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  • Page 33 of 33 FirstFirst ... 23313233
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    Thread: It's my turn

    1. #321
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      Huge congrats on your 6 months of sobriety @4theboyz! Dark days will surely come, they do for everyone. Just remember what got you to 6 months sober and use it to get through!
      Last edited by abcowboy; March 3rd, 2019 at 08:01 AM.
      Quitting and staying quit isnít easy, itís learning a whole new way of thinking. Itís accepting a new way of life, and not just accepting it, embracing it...
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    3. #322
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      Re: It's my turn

      Congratulations on 6 months! Part of the reason I stick around here is to be sure to remember where I was and easily could be again if I choose to drink. Maybe you could consider sharing what you learned at Lighthouse, helping others while you help yourself. All the best, NS


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    5. #323
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      Re: It's my turn

      Hello NoSugar...I plan on doing just that. Selfishly, I archive here what I learn and experience so I have a record to review if and when stupidity kidnaps my sanity again. This time is different from all the other "day 1's". The handwriting on the wall is loud and clear that I **HAVE** to stay sober as there are not enough donor livers out there for me if I do something that stupid as drink again. Sadly one thing that did happen in my time at Lighthouse was meeting a lady 5 years younger than me start the program with stage 4 liver cancer. She was such a sweet thing and so hopeful her stint at sobriety would qualify her for the transplant list. She fought a great fight but lost after 3 rough months of fighting as hard as she could. Nothing could serve as a bigger wake up call than watching someone you know and are rooting for die before your eyes from her addiction to booze. There was another gentleman 7 years older than me who had a year and a half of sobriety and would attend our meetings simply as a check in. His words were always full of wisdom and encouragement. We always sat next to each other...no real reason why we just happened to do so. It was so surreal to show up at the very next meeting only to be told he had died the night before from a sudden heart attack. It was easy to mourn his loss, but I chose to celebrate the fact that he had lived one and a half years sober and free of the shackles of alcohol addiction. More than a little inspiration from him for me to stay sober.
      Last edited by 4theboyz; March 3rd, 2019 at 04:23 PM.
      Is Addiction Really a Disease?
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    7. #324
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      Re: It's my turn

      Day 201

      THE PAIN

      Pain more than likely is what helped ‘seal the deal’ in coming to the realization your addiction has gone too far too long and it was time to ‘throw in the towel’ and seek help. These painful experiences of ‘hitting bottom’, the physical pain of addiction in all it’s many forms, coupled with the emotional pain and confusion that has become so overwhelming you can’t think straight, is what drove you into rehab and seek help with quitting. This pain in all it’s glory will be the single most important factor in your success or failure in rehab, long-term sobriety and recovery.

      In the first early days of quitting, this pain is so fresh, so visceral that you will almost do anything to prevent it from happening ever again. So, why is this so important to recovery you might ask especially when just starting out in recovery and all you want to do is eliminate that pain and forget all about it.

      People who are addicted just don’t wake up one day and say to themselves…”Gee, my life seems not so good, I think today I will quit this nonsense”. Nope, addicts have likely known for more than a little while their behaviors were becoming destructive and many addicts have already had one, two, three or more attempts at quitting and at some point something triggers a re-lapse.

      The *ONLY* way a relapse is going to be possible is because we forgot about “that pain”. That very same enormous pain that caused us to quit in the first place. This is how it goes every time an addict attempts to quit their addiction and relapses.

      Then why does someone who experienced something so bloody awful, that after just a few days, a few weeks, a few months even years of sobriety, pick up their addiction where they left off? Because they simply forgot. They forgot that pain, that gigantic pain so intense they will often say it was the worst pain they ever felt, yet here they are back at that same behavior that nearly destroyed their lives.

      Memories of pain no matter how sever do fade, just ask any mother of more than one child. Addicts too will forget just how painful their addiction was. Did time heal that wound that let them forget their pain? The reality is no! They simply chose not to remember that pain which led to a slip and then a relapse and why remembering this pain is so crucial to long term recovery and sobriety.

      In the first weeks of recovery, you will remember that pain because it is so fresh and it will serve as a very effective motivator for an addict to do the early steps of abstinence. Each new sober day is just one more step further away from the memory of that pain and absent strong reminders of that pain, one will begin to have difficulty recalling just how bad it was for them. Triggers, urges and reminders of our past behaviors that got us high will begin to creep in and steal the show from that pain and now you are wrestling with your addictive behaviors.

