Proclamation of Addiction Rehabilitation Graduation

~~>  I “graduated” from Townsend last night,  <~~
~~>  and tonight’s my last night of required Group sessions.  <~~

with the above opening alone, there’s so many directions into which I could go:

  • I gained a lot of valuable lessons from my 10 weeks in the program.
  • I gained insight from things that were said to me last night from other patients.
  • I’ve decided upon my future approach to alcohol: <insert decision here>.
  • I’ve still yet to decide as to what the fuck I’m going to do about my drinking.
  • I respect myself more for getting into the program.
  • I respect myself more for enduring the extension.
  • I respect myself less for allowing myself to be persuaded into the extension.
  • this was overall a beneficial experience.
  • this was overall utter bullshit and a complete waste of time.

I mean, not only are there many options, but numerous of them even contradict others.  I guess what I can say I’ve definitely gleamed from this is: I’m not really sure about anything.

things I can say are probably true are that I overvalue the opinions of others, that I’m not as strongly in Control of myself as I would otherwise like to be, that I had a serious drinking problem, and that I’m impressive on the shore front.

I don’t know if I’ll never be able to control it, I don’t know if I will work on not drinking at all, I don’t know if I’ll stay in “recovery”, I don’t know wtf “recovery” even means to me.

I spent a lot of years trying to outrun or outsmart vulnerability by making things certain and definite, black and white, good and bad.  My inability to lean into the discomfort of vulnerability limited the fullness of those important experiences that are wrought with uncertainty — love, belonging, trust, joy, and creativity, to name a few.
~ Brene Brown ~

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part of me says the trick is to journal when I am in each of the three main forms: anti-drinking (never drink again), moderate-drinking (or controlled drinking), and fuck-it-all (ready to Quit at everything).

at the moment, for example, I would be in the moderate category: I don’t need or even really want a drink right now, nor any of my other addictions (over- or under-eating, self-injury, pills, speeding, etc.), but I don’t think that I need to give it up for all times forever and ever; moreover, I’m not running through my Suicide Plan in my mind at the moment.  I’m just kinda … hanging loose.  I mean hell, I’m even coherent and motivated enough to write a blog entry.  this is an improvement!

but conversely, not being in the pits of despair, I’m not sure just how far I’ll go in a given situation to stop Hurting — how much I’ll drink, how deep I’ll cut, how many I’ll swallow, how fast I’ll go….  but does any of us ever really know how far we’ll go until we’re actually pushed there?  and even then, how do we know that’s our limits?  aren’t there times that we think, “oh man, this is the worst!”, only to later admit to ourselves, “ahp, we were wrong; this is the worst!”?

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there’s a seedling in me that says I should be making this decision about drinking now, while I’m moderately level.  because when I’m sad, I’m distraught; when I’m happy, I’m manic — we Crazy blokes have no middle ground.

similarly, though, that means the rare middle ground is very foreign.  I’m not commonly here; so why would I make a decision about Situation C when it so rarely occurs?  that’s like saying, “we’ll always keep a bucket of water in the library for fires, because it’s the safe thing to do, even though there’s so rarely any fires here.”  …okay, so that was a shitty simile.  but you get my drift?

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so then here we are.  back at the starting line of the What the Fuck Do I Do Now race.  and even though I’m the key competitor and judge, I still feel like I’m going to lose….

gravity

re·lapse
 /'rə-laps/

verb (used without object), relapsed, relapsing
 1. to fall or slip back into a former state, practice, etc.
 2. to fall back into illness after convalescence or apparent recovery
 3. to fall back into vice, wrongdoing, or error; backslide

noun
 4. an act or instance of relapsing
 5. a return of a disease or illness after partial recovery from it

Gravity
is working against me.
and Gravity
wants to bring me down.

I started the seven-week Townsend intensive out-patient rehabilitation program on November 6th, 2014.  my last day should could have been this Friday.  but instead, it’s been extended three weeks to January 15th.  why?  because I’ve relapsed many times since I started.  for example, one relapse lasted three days.  another occurred just this weekend at the Bowl Game.

oh, I’ll never know
what makes this man,
with all the love
that his heart can stand,
dream of ways
to Throw it all away.

so Brian and I met with the counselor (yes, the same one from a previous post) about the question of extending my treatment.

