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One Year and Under Club Part 50

Old 12-27-2015, 10:23 PM
  # 261 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by stargazer016 View Post
Been thirty some years since I wasn't drinking on Christmas.

I had to laugh. My mother was drinking a small glass of wine, which is truly the second time I have ever seen her drink. She was so proud of me at Thanksgiving for quitting drinking, yet she, of all people, offered me some wine!

Life can be absurd at times! Glad everyone had a good holiday!

Pretty ironic!
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Old 12-28-2015, 01:15 AM
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Definitely!

Reminds me - my sister believes that we should all be able to control our drinking. She knows I'm an alcoholic but still doesn't get it. She always offers me a drink.
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Old 12-28-2015, 04:50 AM
  # 263 (permalink)  
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Good morning. It's back to work after a nice holiday weekend. Thanks everyone for your posts. I did check in here more than usual and reading everyone's posts have helped me a lot to easily stay sober.

Hmmm...sounds like you were being tested Saskia.

Have a good day everyone.
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Old 12-28-2015, 05:01 AM
  # 264 (permalink)  
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Hey (((guys)))
I've been a bit quiet. Just caught up on the thread. Congrstulations to the milestones! Amazing!
Although I'm aware of what's needing my attention to be changed, I'm struggling doing it. Yes, I did drink to deal with the times my husband was gone, doing things without me. I also have major trust issues. I am seeing that the things I find I don't like about myself I am projecting them on my husband like he is doing things I did. I was the one that couldn't be trusted. I had searched for things outside of my marriage. I have lied. I have caused him to feel insecure, doubtful, fearful. Now I feel all these things. Before I started drinking heavily, I was at home with my two babies, while he was out partying it up with his single buddies, doing god knows what. He would come in very late, drunk, usually had been in a fight with someone so that would cause us to fight. I remember the moment I thought I would show him and I would drink and get drunk too. I remember the ultimatum I gave him to either party or be a family man. I remember nothing changing and me drinking, in an attempt to stuff all the feelings. I'm guessing the overwhelming feelings I have now, are of that 23 year old girl that I never dealt with. Now I don't have my booze. Now I don't have my music. Now I don't have the affair to turn to. (Yes, I did that too..so ashamed of that fact.) All of these feelings frozen in time? Seriously? Most days I feel crazy, on the verge of a break down, over the top feelings of just uneasiness. I've got to get past this crap. It is absolutely killing me. Again, I'm not drinking and in no danger of doing so, but I didn't think, in a million years, all this would be waiting for me to handle. No wonder I drank!
Hope everyone had wonderful holidays. I did okay with the drinking part, all of this mess is what keeps me tore up and absulotely nutty acting.
((Hug))
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Old 12-28-2015, 05:19 AM
  # 265 (permalink)  
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(((Key))), it sounds to me like one of your tasks is to learn to forgive yourself!

Yes, I agree that drinking freezes our development and adds more issues. Untangling it all and restarting growth takes a lot of time. Growth doesn't stop after a certain age - it's a lifelong process. Different aspects of ourselves grow at different rates and in some ways common to all and in others unique to each of us.
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Old 12-28-2015, 07:57 AM
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Hi Undies

WWS - Great job seeking extra support for your resolve by visiting SR a little more over the long holiday weekend. Seeking support by going to a meeting, calling my sponsor, or talking to another alcoholic always helps me. I hope your first day back to work is a pleasant one.

Stargazer - Good job saying no to the glass of wine. I find that some people "get" it and others don't.

Saskia - I really appreciate hearing about your journey. I'm finally learning that it's not necessary for people to understand or agree with me. I can't begin to tell you how much time that adds back to my day (haha). Seriously, think about the stress and hand wringing, coercion, and conversations with others strategizing how to make someone else understand me, that can take up so much of women's time, that are avoided by giving that up.

Carlos - Staying in the here and now is a wonderful goal, and I like your catchphrase "between the claps" for living in the moment.