      Now the swan song of those euphoric days of getting high are calling you out and you may be using tools like AA meetings, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, mindfulness, exercise to help keep your eye on the ball of sobriety. This is why those painful memories will be so important to your continued sobriety as having them at arm’s length in one of many forms you can turn to in these difficult times to serve as that crucial reminder to not surrender to that urge to drink or use again. To simply make a mental pledge to remember is not enough. That pain has to take a form that you can use as a tool anytime anyplace to wake you up sufficiently to have the strength to say “NO” again and again.

      Do what you can to get a good record of the pain, write down every little detail of that pain, record it, have a friend, S/O, spouse, sponsor or anyone who will remind you when needed that you are strong enough to resist that temptation to ‘fall off the wagon’. Go to meetings to where you can regularly hear the painful stories of addiction and the disasters that followed.

      Over time, the good will eventually out weigh the bad to where simply living your new sober life will be more than enough to be strong enough to say “no more” to the urges and triggers of your past addiction.
      Today I am strong and sober and I embrace all the good things I now have in my life all because I never want to feel that pain again and most import of all is… *I…Don’t…Drink*
      Last edited by 4theboyz; March 5th, 2019 at 12:33 PM.
      Is Addiction Really a Disease?
      Watch this and find out....
      http://youtu.be/ekDFv7TTZ4I

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    9. #325
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      Re: It's my turn

      Day 208

      Message In A Bottle

      "SLAMMING ON THE BRAKES"

      Dopamine is that “feel good” chemical the brain produces when it encounters a substance or event that it deems positive and the brain releases copious amounts of this powerful chemical that generates a euphoric “high” as a reward to ensure a repeat of this experience.

      Virtually every substance that appears beneficial to our lives and the preservation of our species ultimately can cause harm and even death if left unchecked. This is why our brain and body was equipped with pain receptors that serve as a warning that too much of a good thing or even anything that is just plain bad for us is something we don’t again repeat.
      One sinister aspect of the push/pull dynamic between the brains’ ability to manage these good and bad experiences can fall out of balance. Just like hitting the brakes of your car time and time again, they will wear out and if not maintained they will ultimately fail to stop the car. This is what happens when addiction takes over the wheel and your brain can no longer put the brakes on this feel good behavior that is now causing your mind and body to suffer the addictive repercussions of “too much of a good thing”.

      Your brains’ inability to put the brakes and stop the destructive chronic cycle of overuse of any substance is probably why you are reading this. As a last-ditch effort to end your addiction, you have had to pull the emergency brake and come to a stop. Now there is a critical choice to make. Do you take corrective action to repair this malfunctioning part of your brain in an effort to stop the addiction, or do you simply release the brake and continue down the road of addiction?

      Stopping the use of any addictive drug or substance can leave a large void in your brain that if left unattended, will cause an unbearable craving for more of this feel good substance. Making better choices with healthier substitutes will help you travel safely down the road of recovery and here are 10 things you can do right away that will help you in your sober journey.

      1. Eat Lots of Protein
      2. Eat Less Saturated Fat
      3. Consume Probiotics to Restore/Boost Digestive Tract Function
      4. Eating Velvet Beans Boosts Dopamine Levels Naturally
      5. Exercise Often/Daily
      6. Get Plenty of Sleep
      7. Listen to Music
      8. Meditate
      9. Get Enough Sunlight
      10. Consider Vitamin & Mineral Supplements
      * 1 Best Ways to Increase Dopamine Levels Naturally **(Discuss all of the above with your Doctor)

      Today I am strong and sober and I embrace all the good things I now have in my life all because I never want to feel that pain again and most import of all is… *I…Don’t…Drink*
      Last edited by 4theboyz; March 12th, 2019 at 12:55 PM.
      Is Addiction Really a Disease?
      Watch this and find out....
      http://youtu.be/ekDFv7TTZ4I

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    11. #326
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      Re: It's my turn

      Day 212

      Live Life
      Be Strong
      Go Forward
      Leave Hell Behind


      I wrote these words just now with the goal to write a short inspiration that would help me better navigate days and times like the fairly challenging last 2 days. The last 2 days at work were especially challenging because of how work issues became impossibly tangled with just as demanding issues in my personal life. If I dared paused at all during it, the familiarity of these exact same stressful collisions of my senses and sensibilities that once were swiftly anesthetized by my trusty bottle of vodka. I lived those 48 hours determined to not do anything different than I had been doing the last 6 months. What I am doing is working so why do anything different. Though I must admit, I was a bit surprised by just how much attention that stress demanded of my resolve to stay sober. Stress and urges to drink have been reduced to mere moments like the flash of a camera and they were gone. This time was like the old days...almost said good ol' days but I caught myself as there was nothing good about being an obsessive selfish alcoholic. 3 words kept my wheels firmly on the road...*I* *Don't* *Drink*. I would not consider the past 2 days as even moving the needle backwards in my recovery and if anything just the opposite. I just wanted to acknowledge the presence of the triggers, urges and cravings that can still ambush and pick a fight and I sense this will pretty much happen for the rest of my life.