“what do you think?” the counselor asked me while we were alone.

“I think I’d like to call Brian in here.”

“that’s fine.  but why?”

“because if it’s just up to me, I’d say no, that I’m done with all this.”

“done with it?  relapsing this weekend doesn’t sound like you’ve completed the program.”

I said ‘done with’, not ‘succeeded’, you dumbass, I thought.  but instead, I said nothing and simply shrugged.

oh, twice as much
ain’t twice as good
and can’t sustain
like one have could.
it’s wanting More
that’s gonna send me to
my knees.

Brian talked about wanting me to be happy, about how I should really give the program a chance and do it correctly.  all very good points.

oh, Gravity,
stay the hell away from me.
oh, Gravity,
has taken better men than me.
(how can that be?)

but I don’t know where I stand.  Brian mentioned how he truly believes I want to get Better, but he doesn’t know/understand what I exactly I perceive to be Better — sobriety, controlling my addictions, etc.

just keep me where the Light is.
just keep me where the Light is.
just keep me where the Light is.
c’mon, keep me where the Light is.
c’mon, keep me where the Light is.
c’mon, keep me where, keep me where the Light is.

but honestly, I don’t even know if I want to get Better anymore.  I’m tired of fighting.  depression, addiction, borderline, OCD, anxiety, eating disorder, self-injury, bipolar, so many fucking physical ailments too … I’m feeling really outnumbered in this Battle.  and the more I fight it, the more I’m realising I just don’t care if I Win anymore.  I’m ready to Surrender just to be done with it all…

From birth, man carries the weight of gravity on his shoulders. He is bolted to earth. But man has only to sink beneath the surface and he is free.
~ Jacques Yves Cousteau

Positivity Journal 2014-11-17

so one of my homework from rehab Group is start a Positivity journal.  they didn’t give me any additional details.  as such, I’m creating my own guidelines:

list three things for which you are thankful or that was positive about the day, and discuss them.

 

so here we go for Monday….

  1. watched first Hot Shots with Brian
    1. I really enjoyed this movie and its sequel as a kid.  I love slapstick and visual comedies.
    2. and it was nice watching Brian’s reaction to the movie (he hadn’t seen it in ages).
  2. fasting Wednesday with kik friends
    1. I semi-accidentally organised a fast with my ED kik group.  that’s the same group for whom I made the weight/BMI spreadsheet, but not the same who are losing 40-in-40 with me.  (yes, I have several ED groups, lol.  shut up.)
    2. it’s gonna be hard to do, but I’m excited!
  3. got some grading done already
    1. during the break at Group, I got three essays graded.  not as much as I would have liked, but what can you do.
    2. I also impressed everyone with my dedication and responsibility.  so suck it, junkies, lol.

“Don’t Deconstruct”

I don’t know.  I don’t know what to do.  I’m so tired.  this is all so exhausting.  I don’t feel like I’m getting any better; I just feel like I’ve been stripped of one of my coping mechanisms.

I took a hydrocodone Friday night just to calm my mind.  I took stuff tonight too — some old anti-depressants (that won’t actually do anything with just one dose, but hey, I like my placebo effects).  I just need to stop thinking, to stop feeling … even if only for a few hours.

I don’t really feel happiness or joy or peace, like everyone in Group talks about.  they talk about getting a sense of balance and calmness.  fuck that.  my emotions these last few weeks run on only three scales:  anger, apathy, and depression.

something is changing inside of me;
colors seem darker in light.
and I don’t know what that means,
but it’s not a good sign.
you can just add them up, then you could memorize prehistoric bones
all of those old memories, you can push them out and prep yourself for brand
new Information.

