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Saturday Encouragement

imageWeekends can be hard, even when things are on track. It’s only Saturday afternoon and I’ve already exhausted myself with busy-ness.

Yesterday we hosted a family gathering to celebrate my dad’s 80th birthday. I took the day off to cook a feast for 24 (4 generations were here!) and I quite enjoyed the whole process and event. Today we were up early to head to an out-of-town funeral.

I’m now on the couch in my lulus, grateful that there’s leftovers in the fridge for supper. Time for some self-care. Time to offer the same kindnessto myself as I often extend to others.

What challenges are you facing this weekend? What has gone well? What new tools are you trying out, and what lessons can you share?

 

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About UnPickled

I am learning to walk without the crutch of alcohol. As I begin I am 1 day sober. Gulp. I drank in private and hope to quit just as privately. The purpose of this blog is to help make me accountable - just by following you will give me enormous support and encouragement.

Posted on March 12, 2016, in Getting Sober, Insights and Lessons, Life After Alcohol and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 25 Comments.

  1. Hi ~
    Just found this blog and am really enjoying reading it. Great suggestions and I am absolutely in need of support. I’m on day 1, again. Already I have doubts I will make it through this day….and it’s just past noon. I cannot see my sober evening that should be tonight. Looking for a sober penpal…anyone??
    I will continue to read and reach out where I can. Thanks for all these posts to help me not feel so lost and spinning.

    Like

    • You can do it, Cleo. Let’s plan your evening right now. If you were babysitting your 12-yr-old self, what would you plan for a nice evening? Nail polish, magazines, a movie, hot chocolate and popcorn, a good book, some new pjs, one of those adult colouring books. What nice things can you do for yourself that don’t include booze? Ps – studies show that sugar can negate alcohol cravings by tricking the brain, so have some fruit or sweet snacks on hand and munch them guilt-free!

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      • Ok well it’s almost 6pm. And I’ve made it this far. I’ve found myself avoiding my house. I love all those ideas, although these days all those things I would do while getting blotto. Because that makes them ‘fun’. I’ve used that excuse so many times….that getting a buzz makes mundane tasks better. I literally just took a 30-40 min nap in my car, in my driveway because I was afraid I wouldn’t have made it into my house without following the same old routine. Blotto was such a part of everything….made everything more enjoyable. Until the next day and I feel like shit about myself for having no self control. And I have a blast getting that buzz, the highlight of most days. Yet I forget or neglect things I should be doing. Except I’m not ready for the to-do list yet. I need to stop the voice in my head first that tells me to just give in.
        Honestly, this message right now might be what gets me through today…or maybe just a few more hours. Which would still be an improvement. I might have to go roam around the grocery store or some other store to kill time. Being home alone is the worst! And like many, this is a secret issue, a secret self loathing (that I defend to the ends when questioned!) and my secret battle to stop. My goal right now is to call tomorrow day 2. Not day 1 again. I’m not sure I can do this! It’s been over a decade as a solid habit and everyday for at least 3 years. Although recently I made it 22 days then caved. That’s the longest I’ve gone in years. The thought of forever quitting isn’t even in my vocabulary yet although I know that’s what I need.
        Ok, next few hours plan…perhaps I’ll go tanning (I live in a very grey town), then a bath and then paint nails. All self care options. Things that do make me happy and I can get there sober. Sleeping sober will be something I deal with in a few hours. Thanks so much for responding! I need support and I feel mostly surrounded by judgement (hence the secrecy) and enablers who would make jokes at my attempts to quit.

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        • Did you make it through the night ok?i So relate to your struggles – especially where you say getting a buzz helps mundane tasks seem better. It isn’t just better, alcohol seems to help me focus. Temporarily that is, but with so many other downsides. Have been going 4-6 days without alcohol then relapse on weekends. Totally unsupportive “partner”, if I can even call him that. Had a bottle of wine today, which is unusual. Usual is beer. But I had the wine on hand, I never buy it, but it was for a neighbor, and we never got together. So it sat here for a week. Trigger was sadness, and trying to avoid the fact that the guy I’m with doesn’t love me. I’m not awfulizing, he said so and I am too afraid to leave. My self respect is totally shot. I’m not giving up, but just sorting through this relapse.
          I hope you found strength to get to day 2. If not, don’t judge yourself. It will be day 1 for both of us.