KeyofC - I really related when you said you didn't expect these issues with your husband to be waiting for you when you got sober. When I stopped drinking I thought I was going to lose 20 lbs and keep moving forward as always, but nope, what awaited me instead was a diagnosis with autoimmune arthritis, work on boundaries with a needy user friend, and tons of issues with my husband - all of which related back to unresolved issues in childhood. It sure wasn't what I signed up for when I decided to stop drinking! It felt overwhelming. I didn't know where to start. The 12 steps provided me a framework and guidance for these heavy issues. As I progress along this recovery path, the weight of the world I carry my shoulders gets chiseled away chip by chip.
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Old 12-28-2015, 09:01 AM
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Hey Undies,

For those of you on the edge of your seats about my dilemma from yesterday...no golf. I chose a family visit that included lasagna that was decadent and was gifted one of my aunts almost famous nut rolls. Good decision. If only the Steelers had won the game that we watched together.

I shut off my tv last week in moving prep and I am forced with another dilemma for today. While I am not pinned to football on the boob tube, I do watch and/or attend about 75% of the Pgh Steeler and my alma matter/Pitt games. Pitt is in a bowl game at 2:30 this afternoon vs Navy on ESPN. Do I go to the bar next to my body-pump class that starts at 5:30, or not?

Fact is, I hate bars and would not even consider this option were it not for class. Since many close friends are college peeps, it would be easy to weasel an in-home invite...but that would mean I would miss class. I am down to but a handful of classes to attend prior to leaving and blowing it off would throw a major wrench into a recovery first based lifestyle....mind, BODY and spirit. Anyway, I'm sure the answer will come to me soon.

Key, I read your post and I couldn't help think of "The Promises". I know that they are AA based, but, I believe that they "could" be expanded to include any recovery based program.

These promises were offered to me at no charge, provided I was willing to work the steps. I can honestly say that I have been granted little bits of all of them over the past almost 31 months. They are:

If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that a Higher Power is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

None of this happened overnight, but, my recovery first attitude has led to a pretty amazing happiness - in spite of some major wreckage that in many ways align with the issues you described.

If I were facing a difficult day, as I still often do, I would be sure to write a gratitude list, accept that I can only tackle what I can TODAY, be sure to include music as part of my day, avoid isolation through interaction and try to help another suffering from our disease.

Somehow, keeping a focus in just for today seems to work magic for me.

Let's enjoy another sober day, all!

Carlos
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Old 12-28-2015, 11:01 AM
  # 268 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by IWLSAST View Post
If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that a Higher Power is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

None of this happened overnight, but, my recovery first attitude has led to a pretty amazing happiness - in spite of some major wreckage that in many ways align with the issues you described. If I were facing a difficult day, as I still often do, I would be sure to write a gratitude list, accept that I can only tackle what I can TODAY, be sure to include music as part of my day, avoid isolation through interaction and try to help another suffering from our disease. Somehow, keeping a focus in just for today seems to work magic for me.


When I first heard The Promises, they sounded silly to me. I didn't see myself as needing fixing! It was the people around me who did. Haha. It has taken months of diligently facing my own side of the street, just for that day, to see them beginning to emerge in my life.

Carlos - I liked how you referenced the tug between doing what is right (the gym) and what you want (watch football with your buddy). It reminds me of how I try to frame my day. In the car on the way to work I relax, drink coffee, mentally compile my gratitude list, then figure out how I'm going to bring my recovery principles into my day's plans. On the weekend I sip coffee in the living room. It can be as simple as "today I will try to be patient when working with someone who's approach to work annoys/disgusts me." If I need a jump start I read the Hazelden thought of the day.

Just because it's simple doesn't mean it's easy - at least not for this alcoholic!! I've failed at being truly sparkling with a few of my colleagues. I keep choosing to say nothing when I don't know what to say. I haven't crossed the line into telling them how to be more like me - lol - at least not yet!!

I have been rocking and rolling through some house cleaning over the past few days off. I've got a couple more things to do today then I'm taking the kids to see Star Wars.

I'm not a New Years resolution person, but this year some of my major housekeeping resolutions are aligning with the start of the new year. My husband and I have decided to do some projects on our house then decide whether to Love It or List It (one of my favorite TV shows!) Due to time constraints and budgeting, I suspect it'll take a couple years to go through the punch list and make that decision. I'm in no rush because this house is affordable and in a great location. Being grateful for what I have, being in no rush and being able to delay gratification for 2 years is brought to me only by recovery.