I’m so angry all the time.  pissed at everyone, and everything.  and every additional day without alcohol only makes it worse.  not the lack of actual liquor, but the fact that I can’t have it.  that yet again, someone else is in Control of my life.  I get angry at not being able to have my evenings to myself.  I start my day for work around 6am, and I don’t have free time until 9m when I get home — at which point I have to take my first sleep medication.  what. the righteous. fuck.  and now rehab is telling me I have to go to outside AA meetings on both Saturday and Sunday.  WHEN THE FUCK AM I SUPPOSED TO HAVE ME TIME?  additionally so, when the fuck am I supposed to grade the essays for my second job?!?!  I mean, seriously — what the hell?

and then this whole interlock bullshit.  I get so angry everytime I have to start my car.  I have fucking asthma.  I can hardly breathe like a normal person as is, and now I’m expected to breathe into and out of a machine at a certain strength for nigh 30 seconds.  I had trouble with my C-PAP which helps me breathe; this makes it more difficult.  fuck this shit.

don’t deconstruct,
and then fill me in;
I’m not
that basic, I swear.
I’ve had enough
of breakdowns and diagrams.

eventually, I get so fucking angry, that to keep from breaking things (or myself), I have to stop caring; I just become apathetic.  I just stop giving a fuck about anything.  because caring pisses me off; so we just won’t care about anything.

“where do you wanna eat, James?”
“I don’t give a fuck.  I don’t even fucking care if I ever eat again.”  “I don’t care if I ever watch a movie again.”  “I think I may just take some sleeping pills; fuck the rest of the day.”

just thinking about making a decision starts to make me tired.  so I resort to complete apathy.  I just stop fucking caring.

judging from picture books, apparently heaven is a partly
cloudy place.
and if the sky opened up, and they let you in and gave you
a formal invitation,
would you go?

from which point, I get depressed.  the idea that I will never again be truly Happy or at Peace.  I fight off tears (I still never did really cry about the whole DUI thing), I feign apathy to Brian and those around me, so as not to let on just how bad it really is.

I mean, just the notion that I will cycle between those two phases of anger and apathy forever only adds a third one: depression.  I hopeless.  completely, utterly hopeless — a state of lacking any and all Hope.  it’s getting really bad.

you can work from Home.

the last item on the questionnaire we have to fill out for rehab Group is about suicidal idealizations, thoughts, plans, or attempts.  I answer everytime “just the usual thoughts and desires; no plans or attempts”.  today, it was “heightened thoughts and desires”.

I’m tired of being only angry, apathetic, or depressed.  it’s exhausting.  and it sure as hell isn’t worth it.

Control

Group last night was, I suppose … progressive? productive?  actually, let’s go with just “not a waste of time”.

we talked about our barriers to Recovery.  some people said friends or situations or family, some said reluctant to find and trust a sponsor, some (including myself) said a hesitant of reaching out to others when in need.  but my biggest barrier, the one I really discussed, was a lack of Control.

those who know me understand my need for Control.  not over you or a given situation, mind you.  fuck all that; I couldn’t care less.  but me, and my life.  I never went to rehab before because I thought I could do it on my own.  I value willpower, personal control, and independence.  but when it comes to my Addictions, I apparently have none of that.

but what I talked about yesterday was how I have no control, no say-so, in my life anymore.

I was an A student, member of a trillion clubs, volunteered for everything, the mediator in my family, the pillar for my friends, and the leader of all my groups.  I was always what others needed me to be.  not because I needed to please them or for them to like me; that’s no more of an issue for me than the average bloke.  rather, it’s because I always thought it was my duty.  I mean, that’s how I was raised.

Mum:  “how did X did on her test?”
moi:  “she got a C.”
Mum:  “a C?  why didn’t you help her study?”
because suddenly my friends’ grades are my responsibility.

I still remember one of the things that made me cut the most back in high school during The Incident: Mother expressed how I didn’t do a sufficient job during the Spring Fling fundraiser for a club of which I was the president.  I didn’t do a good enough job; I was insufficient; my efforts were unacceptable.

so having my own life was never really a thing I considered, never something I felt.  sure, I chose the clubs I was in.  but I always felt I was obligated to not only be in them, but to also lead them.

eventually, I become an adult.  often times I was working two jobs, helping different people along the way with whatever, and still dabbling as the family mediator, even though I was no longer living there.  over the years, I’ve let a lot of those responsibilities go, sure — and with great effort and some resistance.  but still, I’m the leader; I’m responsible.

