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Day Two: an Un-Smashed Success

Old 07-14-2010, 03:06 AM
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Day Two: an Un-Smashed Success

As I posted earlier, I was down to two glasses of wine per day with plans to cut it out completely within a few days. Well yesterday was the day and here I am wrapping up Day 2, and feeling pretty darned good about it. It hasn't been too difficult and I haven't had any withdrawal symptoms or cravings yet. I had some brief flashes when I was doing things that I would normally associate with drinking, but I wouldn't say it reached craving level. I've never tried to actually quit drinking for good before, but during times I've stopped temporarily for whatever reason (either just wanting to take a break, or when I was due to have surgery, as examples), it seems like I remember the "wanting a drink" feeling hitting after 4 or 5 days, so we'll see what happens. I've taken longer breaks than that, but it's been awhile.

I even went to Costco this morning, and although I usually browse all of the aisles, when I got to the liquor aisle I stopped myself and said (outloud!) "I don't need to go down there. I'm off the wine." I feel a pleasant level of determination that is also new to me.

A little background: I don't think I was ever a "normal" drinker, but over the last year and a half or so it has become a real problem, and for several months I've been drinking most every day. Usually a bottle of wine per day, but sometimes up to two if I started early enough.

In another forum here I made the mistake of saying I didn't want to go to AA or take psych meds for my anxiety and depression, and although I tried to be polite about it, it wasn't well received by some and the resulting discussion was stressing me out. So that's why I'm thinking it's probably a better idea to hang out here for awhile until I'm a little more confident in my sobriety.

I describe myself as a militant agnostic with atheistic leanings, which basically means I'm an atheist who wishes there was something more, but it seems highly unlikely to me. The only thing I know for sure is that I can't know the unknowable, and I don't believe anyone else can either. Some people need to believe in something, so I also have no interest in raining on anyone else's parade in that respect. This is the fundamental reason AA is not for me, but there are others that I won't go into.

I'm kind of a solitary person and I actually like it that way, and even need my solitude to a point, and I've never been good in groups or with structured programs. I'm not counting out one of the formal secular programs completely if it turns out I need one, but at least to start I'm going to try to make it on my own with the help of the support available at SR. I feel very strongly that I need to make my own way, wherever it leads me (even if that is to a group eventually), and also that there is always more than one right way to do anything. I'm new at this and I want to leave my options open. All of them except continued drinking, that is.

I guess that's about it for now. Wish me luck and continued determination for Wednesday!

Tuffy
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Old 07-14-2010, 07:25 AM
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Hi TuffNutt, you're sing my song!

I'm the same as you in that I don't need to "surrender myself completely to a higher power". I would try to start too many debates in a religious based program.

I've never tried to quit before either, but have had a few slow down periods over the years. I used to entertain the idea of quitting for a year a few times, but I knew it would be impossible...my muddled up thinking and cravings would having me drinking in no time.

What's changed everything this time is reading about the physiological reasons for addiction, recognizing I was a full card carrying alcoholic, seeing where I was on the long descent into a slow ugly death and that it was a slam dunk that my drinking had been increasing over the years and it would keep increasing unless I stopped it or died, and finally, that Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS) is what makes a person relapse.

Now I know that my limbic system and a small area at the top of my brain stem are responsible for my alcoholism. They neeeeeeed that soft glow of alcohol, but aren't aware of what is happening to the rest of my brain or body. They have the capacity to control an alcoholic's thoughts and feelings to the point of death despite every health, financial, social, career and family wrecking negative effect.

Evolution has built layer upon layer onto our brains...there's no way I'm going to let the most primitive part control and ruin my life!!!!!!!!!!!!

Have you read these yet?

http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...rch-links.html

Add some more if you find any good links - knowledge is the key.

Murray
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Old 07-14-2010, 07:57 AM
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congrats on your 2 days and here are my ****{best vibes}}} for a SOBER WEDNESDAY for both of us!

you sound great.

(I myself am a *waffler*...yes, sometimes, no other times regarding my beliefs.)
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Old 07-14-2010, 05:08 PM
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Thanks y'all.

I like reading about the science behind the addiction, Murray, so please keep the articles coming. I had read most of them that you have posted but a couple were new to me.

I have gone back and forth myself over the years, Fandy, but the last time I was questioning about ten years ago I undertook a two-year course of study of world religions, out of determination to get to the bottom of it for once and for all (did I mention I'm an info geek? well I guess that proves it, huh? LOL!). At this point the man upstairs himself would have to appear before me to make me waiver from the very simple conclusion I came to, which is that it is something that is impossible to know, therefore we're not supposed to know, and most importantly, we're not required to know. It took a lot of the pressure off.

Everyone has a right to their own truth, but I can't be something I'm not, and I suck at pretending.

I guess I'm having my first "test" today, dealing with a client who seems determined to stress me out. It's not an earth shattering situation, but it's the kind of thing that makes my mind automatically go to hmm...a little drink oughta shut this discomfort down right now! Instead of giving in I'm trying to observe my own thought process like an unbiased third party, to get a handle on what happens right before the point I want a drink so I can learn to avoid going there in my head in the future. It's working so far, but now I have a raging headache and I'm feeling a little irritable to say the least.

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Old 07-15-2010, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by TuffNut
Everyone has a right to their own truth, but I can't be something I'm not, and I suck at pretending.
Me too.

Project MATCH points out that matching people to the best appropriate addiction treatment works best. I find CBT is my best fit in treatment. I need to work a treatment that I can believe in otherwise I just pretending to do the recovery work.
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Old 07-15-2010, 10:06 AM
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How is it going Tuffy?
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Old 07-15-2010, 04:04 PM
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Yesterday was not a good day, but I'm proud of myself for making it through. It was just one problem after another, and by bedtime I was feeling absolutely manic. Luckily I slept well, so I woke up feeling brand new this morning.

I'm not going to lie. It was a struggle not to drink yesterday, and I had two competing voices in my head going back and forth ad nauseam with the "should I or shouldn't I." It helped to feel like I'm accountable to SR now, because I really didn't want to have to log on today and admit to letting my weaker self win.

I had to get creative. I knew I would be OK as long as I could stay home where there is nothing to tempt me, but I had to take my son to a class later in the day. I didn't trust myself to not be having a weak moment just as I happened to drive past a liquor store, so I put together the most hideous outfit I could come up with so I would be too embarrassed to go in anywhere. The child now thinks I'm nuts, but it worked! I didn't even consider buying wine while I was out because I knew there was no way in hell I was getting out of that car.

Day 4 and feeling strong again. Luckily I was able to resolve all of the problems that occurred yesterday, so nothing was hanging over my head this morning, and things have been very calm around here today. I'm self-employed and I work from home, which is somewhat of a double-edged sword. I spend a lot of time here so I can avoid the temptations out in the world more than some people might be able to do, but it also gives me a private place to lose control at any time during the day. Needless to say, there is no alcohol in the house, and there won't be. My husband is fully supportive and only rarely drinks himself.
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Old 07-26-2010, 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by tuffnut View Post
i had to get creative. I knew i would be ok as long as i could stay home where there is nothing to tempt me, but i had to take my son to a class later in the day. I didn't trust myself to not be having a weak moment just as i happened to drive past a liquor store, so i put together the most hideous outfit i could come up with so i would be too embarrassed to go in anywhere. The child now thinks i'm nuts, but it worked! I didn't even consider buying wine while i was out because i knew there was no way in hell i was getting out of that car.
genius!
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