      Since I enjoy writing, I wanted to document this experience and a mere play by play, is frankly getting boring. I wanted something more poignant, something that would serve as a "break glass in case of an emergency" resource. A big part of this motivation came from a recent meeting where I was asked, "what do you do to stay sober when shit hits the fan?" Depending on how much time you have, I could recap all the tricks, therapies, breathing etc. but I felt that I needed something more, something simple, concise...a touch stone of sorts that would always be there when my sobriety was being challenged. I boiled 400 words down to 4 sentences and a total of nine words. Live life, be strong, look forward, leave hell behind. To me those words hold so much power, strength and control that no matter the situation I feel I stand a great chance to laugh temptation in the face.
      Last edited by 4theboyz; March 16th, 2019 at 01:12 AM.
      Is Addiction Really a Disease?
      Watch this and find out....
      http://youtu.be/ekDFv7TTZ4I

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    13. #327
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      Re: It's my turn

      Youíre stronger than you were before the couple stressful days! I like your strong, forward-thinking 9 words. You also mentioned the 3 that immediately pop into my head:
      .*I* *Don't* *Drink*.
      I hope your tough bit is followed by a relaxing weekend.


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    15. #328
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      Re: It's my turn

      Quote Originally Posted by NoSugar View Post
      I hope your tough bit is followed by a relaxing weekend.
      Thank you @NoSugar...it has been a wonderful weekend. I was able to sit on our deck and sip coffee this am for the first time in 4 months. One long ass brutal winter is now behind us here. Hope your weekend was top notch too!
      Is Addiction Really a Disease?
      Watch this and find out....
      http://youtu.be/ekDFv7TTZ4I

    16. #329
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      Re: It's my turn

      Day 213

      Message In A Bottle

      BLIND SPOT

      I was inspired to write today, where once again while driving, a car appeared out of nowhere due to the blind spots most cars inherently have. “Blind spot” totally defines that one or more elements of my addictive behavior that in retrospect I just did not see coming.

      In my case I am referring to stress. You almost can never see stress coming at you and is equally difficult to prepare for stress to occur. Two days at work last week were unusually loaded with challenges to overcome and that is a sure-fire recipe for stress to build up. It did not feel stressful to me when it was all going down as that is just another day on the job. But by the second day of extra helpings of challenges, I was pretty overloaded and despite 7 months of sobriety, I was unexpectedly challenged by stronger than usual urges to put out the fire with a drink. At this stage of the game, urges are rather mundane and easy enough to navigate and are over with in the blink of an eye. Often so minuscule on the scale of things that they come and go almost unnoticed. So why those 2 days even registered with me is where the term Blind Spot came to define what I experienced.

      On one hand, I did not see that stress in my field of view even though it was right there in front of me. I also did not expect my mind to be so affected by this stress and so much so, my mind reached deep into the chasm of my mind to ring the bell for that trusty cure to stress and that is of course a drink.

      My resolve and dedication to never drinking again is more than enough to resist this demand for a drink and then take the appropriate actions to effectively detour my way around that stressful moment. It took one hour of very intense exercise to chase that daemon of stress out of my body and I finally felt relieved and relaxed having done so.

      But the significance of that experience is what has caught my attention and added surprise of the intensity of it as well. Yes, even after 7 months of solid recovery efforts I did not see this one coming and why it now has earned the title of being called a blind spot in my recovery. Truth be told I cannot imagine anything I did wrong or could do different to avoid this blind spot. It’s just there and probably will always be. I am just grateful I have a solid well-rehearsed plan of action to help me navigate even blind spots in my life. Ask yourself what are the blind spots in my recovery efforts?

      Today I am strong and sober and I embrace all the good things I now have in my life all because I never want to feel that pain again and most import of all is… *I…Don’t…Drink*
      Last edited by 4theboyz; March 17th, 2019 at 09:55 PM.
      Is Addiction Really a Disease?
      Watch this and find out....
      http://youtu.be/ekDFv7TTZ4I

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