chemicals out of my system, broke 35 years of bad habits, slapped myself on the back and...... And...... There is no sense of completion in recovery Fradley. This gave me some blue moments for a while.
We are so focussed on recovery in the early days, we make it our priority, we learn to manage life sober. But there comes a point where we realise that this hill we climbed has become an endless path we don't get to say 'Hurrah! We did it!' Because we haven't.....yet. And until our last breath, we can't. Of course by then, we don't actually have the breath left!!
So we reach a point in sobriety where sobriety in and of itself just becomes as much of our way of life as eating and sleeping. We still have the AV moments, though fewer and further between. We are still able to claim our milestones ( 29 months tomorrow Yay!!) but there is no conclusion. I think Fradley, this is what you were feeling? Fact is we have to get past the lack of ending where we can brush our hands and say, 'phew, job well done' . We just have to keep moving forward.
There may not be an end result as such, but there are monumental wonderous changes in becoming sober. You are seeing the results of that in your increased talent. I also did in my own. When I wrote, prepared and published my first book, I could bring it up online and say ' that was all me, and all because ( and only because )I am sober. That gave me an undeniable sense of achievement.
And knowing that I am living a better life as a better person, a better wife, mother grandmother, a better worker gives me a sense of achievement. So no, reaching our personal summit, waving the flag yelling 'top of the world ma' isn't an end. It is a beginning.
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Old 08-13-2015, 02:22 AM
  # 367 (permalink)  
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I'm sorry, BFree.

It is vital that you express your frustrations and hurts in a safe environment. It is fatal to bottle them up and let them fester with no outlet.

The way I deal with it is to write it all down and unload it on the kind folks at SR (mainly in my class thread now--I definitely have done it on Undies, too). Many times just the act of sharing my feelings with others reduces a lot of the pressure and pain. Share exactly how and why you're hurting. Analyze yourself and then lay it out on here. It feels good to get it out with specifics.

And the kind responses when you are hurting plus the practical advice can really help in bringing you to a solution.

One trap you shouldn't fall for is "I can't post--I should be beyond this by now!" That's a lie. Nobody's ever beyond it.

Maybe you need face-to-face support, too.
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Old 08-13-2015, 02:42 AM
  # 368 (permalink)  
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Morning all.

Day 29 here today. I can't get over how well I'm sleeping. My Dr says it is probably down to the Mirtazapine she put me on, but I attribute it to a significant shift in my mindframe in addition. Whatever it is, i'm not complaining. I am used to waking up 4 to 5 times a night and now I sleep through and wake up feeling refreshed.

I have been getting more and more frustrated as this week has gone on, I think its down to the fact that my sick note runs out (even though it will be extended no problem). I guess i'm really worried about having to go back to my job, which I hate. Also, everyone knows about my problems now as someone I confided in (Mental health - I didn't disclose the alcohol) has gotten careless with her mouth. I'm not ready to go back to work yet anyway I feel, but this is putting me into panic just thinking about it, and bringing uncopeable amounts of anxiety with it

I have looked into teaching as I wrote the other day, and I have also had a chat with the head of History at a local school whoo I know already, and he is going to see what he can do to get me a place. I'd have to study for a year obviously, but I can 'top up' my previous student loan. At least I would be working with something I love every day. I am absolutely mad about my history, and with my job now, I just don't get chance to do my research anymore. It would be nice to have the chance to inspire a few kids like one of my history teachers did with me.

What I am trying to remind myself constantly is that I have options and I am young enough at mid 20's to still do anything I want. Its probably not worth worrying about my current job if it makes me so miserable anyway. I did suggest to my current employer that I would CONSIDER a staggered return to work of no more than 3 days a week for a month or so, until Iam back on my feet. Occ health then passed this on so the ball is in their court. They are supposed to contact me but haven't, so I'm more than happy to continue handing my sick note in. I don't know why I get so stressed out about it, fortunately I don't have any kids / mortgage or anything. I guess its fear that I might make the wrong choice.