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          • I made it through the night and yesterday. Amazingly. So today is my day 3. And I am committed to making it through day 3. But it’s been extremely difficult….as in I waver back and forth within minutes, multiple times an hour. Sometimes I tell myself it’s ok in one hour…to just make it one more hour….holding out for one more hour would STILL be an accomplishment. This helps a little and I find I have more strength or have to play the hour game again. Or I hide or leave my house. Sadness is a HUGE trigger for me too. Hence, I’ve been fucked up almost everyday since I found out my mom was sick. Cancer. She made it four months. Four months of hell. I would find myself going into the parking garage late at night to drink or get high then return to the hospital and sleep on the couch to be close to her and there if needed. She couldn’t tell and I couldn’t deal with my reality. And now it’s almost been three years from the day she died. I’ve been fucked up almost every day since. Not always noticeable just enough to numb my world. I was 34 and she was my best friend. I feel the loss daily. So sadness and avoidance are so entwined with my ways, I totally get it. To add to the battle, I just broke up with my bf last night. He also does not love me. He doesn’t have to say it for me to know. He has never said ‘I love you’. And yet I love him with all my heart. So unfair. He is never there for me, criticizes me constantly, and can be downright cruel. We were together for three years, then just faded apart for one (no official breakup) then back together. He’s an alcoholic but the first person to berate me at every turn. I’m never good enough and he’s always right. I’m tired of feeling like shit. I do enough of that to myself. I tried to explain how hard this is for me and I’m trying to stop and he looked at me like I had three heads. He drinks every day but it’s different (he says) because he can have just two then be done. He made fun of me for having the last half glass of the wine on Valentine’s Day this year. Like I was going to save that much of a bottle?? You don’t need to be with someone who doesn’t love you. In my experience, it does not help. We were a pretty picture I painted in my head but not so pretty to live those unloved feelings. I am not judging by any means. I spent 3 years with a man that would sigh and get frustrated with me when I cried randomly after my mom died. That’s pretty bad. He would be angry at me when my sister called me crying and I would drop everything to talk to her. He didn’t get it but he also didn’t need to be so cruel. I needed comfort and to be loved and he just didn’t/couldn’t/wouldn’t. But I couldn’t leave…I was terrified of being alone even more at that point. I only wished it would change (which it didn’t) or plan B….get so fucked up that it didn’t matter. I loved him and he would open up to me eventually. Or so I thought and wished but it didn’t happen. Last night, I’d had enough. If I wrote out every cruel thing he has said to me this post would never end. And sober me just might kill him…lol. No way to numb how let down and hurt I feel. I cannot do this with him in the picture. And catch 22, without him ALL my triggers are now amplified by 100. I want to fight them though…I really do. It’ll be both harder and easier without him. We don’t get to choose who we love. Someone once said to me and I find myself repeating it like a mantra “Loving someone doesn’t make them good for you.” Still, parts of me are screaming to call him today and apologize, asking for another chance and parts of me are screaming to make party plans with other people for the evening to get through it. I’m going to try to not do either of those things.
            You can do this day 1 again…it’s ok to have repeated day 1’s. I’ve had my fair share and more. If you are up for replying or talking it out, I will check this thread a few times today.

            One weird thing that has helped me is: I’ve drawn a heart on myself with a fine sharpie or a pen and put my day count inside the heart. It washes off in the shower the next day and it’s in a place that only I can see. But it’s a reminder that I am doing this for myself out of love. And the number helps me remember that today I am on day 3 and I’m proud of that tiny number 3 inside a heart on my body. I carry it with me so I can always look when I’m feeling like giving in. And sometimes I sit and trace over and over that heart to remember why I’m doing this. Ink poisoning? maybe. But blotto myself to the grave…I’m desperately hoping not.

