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The anxiety finally won.

Old 06-19-2014, 09:53 AM
  # 81 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by alphaomega View Post
I didn't drink yesterday. Haven't yet today.

But I'm weary and forlorn.

And the day is still young.

And my attitude ? Well, let's just say the big old F.U. Is still running the show.

It's like I care SO much I just dont a crap anymore.

Not my finest hour.

Tread lightly. I'm fragile and cracking and pieces are starting to fall off...
Hey my friend...
I know that part of my relapse was well...I was really bloody sick of "recovery"..I was sick to death of looking at my "crap". I was sick of thinking there was something wrong with me 24 freaking 7...and look at all those other daft fools out there merrily going along not living there lives under a self imposed microscope!
Ya..just look at 'em blithely going along buying there cucumbers and red pepper jelly, whistling a happy tune getting ready for their dinner party..

NOT thinking they were total whackjobs trying to sort themselves out in recovery...

I should have bought that "learn Italian" CD I spied on the internet for $10 bucks. Ya just pop in your car stereo on the way to work (I had a 30 minute commute)...and ...viva la bella Roma..or whatever...

I should have done something DIFFERENT. I should have taken up belly dancing or ...skeet shooting..

I should have gotten out of my own head...DIFFERENTLY. I too relapsed on a weekend away..but it was coming...my restless discontent had reared its ugly head long before I hit that lounge on the ocean.
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Old 06-19-2014, 09:55 AM
  # 82 (permalink)  
Its a cold and its a broken hallelujah.
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Bingo.
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Old 06-19-2014, 12:05 PM
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Wow, this is a really great thread. Lots of powerful things have been written here. I enjoyed reading everyone's responses.

AO, I saved a post you wrote a while back (http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...night-lot.html) and I reference it often. It really hit home for me. It gives me a lot of strength. I can relate to almost everything in it.

This hits home for me too. Especially the part about having a glass of wine and feeling better afterward. That's what happened to me on my last relapse too. I got to a point of just wanting to shut everything out, even if it was just for a second. I especially wanted my mind to just shut the heck up. I thought that having a glass of wine, or in my case a bottle of wine, would shut it up. And what do you know? It worked. For a while anyway.

Let's not beat around the bush. Alcohol gives us something. If it didn't then why did we indulge in it for so long? I wrote in my journal after my first drink and I documented the euphoria I felt. But it only lasted so long and then I was back to facing those same problems again. Of course it felt good AO. That's what alcohol does. What did you expect?

Now, how long do you think you'll be able to use this bandaid to make the anxiety go away? How long before it catches up to you? I don't think you want to use this crutch forever. But I think you're tired too. Tired of fighting the alcohol and then on top of everything else you're battling this terrible anxiety. It sounds exhausting. Maybe it's time to let some people help you with this. People that are used to dealing with this stuff.

I agree with what other people on here have said about the anxiety and the alcoholism being two separate things that need to be worked on separately. In my opinion, it'll be an uphill battle trying to stay sober while dealing with this anxiety issue. Think about the long term consequences. Alcohol is just instant gratification. It doesn't ever really fix the problem.

So, it sounds like you've been trying to deal with your anxiety in some healthy ways, but it wasn't working. What do you think about talking to a healthcare professional about your problem? Just talking. Just to see what other options are out there. You mentioned that your sister OD'd on alcohol and medication, but you can easily overdose on xanax while drinking alcohol as well, yet you still take that. I'm just thinking that if you can find some HEALTHY ways to cope with the severe anxiety attacks that you're having then it'll be that much easier to deal with this alcoholism thing. I know that with my own sobriety, relearning coping mechanisms has been extremely important. Over the years I have been leaning on this crutch called alcohol for all of my problems. Of course I don't know how to cope. If I did then I wouldn't need alcohol. But, like I said, it's a short term thing. It's never going to fix the underlying problem.

In a nutshell, I would suggest tackling that anxiety issue. Stay sober while you do it because alcohol won't help. Getting some help from others wouldn't hurt either.

I wish you the best AO, I really love your posts.
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Old 06-19-2014, 12:15 PM
  # 84 (permalink)  
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Lulu alpha received the equivalent of an Oscar on SR with that thread
She made the "The Best of Sober Recovery" section
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Old 06-19-2014, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by ImperfectlyMe View Post
Lulu alpha received the equivalent of an Oscar on SR with that thread
She made the "The Best of Sober Recovery" section
That amazing post...wow...yup, remember it like yesterday.
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Old 06-19-2014, 12:32 PM
  # 86 (permalink)  
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You know, its funny. Looking back at it with a semi clearer head, I wonder, was the anxiety a pass or fail ?

Granted, it ended in my slipping. And that is not anything to be commended.

But...I went to the scariest place in the world (in my little head) and did the scariest thing imaginable in my little head (claustrophobia AND driving in city Crazytown).

I am witnessing my very apparent "All or Nothing" thinking in full force. Ugly head is reared. I don't, nor ever have, allowed myself the opportunity for failures..and the subsequent gifts that most often arise from said mistakes.