Anyway - planning on some exercise today to get the endorphins going and take my mind off work. Looks like good weather for a bike ride here in the UK.

BeFree - Sorry to hear about your slip. Being accountable here and getting everything off my chest certainly helps me, no matter how trivial. Look after yourself for now and get back on the sobercoaster

Take care all,
B
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Old 08-13-2015, 02:45 AM
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I feel for you, B^3. It's horrifying when people blab.
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Old 08-13-2015, 08:41 AM
  # 370 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by tootsl1 View Post
So we reach a point in sobriety where sobriety in and of itself just becomes as much of our way of life as eating and sleeping. We still have the AV moments, though fewer and further between. We are still able to claim our milestones ( 29 months tomorrow Yay!!) but there is no conclusion. I think Fradley, this is what you were feeling? Fact is we have to get past the lack of ending where we can brush our hands and say, 'phew, job well done' . We just have to keep moving forward.
There may not be an end result as such, but there are monumental wonderous changes in becoming sober.

(...)

And knowing that I am living a better life as a better person, a better wife, mother grandmother, a better worker gives me a sense of achievement. So no, reaching our personal summit, waving the flag yelling 'top of the world ma' isn't an end. It is a beginning.
Just wanted to say I absolutely love what you wrote here, toots. I'm realizing more and more every day that recovery is a journey, not a destination.

I have no regrets about the sixteen year detour I took with my drinking because I'm so happy with the way my life is evolving today.

Wishing everyone a safe and sober Thursday. Thanks to each and every one of you for keeping me sober one more day.
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Old 08-13-2015, 03:14 PM
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BeFree, I know how miserable it feels to slip - I lost count of how many times. For me, SR alone wasn't enough and I needed a good deal of f2f support. The IOP kept me truly honest since we were drug and alcohol tested at every meeting. If you need it, I hope you'll consider adding more support.

Toots, that was a "Toots' super-duper" post!

Gilmer, somehow I never see it as you "unloading" - you share what's going on.

BBB, glad to hear you are dipping your toes into other work possibilities. Sorry your confidence was betrayed - I tend to assume that if I tell anyone something, there's no way to be sure it won't get out.

Hi to all Undies!
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Old 08-13-2015, 06:13 PM
  # 372 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by BoozeFree View Post
I messed up yesterday and drank.
Another day 1 today.
Sorry Booze free. All I can offer is what I did to get to day 95. Eat when I craved, drank tons off water. Now the cravings are like little iches, they fade without being scratched.

My issue is still driving anxiety, but today for the first time in 3 months the driving anxiety faded. I felt it happening. I thank God for this day. It has been horrific until today.

These are horrible, life altering, and life ending issues we are all dealing with here.

We are all in this together as a family of alcoholics. I am proud of each and every old and new sober day.

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Old 08-13-2015, 06:19 PM
  # 373 (permalink)  
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D122y -- that's awesome the anxiety faded while driving today. Small steps. If you can do it once, you can do it again the next time.
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Old 08-13-2015, 07:05 PM
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Amp - I agree, sobriety sure has given me a chance to get reacquainted with me!

Dizzy - Great job with the driving! It's amazing how anxiety cool without adding alcohol to the fire.

BBB - In time the answers about how to proceed with work. The best advice I can offer is what people told me - stay sober. Keep at it and the right thing to do will become clearer.

BF - It seems like you drink when people aren't around? I wonder if exploring that can lead to some clarity for you around your relapses? I try to only speak from my experience in recovery. I've come to see just how much of a trigger isolation and loneliness are for me. Ironically, in active addiction, many of my behaviors hindered intimacy and interdependence with other people. I wasn't nurturing the right relationships.

In AA I hear lots of different people discussing how the program improved their relationships with people. Whatever toxic patterns they were prone to, be it secretiveness or lying or smothering or shutting people out, boastfulness, you name it, they've learned to overcome it and live really good lives in the program.