            Like

            • Thank you for sharing all this. Here you are on Day 3 and already you are seeing things clearly. Listen, brave friend. You deserve love, real love, not a weak imitation. You deserve peace, actual peace in your heart – it’s different than ‘numb’ because it lasts. And you deserve freedom – not to be a slave to addiction, emotions, pain or other people. I absolutely LOVE your secret heart. That’s so beautiful it brings tears to my eyes. Be very very gentle with yourself as you baby step towards your new and better life of love, peace, and freedom. And please know that the terrible pain of losing your mom can finally heal when you are alcohol free. Numbing is like pushing “pause” on healing. We feel better for a bit but the pain lasts longer because we aren’t moving forward. Big hug. You are doing it! Keep going!

              Like

              • Thank you, Unpickled. Thanks for calling me brave (I needed that), thanks for talking about real love, lasting peace and freedom and how I deserve that. I guess I’ve never said it like that, I’m usually consumed with what I don’t deserve. I need to spin that to the positive and goal setting view. My heart is my secret daily ritual and it helps that I do have to redraw it each morning. Reminding myself that I again choose sober for that day. Day 3 and I’m finding exhaustion to be my biggest battle. Is that anyone else’s experience? Perhaps it’s from the emotions? Looking forward to the more energetic sober me to resurface.

                Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi.scared one minute and ok the next. Bloated, sick and very happy to not be hungover. I really want to make it this time. Thank you for asking.

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  3. Day 3 and reading your blog Unpickled. Thank you.

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  4. Hi Jean!
    It’s after the weekend, but I am enjoying getting a donut or a fancy dessert now.
    Before I would’t because I was drinking all my calories.
    Now hubs and I are trying all the fun donut places around our city.
    There is SO much fun besides drinking.
    There really is!
    xo
    Wendy
    PS – And now I am 500+ days!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • So true Wendy I would never consider a donut or piece of pie when drinking – “they are not good for you” Yet the booze was?
      Congrats on your new fun

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi. I am new. Sticking close to all of you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Snap – well ish… My mother-in-law turns 80 this week and we did her family celebration this weekend.

    What I learnt? I have to accept the world as is, not as I want it to be. My son and girlfriend were supposed to visit for the celebration but he called and was clearly very ill with flu and we had to change some of the plans but it all worked out good in the end.

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  7. Had cravings hit me out of nowhere after 60 days…. it was exhausting the mental battle. I just kept thinking through how the next day would feel. Kept saying the serenity prayer. eventually it passed after a few hours…

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  8. Lessons to share: I continue to remind me to be kind to me. I often forget the value of being gentle with self. Thanks for the sweet reminder.

    ps… wishing I had some leftover too—guess I’ll cook big tonight and Monday will be a breeze. ♥ Lisa

    Like

  9. We hosted a large family gathering last night! I’m on day 99 today. There was so much drama and alcohol around. Good times as well… I was present for all of it and able to tend to kids in a fun engaging way. I was able to be there for the adults that needed emotional support. A calm constant. It was empowering actually. And ohhhh what a feeling to wake up this morning exhausted, yes. But not hung over and regretful or anxious about what I may have said or done.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I am still in very early sobriety (today is day 16), but am so happy to have a Recovery Counselor. I meet with her weekly, we set tasks and goals for me to accomplish, and I also try to attend one of her Tai Chi classes a week (she even teaches one with essential oils:)) I read a ton of sobriety/recovery material too – still trying to wrap my head around everything. Thank you so much for your wonderful, encouraging, inspirational blog.

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  11. Good for you. still struggling here. You have
    a great blog.

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    • Hi Suzie, thanks for posting. I remember the struggling part, no fun, no fun at all. I’m glad you’re here looking for insights and I hope you are building a vision of what you want and how you might get there. You can do it, it’s possible and sooooo worth it.

      Like

  12. Hi there! Sat evening, start of a week off from work! Alcohol is no longer an option in my life, 300+ days sober. My thought this morning is that whatever I’m looking for, I have to give. I find so much encouragement and inspiration in this – thank-you!!! – and a couple of other sober blogs, and increasingly, as the days mount up, I feel increasingly connected to the sober community. So I’ve started to comment more, reply to people’s posts on livingsober.org.nz and offer the encouragement and support that I so appreciate.

    Best to all out there!!

    Liked by 3 people

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