Failure is a slippery slope in sobriety. Boy oh boy do I ever know that.

But, my spiritual practice reminds me that pain is a PROFOUND motivator. And the agony I have recently witnessed - both in drinking and my insanely fragile mental health, might it be propelling me into a new chapter in my life ?

I know one thing for sure, I wont find out until I get sober again.

But, damn, that feels just too daunting, too insurmountable at the present moment.

But, if not now, when ?
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Old 06-19-2014, 12:41 PM
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I have been thinking about you a lot, AO. It prompted me to look back at some of my old threads that I had started and you commented thoughtfully on almost every one of them. Thank you so much for that. Thank you for your support of my sobriety. It means the world to me.

Today I had yet another "heart to heart" with my mom. She just got off of a three day bender. She called my sister drunk last night and then seemed surprised to hear my sister's voice. She said my dad had left her. I secretly prayed that he had left her but I knew in my heart that he hadn't. I wanted him to do something drastic, something to wake her up, but maybe that wake-up call will never come for her. We talked about her anxiety, we talked about her getting professional help. Mostly I told her that I love her and that I am here for her. She yessed me to death and then went on to assure me that she doesn't have "as big of a problem" as my sister and I think she does. She thanked me. The conversation left me hollow. I wanted to call "my mom" for comfort. But I don't have one. I have turned into my mother's mother and I feel like a failure because I can't cure what ails her.

AO, you have a leg up because you know that you have a big problem with alcohol. Use that knowledge to help yourself. If not for yourself, than for your children.
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Old 06-19-2014, 12:57 PM
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Hi again AO,
just on a short break from work and thought I'd send you a virtual hug.

It is so hard sometimes isn't it?

Sometimes we just need to get past a few tough days and on to the next thing.

I'm glad you're posting.
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Old 06-19-2014, 01:33 PM
  # 89 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by DoubleDragons View Post

The conversation left me hollow. I wanted to call "my mom" for comfort. But I don't have one. I have turned into my mother's mother and I feel like a failure because I can't cure what ails her.
Wow... that was the story of my life with my mom.
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Old 06-19-2014, 01:42 PM
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Thinking of you AO, and I always love your ultra-sharp posts.

The night before last, I was unexpectedly called up to stage when I was in attendance of a friend's performance. I tried my my very very best to decline her invitation but the people around me started yelling for me to get up there and my friend was imploring me. Basically, I had a panic attack on stage. Afraid to look up, head staring down while playing guitar, legs seriously shaking uncontrollably, it was a horrible few minutes. I'm so glad there was a stool to sit on because of leg shakes and the old heart was racing like a car at the Indy 500. Even though I'm still a bit haunted by what happened, it's over with and I'm stronger from it.

You're going to be stronger from your recent experience, too. I wish you peace and strength.
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Old 06-19-2014, 02:00 PM
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That was me this morning. The whole thing just "lifted" with a glass of wine. Which soon became half a bottle. Which is why I am here.
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Old 06-19-2014, 03:07 PM
  # 92 (permalink)  
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Welcome BooBooka

D
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Old 06-19-2014, 03:09 PM
  # 93 (permalink)  
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But...I went to the scariest place in the world (in my little head) and did the scariest thing imaginable in my little head (claustrophobia AND driving in city Crazytown).
and you did that.
You AV will say it was the wine, but that's not true.

You did that

D
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:20 PM
  # 94 (permalink)  
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******{Hugs}}}} AO.
I understand exactly where you are at. I hope you find the strength to stop.
God I hate/love alcohol.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by alphaomega View Post
I didn't drink yesterday. Haven't yet today.

But I'm weary and forlorn.

And the day is still young.

And my attitude ? Well, let's just say the big old F.U. Is still running the show.

It's like I care SO much I just dont a crap anymore.

Not my finest hour.

Tread lightly. I'm fragile and cracking and pieces are starting to fall off...
Hi Alpha.

I'm sorry to read about your struggles. I haven't replied to your thread thus far, if only because it seems you've been in a shaky state of mind which generally thrives on fear and irrational thinking. As someone commented previously, you're dealing with both extreme anxiety and alcoholism, two major issues.

Sobriety demands that we venture into uncharted waters, that we ask of ourselves to be heroic in our own lives and for our own benefit, that we summon personal resources of which we have been largely unaware and that have generally lie dormant, rarely needed and seldom called upon in our everyday lives. Very few people make such a choice; nor do we generally trust that we're up to the challenge. Such things as boredom, denial, laziness, procrastination, and continued drinking despite negative consequences, long after whatever benefits we enjoyed from drinking turn on us, are all based on fear. We're summoned to turn our fears against themselves in order to thrive. We cannot do this by thinking alone or by any other sleight of mind, and few of us can accomplish this feat without help.

Continued sobriety also requires very some specific attributes, such as patience, perseverance and compassion, as well as radical changes in the way we think, things we rarely practice, and only in an extremely limited way, while we're drinking. I'm seeing a lot of self-flagellation in your comments. You're dissecting your very self without anesthesia (with the exception of your brief foray into drinking again), denying yourself the very help that you need based on a traumatic past experience with your sister. You'd be livid, and rightly so, if someone else were to treat you they way you've been treating yourself in your comments.