Have a great day!
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Old 12-28-2015, 01:39 PM
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Carlos, in reading your post, I think you answered your own question.
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Old 12-28-2015, 05:02 PM
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Thank you everyone ((hug))
You always offer up some good food for thought. I'm never giving up. Get overwhelmed a lot but that's to be expected. Y'all are amazing
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Old 12-28-2015, 09:07 PM
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Good evening all! I just heard that the 60-90 day stretch is a really tough time on new sobriety. Did many of you find that to be the case? How did you handle it? I don't want to blow it after coming this far!!
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Old 12-29-2015, 02:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Keepnitreal View Post
Good evening all! I just heard that the 60-90 day stretch is a really tough time on new sobriety. Did many of you find that to be the case? How did you handle it? I don't want to blow it after coming this far!!
I had several very strong urges to drink in my third month, ones that were huge challenges to overcome. I think my AV realized after two months that it was fighting a losing battle and came at me with all it had in a last ditch effort to get me drinking again.

Be hyper aware of HALT. The AV waits until a couple of these factors are in play before launching a craving. Be sure to be close to SR to get support. It seemed to me that approaching a milestone, like 60 days or 90 days, always stirred up my AV. Knowing ahead of time will be a huge help.

For me, my AV really quieted down after 90 days. That's not to say that there will not be challenges coming. Between three months and six months, I slowly began to think of myself as a person who does not drink. During the first 90 days, I was simply an alcoholic who was trying to abstain from booze. It is a huge mind shift and I am still working on it at eight months sober.

Hope this helps a little. You seem to be doing very well! Keep it up!
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Old 12-29-2015, 04:32 AM
  # 273 (permalink)  
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KIR - Get all the support you can! Support is there for the taking of you seek it. I kept the lines of communication open with other alcoholics. I posted on SR, went to AA meetings, tried to talk to people before and after the meeting, and offered to set up for meetings/make coffee to make sure I got there.

For years I avoided my own issues by being a compassionate listener and helper. This time around, I resisted the temptation to focus on others, got really vulnerable and shared the issues I was facing. That was key.

Then I did something else I'd never done: I listened to others' opinions. Some folks' advice didn't make sense to me, but by keeping an open mind to what others said, I learned about principles and ideas that I'd never been exposed to before. Practicing those principles of gratitude, vulnerability, humility, honesty, and acceptance have have changed my life for the better.

Take what works, then leave the rest of what I have to say!! I hope this helps.
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Old 12-29-2015, 05:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Keepnitreal View Post
Good evening all! I just heard that the 60-90 day stretch is a really tough time on new sobriety. Did many of you find that to be the case? How did you handle it? I don't want to blow it after coming this far!!
I definitely did blow it earlier this year.

I did find my last recovery effort earlier this year to be still difficult around the 60 to 90 day mark and did a monster craving at about the 100 day mark.

This time I have found things to be much easier, now not completely without challenges, but easier. It's hard to say what the difference was, but I did take a lower key, one day at a time approach this time approach this time. I also started reading more about addiction and alcohol and learned some better strategies to deal with cravings. Knowledge is definitely power here. I have been able to get my work schedule changed to reduce the amount of work related stress and this has helped a lot. I'm working on reducing my overall stress level and just letting small things go.

In my last effort I did have the big goal and a workable strategy but ultimately it did fail. I think I felt that just getting sober would be the end all and everything else would be fine. But alcohol numbed me and provided an escape for a lot of life's problems that come to the forefront with sobriety. Right now, although I have a long way to go, I am feeling more calmness and a sense of serenity I haven't felt in a long time.

Glad you are here Key. This place is much better when you are here and posting!

Have a good day everyone.
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Old 12-29-2015, 06:42 AM
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WWS, love your post - so well said!