and then comes alcohol.  around 8pm some nights, it’s my time.  I can drink.  I can forget my responsibilities, my duties, my obligations.  I can just be me.  if I’m sad, I can cry.  if I’m pissed, I can be angry.  I don’t have to front for anyone, because no one (except recently Brian) was even around during these periods.

drinking was mine.  I didn’t have to share it with anyone if I didn’t want to.

and now?  now I have nothing.  I spend my entire day at work five of seven days, and I have to go to Group for the whole evening.  once I finally get home, I barely have time to even workout for an hour before it’s bedtime.  and now my rehab center is telling me I have to go to at least two additional outside meetings on top of the five with them.  fucking when??  I have two goddamn jobs.  I go to church with my dad on Sundays.  I’m already going to an AA meeting Saturday night.  I have shit I have to do over the weekend — grade essays, create lesson plans, work on my car, cook, go grocery shopping, exercise, etc.  I’ve cancelled all my plans for the next two months, because I know I won’t have any fucking time to really see anyone.

I have no Control in my life.

———

except my eating.  my EDNOS has come back strong.  on my NerdFitness forum, I pretended to be … erm, disgruntled?…. with the fact that yesterday I ate less than 900kcal.  but honestly, I’m proud; I’m pleased; I did great.  you can take my alcohol, you can take my cutting, you can take my fucking evenings and weekend and money and license — but I’ll be damned if you’re going to take away my eating habits.

it’s not about being skinny (though that would be nice).  it’s about Control.  it’s about knowing that somewhere in these 28 years, my life is still at least somewhat mine.  it’s about knowing I can still exert self-control and willpower.  it’s about knowing that I’m strong and capable and independent.

———

I’m somewhat angry at those who want me to dry up.  because they’re taking simply another thing away from me, in a life where I already feel like I have so little to claim as my own.

I’d rather not even be alive.  yet still I wake every morning.  for them.  the least they could do is let me have my alcohol, let me have my skin and blades, let me have my own eating habits.

but no.  I have a feeling soon even my ED will be attacked.  and then I’ll have nothing.

and when I have nothing, I may Depart…..

embarrassing email to boss

so I just sent the following email to my supervisor:

Ms. Katherine,

It plagues me to have to inform you that in the last month, I received a DUI due to new medication I was taking. I haven’t heard yet on what the repercussions will be. However, they might include a stint of incarceration. I do not know when or for how long. As soon as I learn more, I’ll let you know.

I just wanted to give you the heads up, in case the incarceration forces me to miss some days of work. I’ll look into how that would be catalogued in LOLA.

I’m terribly embarrassed about the situation, and I apologize for any inconveniences this causes.

As stated, I will keep you updated on the process.

 

ugh, this is so disgusting.

 

as I told a friend, it would be one thing if this were done on purpose, if I had actively gotten into the car drunk.  but I didn’t.  I blacked out at home, with no intention of going anywhere that night.  and this happened after only two beers.  again, we’re thinking it was mixing the meds from my stomach virus with the alcohol.

and also as I told him, however, a DUI is a DUI, no matter the circumstances.

I have to get one of those interlocking devices for my car.  and in 30 days, my license will be suspended; not sure for how long, but some cases it can be up to a full year.

 

I’m not sure what’s upsetting me more — the fact that this happened again, or the fact that I might lose my job.  I can get over the car interlock, all the money I have to pay, the embarrassment with my family, etc.  I’m not even as terrified as going to prison as I probably should be.  the community service and classes I’ll have to take, I can get over that too.  it’s the fact that I’m dealing with this all over again, and that I might lose my job over it.  hell, I may lose my job over my rehab I’ll be doing anyway.

maybe it’s better this way.  this is the longest I’ve ever held a job.  maybe it’s time to move on.

I have a meeting in just over an hour with the rehab lady, Ms Alicia.  we’ll see what she has to say.

 

hey, for what it’s worth, I haven’t cut yet over this.  I think that’s largely due because Brian would never leave my side once he got me, lol.  but yeah, hadn’t cut yet.  I don’t expect that to last very long.  but at least this long is something.