For me personally, I am naturally pretty comfortable socially, yet I struggled with feeling like I fit in at AA meetings. It took me going time and again, trying different meetings, and signing up for service commitments to get settled there. I will tie into Toots' suggestion to seek a sponsor. Doing so has been so beneficial to me. It's great to have someone to unload to, with problems big or small. It keeps the small problems from growing and festering and becoming bigger ones. To tie into what Gilmer, who always has good advice, said, a sponsor can guide you into digging deeper into the issues that drive your addiction. I encourage you to listen to people who are successfully avoiding alcohol.

I'm not saying AA is the right way. It's certainly not the only way. But AA is accessible to anyone and works for a lot of people, including me. It provides valuable face to face support, which I personally need.

Toots - Great post. I don't know if I was blue because I didn't know how to live sober, or if it was a physical effect of alcoholism, or if it was something that I had for a long time and used alcohol to deal with it, but I agree with you that I've felt more engaged in life as I've developed tools to live well.

Last weekend I had an unintentional engagement with poison ivy. I'm so allergic to it! I was hoping that the rash would remain contained but today the rash popped head to toe, so tomorrow I will start steroids.

Grab all the great stuff this sober life offers, Undies!

(But don't grab the poison plants!!!!)
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Old 08-13-2015, 07:50 PM
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Thanks for the heartfelt post as always, Gleefan. Hope you recover quickly from your poison ivy encounter.
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Old 08-13-2015, 08:04 PM
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Thanks Casey. Every summer I wait til the rash overwhelms me before I seek steroids. This year I didn't see the point in waiting for it to get bad before I got relief. Another example of improved thinking through sobriety.
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Old 08-14-2015, 01:51 AM
  # 377 (permalink)  
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Ouch! Feel better soon Glee, I don't think we have poison ivy here, but I hear about it often across the pond.

Di22y, I trained as a driving instructor and specialised in helping pupils overcome nerves. I found that anxiety was a vicious circle, the more anxious a driver was, the more they avoided certain scenarios ( heavy traffic, slip roads, turning right -or left in the U.S. Etc) and the more they avoided the worse their anxiety until driving became a perpetual nightmare. I would specifically take them into their worst situations but at quieter times, over and over until it became easier and more natural. Well done on getting out there and pushing your driving boundaries.

BeFree, do what you need to to get out of this current binge cycle, it is eating away at your self belief and confidence. You have almost a year under your belt, you can and will get there and beyond. There is some good advice from others here and plenty of support. X

3Bs, hope you got the bike ride in yesterday, today you would need a canoe!

Hope you all have strong sober plans for the weekend Undies.
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Old 08-14-2015, 05:05 AM
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Good morning, Undies!

Hearing about poison ivy is enough to get me scratching and it has been around 55 years since the last awful one! That was not long before steroids were available.

Gotta run - have a relaxing sober day
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Old 08-14-2015, 04:53 PM
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Checking in at 1.45 am after a very long Friday.

Toots I just wanted to say a huge thank you to you for your post. It was like having a gust of wind on my back whilst quietly trudging up a hill.

Everything you said makes sense, and removed a bunch of anxieties in one fell swoop.

Day 70 for me today - we have a bunch of friends visiting later today for a house warming. I have to go and buy wine glasses, wine and beers for the guys. I hadn't really planned for this. Pretty certain I will be fine, but will be on my guard.

There will also be nine children here under the age of five.I guess I can earn double brownie points by entertaining them while everyone else drinks.

Crikey - what a thought- definitely a reason to go to bed right now.

Good night and best wishes to all.

Fradley
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Old 08-14-2015, 07:38 PM
  # 380 (permalink)  
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Thanks everyone for the support. I am struggling between wanting to be sober more than wanting to drink. I am on day 3 though and trying to just get thru each day at the moment
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