KIR, I didn't keep track of when the cravings were really bad but can say that talking to others as we do here helped a lot. As much as possible I tried to stay out of situations where it would be easy for me to buy a bottle.
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Old 12-29-2015, 03:26 PM
  # 276 (permalink)  
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Thank you Star, Glee, Way, and Saskia-
Being forwarned is forarmed. I appreciate your feedback and help.
The next several days I will probably stick very close by. I told my November class that in October I decided to get sober and had 11 days, but then hubby went out of town. I went from feeling strong to buying several bottles of wine at the market because I could have a drunkfest and nobody would know! After 3 days I decided enough was enough and I called my sponsor and told her what I did. The worst part was that I didn't even reach out. I decided within minutes that I wasn't going to lose this opportunity to party without the "wine police" home.
Well, hubby just left town for 3-4 days so here I am. I went to the market and bought some vegetables and healthy food, wasn't thinking about wine at that point. However, I can say I've been thinking about it over the past hour or two and feel that I am vulnerable.....so I thought I would share and ask you all to say a prayer for me!!! I quit for hubby and my son 51 days ago, but now it's for me too! I can do this!!!!!!
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Old 12-29-2015, 04:31 PM
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KIR, I know that feeling well! Having a brief thought and then acting on the idea and drinking. I did that too many times. There actually is enough time to get myself back on track if I act immediately. I've gotten so accustomed to doing this that I no longer even need to think about it.

It goes something like this: I would really like a drink! Wait a second - what would happen if I did? I know I wouldn't be able to stop there, so I'd end up drinking regularly. Whoa - wait a minute, remember how hard it was to stop drinking? I'd need to do either IOP or inpatient rehab, it would definitely not be fun, etc etc etc. by the time I think it through to the end, the craving and/or thoughts are gone.

In IOP they taught us about the relapse cycle and how to intervene at any point. What I described above is the first stage when we are thinking about it. Thinking it through is the recommended technique.

If it goes beyond that to real cravings, the recommendation is to talk to friend(s). Same for an actual slip. Each stage needs stronger intervention so the best is to stop it in the very early stage.

Now that I've done it a number of times, thinking it through is essentially automatic and now I realize that I do have time to do that and it works for me.
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Old 12-29-2015, 08:44 PM
  # 278 (permalink)  
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KIR - I was taken aback at how powerful my cravings were when I couldn't stop drinking, and how flat and listless I felt when I finally stopped. Those feelings are strong and it helped me to map my sober plans for unstructured time.

I also think it's important to reach out for the help that others so kindly offer, as well as be there for someone else who is struggling. I need to be sober to offer to help others stay sober, other alcoholics need to be sober to help me, and we need to accept each other's support.
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Old 12-29-2015, 09:19 PM
  # 279 (permalink)  
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Night one in the bag. Off to bed. When I get through this I am going to be so pleased! Thanks for your help!!!!!
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Old 12-30-2015, 12:03 AM
  # 280 (permalink)  
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KIR. The hardest part for me stopping was the number of times I only had myself to be accountable to. My hubby works away Monday to Friday most weeks so my week days had become my best drinking days. If he occasionally had to leave on a Sunday night, I would be celebrating my extra drinking time. When I stopped, I found that the times I had an extra day, my AV would ramp up the way I would get excited in the past. It wasn't easy to work through, but it is worth it. And the more times it happens, the more it becomes natural do to something other than drink. I would come here more often in the early months, especially when I knew I was heading towards a time of greater temptation.

I think between 3 and 6 months our addiction seems to work harder at 'getting us back in its clutches' 3 months of sobriety feels like success to an addict; we have overcome the daily urges, got the physical cravings out of our system and begun to feel stronger about our recovery. So our AV works harder at us, in sneaker more devious ways, telling us that now we are ok, we can start drinking again 'in moderation' yeah. Like that ever works. The only people who drink in moderation are Normies,mor drunks with an iron will sense of self control. And while it is possible to have self control, I was never satisfied with one or two drinks, so I would find that more frustrating than total sobriety.

I went through a grieving process at the very real loss of my constant companion. Like Glee I felt listless and bored and wondered if this was what life without booze was all about. Life doesn't get better when we stop drinking, we just get the opportunity to make it so. What we do with that is up to us.

I believe in all of you, you are here, fighting and winning.
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The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to tootsl1 For This Useful Post:
BoozeFree (12-31-2015), Dee74 (12-30-2015), gleefan (12-30-2015), Keepnitreal (12-30-2015), KeyofC (01-02-2016), Olivia2011 (12-30-2015), Saskia (12-30-2015), waywardson8260 (12-30-2015)

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