Observations at 1 year, 3 months sober and DEAR MAN.

Name: Heldy
Drug of choice: alcohol
Clean date: 7/24/17
Days sober: 1 year, 3 months

I am feeling contemplative because of how I feel about where I am today as a non-drinker as opposed to some more euphoric folk. I said I wanted to not feel one way or the other about alcohol, and I’ve mostly arrived at this place. I was speaking to my mother about this the other day. About the “why me and why alcohol”.  I’ve come to the conclusion that quite simply it was how I learned at a very young age to cope with distress. It worked really well at that. It’s a pretty simple answer, but it feels absolutely spot on. So with that said, and knowing the brain does heal from the alcohol abuse; recreating healthy neuropathways given enough time, and if one has learned how to cope with distress with healthy methods further strengthening those neuropathways, what would stop me from trying a drink again someday in a social context? The simple answer is why take that risk? Why, if I have indeed learned how to cope with distress in healthy ways, learned how to socialize without it, replaced so many negative aspects of it with positive or at the very least, lack of negative, why would I risk it? She talked about how many years it’s taken for her to heal her gut and that she felt the same way about gluten (granted that is a far less complicated substance). Why would she risk trying it again after achieving balance without it?

And that is basically where I am.

I see my sister who got sober about 5 months after I did, and she’s euphoric in a lot of ways about her decision. I can’t say I’m there. I am so grateful to no longer be hiding and living in constant terror of being caught while trying so hard to disappear every day, but I’m also not necessarily happy about being sober. I’m ok with this. As I said, I wanted to be indifferent. It does get easier. I still think about it, but never without the adjoining thought of the terror I mentioned.

What I’m working on: Currently the class is working on validation and recovering from non-validation. I was gone from last week’s class as I was out of town. This was an interesting class though and especially interesting after the day I’d had. It was a rough one. I’m under a tremendous amount of stress with work, with my daughter, with my son, and I’m still jet-lagged from my trip. I kind of lost it a couple times. I sobbed from sheer exhaustion and frustration, and I found myself self-comforting myself saying it was ok to lose it. It was ok to be sad. It was ok to not feel ok. Total self-validation, even though some part of me was saying, “C’mon now! Put on your big girl panties – you should know better.”. That thought though didn’t have much of a chance. It felt good to attend class and to look at recent instances in which I naturally did quite well with this, as well as ponder where I could have done things differently and gotten a more pleasing result.

Number of recovery meetings this week: Just DBT.

Success? I’ve gotten a shit ton done. I’m pretty pleased with my time management.

Challenge? My diet and weight. I did keto before my trip for 6 weeks. My sister has dropped over 50 pounds this year with it and is such a fucking inspiration. In the 6 weeks of keeping my carbs 20 or under with the rare couple of days I popped up to mid 20s, as well as keeping the calories between 1000-1500 a day, as well as walking 30 minutes a day about 5 days a week (I know that isn’t much, but it’s what my back will tolerate), it didn’t make a difference. I didn’t weigh myself throughout but just before. My clothes didn’t change how they fit on me. While on this trip, I allowed for the occasional treat because of where I was and knowing I wouldn’t see that food for another year or so. I went to the doctor on Monday and told her my tale, asked if it was possible to try HCG again which has worked and worked really well in the past (I was able to lose 55 pounds and keep it off for 6 or so years) which she seems to think would be ok to try again, and we weighed me. Same as what I was before starting keto. So, I’m back to eating clean, but will start HCG again as soon as possible. It would be nice to drop 52.6 pounds, according to my scale this morning. I’m in no big hurry but over the next 8 months or so. New goal. New focus.

Have you felt triggered since group? For about 3 seconds after falling apart. Nope.

Do you intend to harm yourself or others? No

Homework:

Are you open to feedback? Yes

– Heldy

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