CWhalley

LifeRing Recovery

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LifeRing Recovery: a self-help alternative for recovery from alcoholism and other chemical dependency. Group support for abstinence from alcohol and “drugs” by empowering the sober self within you. Completely secular: no prayers, Higher Powers or Steps.

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Going Forward (with clarity)   Sobriety/Recovery Journals

Started 2/16/14 by Elsie (Elsiek); 41073 views.
Brian (BrianB125)

From: Brian (BrianB125)

Sep-29

Spunky,

Stopping drinking is hard, there is just no getting around that.  But many of us here had done it, and if we can do it, so can you.  First tries don't always work.  One thing you could do is go to a doctor, there are things they can give you that make stopping easier.  And if you can find a recovery group, that can help too - being around other people who are trying to stop is a big help.  What you have to do is just keep trying.  I'm hoping for the best for you.

Brian

Elsie (Elsiek)

From: Elsie (Elsiek)

Sep-30

Hi there spunkyblue

It is I'm afraid the nature of the beast. But the fact that you are even checking into a sobriety support group is a sign that on some level you want to stop. Therefore you have something to build on.  It took me quite a while from knowing I needed to sort it to actually staying stopped, but i made incremental progress which built me up for the final push.  

I really recommend Martin Nicolaus's book, 'Empowering Your Sober Self'. I found it really did give me some confidence that getting sober was actually possible. AA didn't suit me- I needed to believe I could do it by my own efforts without the inconvenience of having to drop everything and 'get to a meeting' which is more or less how AA works- and it does work for some people. But I had responsibilities that I couldn't just drop at a moment's notice. When using AA I would panic when I couldn't go to a meeting- then I realised I could stay calm and the craving would pass. But as Brian says meetings can also be very helpful.

The key to beating an addiction is somehow to stop putting the stuff in our bodies, which is apparently very simple but for some of us a complex rearrangement of our mindset - at least it was for me. Some people seem to 'just stop' but for most of us a few relapses are par for the course before we manage it- certainly they were for me, as I managed to finally and truly accept I was absolutely entrenched in a vicious circle that I absolutely had to break. I ate SO MUCH chocolate during the first few months of finally getting sober- but amazingly didn't put on weight. My theory was that my body was so used to getting its calories from wine that it took time for me to adjust to getting them from food instead. I also read everything I could lay my hands on to do with addiction and alcohol dependency - in fact I read addictively ( with chocolate by my side) Anything to keep yourself occupied, and my advice is don't feel you have to immediately catch up on all the sensible yet dull things you've been avoiding whilst drinking. Do nice things, even lazy things, trashy tv, daytime naps whatever it takes to not drink. There's a lifetime to catch up with your admin.

We have all been where you are- think of it as absolute evidence that you have to break the cycle. And the cravings you get are yet more evidence-  so hard as they may feel  bizarrely I found they actually shored up my resolve. It can feel like a bit of a white knuckle ride at the start, but it will definitely get easier.

Good luck, truly you can do this. 

Elsie xx

In reply toRe: msg 960
Elsie (Elsiek)

From: Elsie (Elsiek)

Jan-19

Hi everyone, I'm still here and still sober! It has really got quite easy of late, absolutely a baseline reality of how I live to the extent that I don't think about it much. 

Before Christmas my oldest and closest friend rang to tell me she has been diagnosed with bilateral breast cancer. Devastating news, but she is under the care of an internationally renowned specialist cancer hospital- The Christie in Manchester. I am very worried about her nonetheless  but she said to me she needs me not to get upset, and i'm being as positive and supportive as I can be. It does however throw my own life into perspective. Stopping drinking was a huge mountain to climb at the time and for some years afterwards, but I feel very fortunate to have managed it, and extremely fortunate to have avoided serious health consequences from my years of heavy drinking.  Not that my friend's illness is drink related. but I would be lying if I didn't admit I'm profoundly grateful to not have to go through what she is embarking on.  We are making headway towards building our new house, a process I do not relish and sometimes dread but really and truly it now seems, relatively speaking, a breeze, even a privilege that this is my biggest issue. 

I am thinking again about the possibility of starting a group. the advice is that you should be at least six months sober to consider it- there was no way on earth that I felt ready that early in my sobriety, although I guess everyone is different. Now I am wondering is six years is too long?!!! I certainly feel I could now firmly guarantee I'm not going to be in relapse territory which seems pretty important to me for facilitating a meeting.  I know at AA the thinking is you are never ever out of the woods.  What do people feel here? 

A bit late to wish you all Happy New Year but Happy New Year anyway! 

Love, Elsie

MaryLouise3

From: MaryLouise3

Jan-20

Hi again

I think a new group would be amazing -- E why not contact Craig Whalley and ask him for suggestions and support? On the mailing list we have a number of UK-based sober posters, lovely people and I'm sure you would get a positive response to any  new group.

Where will the new house be (not detailed location of course)? -- at the sea,  in the same village, in the countryside? It is daunting and I'm sure you  will have many ups and downs but  at the same time it is a really exciting project.

Sympathy to your friend -- cancer is such a medical ordeal, horrible treatments and uncertainty. This last week I heard from an old friend who was at varsity with me, a friend not ex-boyfriend and he was sad we had lost touch -- he has been through  a painful divorce, his daughter has had some kind of breakdown, he has had a number of operations and TIAs, then had to recover from a serious car accident. His memory is poor, he struggles to walk, his career  floundered -- I realised that because he had emigrated to the Antipodes, I assumed his life would be so much safer and  more comfortable than our lives here in South Africa. I'd hardly given him a thought. Now he writes to say how homesick he has been, how he longs to be able to come home again. But the country he recalls is long gone, it is a different and far more challenging society. Pleasant upmarket spaces and gorgeous surroundings for a touristy holiday, but not easy to live here.

Happy 2020 to both of us

love as ever

xMary

Elsie (Elsiek)

From: Elsie (Elsiek)

Jan-21

Hi Mary

The house will be on our plot- we got planning permission to split it.  so we will continue to live here whilst it is built, then sell this place to pay off the loan.  it's probably the financial side that makes me most nervous. But also the safety and wellbeing of our cats (the chickens and dog will be fine.) The house will be built to passivhaus standard, although we won't go for full certification because that is apparently a total pain, causing problems with things like cat flaps! At the moment we are having replastering work done in the cottage. Can't wait till its finished and I can get back to normal and get rid of all the dust. 

How sad for your old friend. I think as we all get older it gets more not less difficult to bounce back as the sense that life is long enough to reinvent ourselves and seek a newer world seems to contract. And it sounds like the idea of a lost home is particularly hard in South Africa. We all go back to our home town half expecting it to caught in a timewarp.  I only live 10 miles from where I spent most of my childhood and I still expect it to be full of bikers with long hair and leather jackets...  Of course it isn't. But my home town was never and still isn't anything to get excited about. 

I will get in touch with Craig. We do not have any meetings in our town for recovery support. There was an AA group when I moved here but that has long since folded. Interesting that I had clocked that long before I acknowledged I had a problem that I needed to tackle.

E xx

Danny2333

From: Danny2333

Jan-22

Go for it! Good luck on your journey.

Danny

MaryLouise3

From: MaryLouise3

Jan-24

Hi E

The building project sounds amazing. Daunting but amazing.

If there is no recovery support at all in your town, I'm sure a meeting would be really welcome. Let me know what Craig thinks and you can probably find other UK LifeRing people around with experience.

After some horrendous heatwave weather, we had unseasonable rain and it now feels like autumn. My rosemary is flowering blue and we still have two or three months of summer to go!

More later

xMary

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