There are solutions available to abort this ill-advised and painful surgery, but you dismiss them, based on what are essentially irrational beliefs. I don't care whether or not you try medication to help you; I have no personal stake in this issue. Submitting to medication treatment is not "buying into" and subsidizing "Big Pharma," substituting one addiction for another, demonstrating a profound weakness, or giving in to "The Man." Those perspectives are unhelpful for those of us who are suffering and are better left to conspiracy theorists and people for whom denial is a way of life. Or for those who've found something else that works for them. Choosing to live in both acute and chronic fear is the weakness to the extent that we don't explore all possible solutions, particularly when making such a choice only leads to more misery. At the very least, you'd likely benefit from ongoing and regular treatment from a skilled therapist, preferably one who specializes in anxiety disorders and who's fluent in psychopharmacology.

It's very easy to buy into extreme examples in which psychotropic medications have played a major role in creating additional suffering, even death, as was the case with your sister. But such examples are extraordinarily rare in comparison to the overall population who use medication to improve their lives. And the dramatic examples of these cases are so persuasive simply because they are both rare and extreme.

I see nothing wrong, and several potential long-term benefits, with giving yourself one or more honest trials with anxiolytic medications. By 'honest' I'm referring to giving the meds the proper time to work. Not all of them work for everyone, and some people are unable or unwilling to tolerate the side effects. Some people are also not aware that there are non-addictive options for the pharmacological treatment of anxiety. In the end, if you're suffering the kinds of severe anxiety that you so eloquently describe in your comments, and in such painful detail, then you owe it to yourself to get all the help you need. This is not a philosophical question, nor is it a political debate. It's about the quality of life you've settled for, and the risks you're willing to take that healing will come about without any additional help.

We never forfeit our right to complain about our suffering, but the law of diminishing returns applies in an interpersonal context: The more we suffer from and feel attacked by our condition and the less we do something serious about it, the less likely are other people to care. That's when it's easiest to just give up. We are all simply human.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:57 PM
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AO, you are an actor, right?

So how is it in when you are prepping for stage/film (not sure what you do).

I need to speak in front of large audiences about our research... also write about it. It's always been very challenging for me. I'm really not a natural stage person. After all these years, still, almost each time I need to step up and start my "work" out there, before it happens, I feel I would die.

Then, somehow, I'm up there... and all anxieties vanish. And I'm in my element... Not always, but often, and these "often" times are the ones that keep reinforcing my speaking skills

If we can overcome *this*... I think we can overcome any anxiety
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Old 06-19-2014, 05:05 PM
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AO - a friend of mine bought me the book called "The Highly Sensitive Person", as I am that type as well. Can't say I read much of it, but clearly she thought I needed it. I also get overwhelmed and drinking always helped. If you want details on my panic attacks and ER visits and how it's affected my life, just ask.

You mentioned Xanax...were you honest with your doctor about your history of alcohol abuse? We both know that you know better than this, AO. Maybe it's been harder to give up the ghost than you wished...I know I felt that way and used other drugs for a while after quitting alcohol as well. You're not alone. But you can beat this, we know you're determined.

As you get your legs back under you, I wonder if you should be more aggressive in getting the anxiety under control. Be well, get right, get back to a good place - and then take a hard-line stance and make this a priority. I'm sorry you don't have people in your life that understand, it's so hard...all the best to you.
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Old 06-19-2014, 05:08 PM
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But, damn, that feels just too daunting, too insurmountable at the present moment.





That is how I feel exactly.
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Old 06-19-2014, 05:40 PM
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No meds Endgame. It might be cutting off my nose to spite my face but the side effects would effectively knock out any benefits for me. I can't justify meds because I couldn't handle a crazy day in a crazy place. I am going to an Endocrinologist in a few weeks just to make sure the old ovaries are still functioning after the hysterectomy. Hormone imbalances can reak havoc on anxiety. So that might be playing a part in all of this as well.

BIG - I would NEVER EVER NEVER EVER NEVER mix benzos with booze. It's one or the other. Never both. Never on the same day even.

Haennie - I am an actor. And it's not unlikely for the stage manager to have to hold the curtain while I run to the bathroom before I go on. I have had full blown panic attacks on stage, but have always been able to right myself when I get lost in my character. Easy ? No. Worth it ? Every time.

I decided to go for a walk tonight rather than hit the bottle. A migraine with aura commenced shortly after I began. I pushed through it and decided to keep walking. Through the kalidescope. It was painful but beautiful. If you have never seen an aura, it's pretty damn spectacular. And a nice warning as to what will ensue shortly thereafter.

Mommas brains are clearly scrambled. But y'all are really helping me sort my yolks from the whites.

Grateful.
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Old 06-19-2014, 05:54 PM
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No meds Endgame. It might be cutting off my nose to spite my face but the side effects would effectively knock out any benefits for me.
Thats your prerogative. But this ^ suggests no more wine then - awesome!

D
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