I had plenty of similar episodes, I just never had an audience

well, it would seem like saturdays are rough. four Team 100 members emailed to ask that their counters begin again 1 after this past weekend … Being on the receiving end of so many thoughtful, touching, insightful emails from so many Team 100 members, i get emails that say “something bad happened, i didn’t do enough to prevent it, i could feel it coming but i didn’t get out of the way, i should have stayed home, can you start me again at one.”

they are NOT saying “oh well i’m on a bender now, see you next year.”

it’s like the next morning, after something bad happens, i get an email: “reset me at one. i am going to do this. i can do this. thanks for being there.”  I feel somewhat positive when i get an email right away, and if the slip doesn’t last more than 24 hrs. OK, I guess positive isn’t really the right word, but i feel somewhat encouraged. In the beginning, and until we have our tools in place … well, shit does sometimes happens.  that wolfie, he can be relentless. relapse doesn’t have to happen, and i don’t know enough about this, but i don’t suspect that relapse is unfortunately common on the way to ongoing sobriety.

And before you say something like, “well Belle you quit and haven’t relapsed in 10 months…”  all that means is that I didn’t announce i was quitting until after my stop-and-start stage.  I had plenty of similar episodes, I just never had an audience (!)…  for months before i actually tried to quit for 30 days, i would stop for a day, or two days, or three days.  i’d quit for 9 days or 6 days or for only half a day.  So yes, the last 10 months have been episode-free for me.

but you didn’t see the inside of my head the year leading up to that point…

and oh, the inside of the head. the thought processes on deciding to get sober: do i really need to, i hate that i can’t drink, why can she be a fuck up and it’s me who’s quitting drinking, why me, why this, why now. red wine, you fucker. wolfie, you fucker.

and while some people in team 100 have stopped and restarted their sober journey right away (about 27%), others are puttering along, adding up days, feeling the weeks start to whiz by (73%). Only two people out of 45 have dropped out entirely. Right this second, 43 people are sober and doing this 100 day challenge together.

Julie (day 158): “Wow, I’m glad to read that there are so many of us now …. I knew I couldn’t be alone in this struggle to quit without AA and look — I was right!!  Feeling stronger by the day and wishing I could share the energy with some of the newbies — it really does get better and easier, and if I can do this at my age (55) after drinking daily for 35 years, then we all can.”

Heidi (day 3): “I am one pissed off chick and I am not going to let alcohol or this damn wolf steal one more second of my life. I am in control and I can do this. Fuck off wolf and fuck you alcohol.”

The geek: “… the real trick is in the support of others who feel the same. I truly believe that there is nothing more powerful than another human who understands where you are coming from.”

Team 100 update: 45 members, 2 missing. Welcome to newest members: Mr. Lynda (36), and Anathu (day 2). Erica is day 84, DDG day 36, Ellen 26, and K is 40. I am on day 297, i have my sense of taste back, i went for a run, and i feel better than i have in a long time!

Belle

I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

10 thoughts to “I had plenty of similar episodes, I just never had an audience”

  1. Thanks for the update. I am not sure how many of us get started and don’t slip, but it’s a common thing. Before detox and treatment, for years I tried stopping many times, even going six months in one shot, but eventually it all crumbles down around us – our coping mechanism is so ingrained in us that it doesn’t take much for it to wake it up. Relapse is part of alcoholism, not a part of recovery. But we get back on the horse and keep galloping, don’t we? Like you reported, no one said “see ya!” and then back to wailing wine back. That is so important. For this alcoholic, I could have another drunk in me, but I don’t have another recovery in me. For me, to drink is to die. But I slid down the scale a wee bit further than some of those here. Not fun, that’s for sure.

    I really like what the geek said about the support being in the understanding of someone else who knows what it’s like. It is only in telling our story and hearing others do we really feel that we are not alone. And in helping someone else, we really are helping ourselves. it’s a win-win situation.

    Great stuff : )

    Paul

  2. To add: and, we DO GET BETTER. It gets better, easier. The “desire”–whatever that is–to drink goes away, and/or is much less easily triggered, fades, is lighter, sort of disappears. We just have to get past that hump, and that hump is the starting and stopping process, the falling off, the convincing ourselves that we can drink, just one more time, not that bad. Pretty soon, even if we CAN drink, do we really want to? We keep flexing that sober muscle–Not Drinking When We Really Want To, Even Though It Majorly Sucks–and we DO GET BETTER. I’m on Day 36 for the 3rd (the 4th time I only made it 35 days!) time, and I feel better than any of the other times. Much more convinced that eh, maybe like Paul, I just don’t have another recovery in me (GREAT insight there, Paul; will become my mantra this time around)…

  3. Yes,yes, yes. Keep doing it, cause every time i do something sober, that was previously an excuse to booze, my brain “time for a drink” signals become weaker and less irritating. I get better with every test. If you can just get through the triggers and get to the other side, the next time will be easier. And that keeps me going.
    Carrie

  4. I am about to start the 100 day challenge at midnight. Recently had made it 15 days and then fell off the wagon (again). Going to keep trying though because I deserve to be sober and those I love the most deserve and need a sober me.

  5. Today is Day 259 for me and when I look back at those early days of sobriety, I was feeling scared, angry, stupid, guilty, sad, shaky and all alone. Wondering how I made my life such a mess? This isn’t what I wanted or wished for when I grew up! It felt horrible to have my closest friends and husband tell me that I had a drinking problem. Wtf?! Me? I was sober for 50 days once and then on Mother’s Day I bought a bottle of wine and shared it with my mom with our dinner, acting as if I didn’t have a problem and that I could control my intake. I was soon back to drinking every other night. One night wine and the next water. Then during that summer it got worse…bam…I hit bottom. So I dumped all the bottles of this or that down the drain, carried them to the recycle bin and started again….that was 259 days ago. I don’t want to do early recovery again, I don’t want to ruin my relationships, I don’t want to be the mom that drinks, I don’t want to hide how much I drank, I don’t want to be controlled by alcohol EVER again! For those who are doing the 100 day challenge…you CAN do it…it will get easier and better!!! The support here is one of the greatest reasons I don’t drink anymore! Thanks Belle!

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