Tag Archives: detox

Never goin’ back to detoxing…

20 Aug

3:40 pm

A short post:

I fell off the wagon twice after 60 days of being sober and man, it sucked. But, it was quite anticlimactic in a way — same blackout, same hangover, same feeling like a piece of shit. BUT, I realized two things:

1. I will never again have to detox and go through withdrawal — both physical and emotional — or cravings like I did during the first 3 to 5 weeks of being sober. That was hard, and for the most part, I was sick, had intense cravings, and felt very, very lonely. BUT, I will NEVER have to go through that again! Sure, I drank last week and did and said some stupid things and spent two days hung over, but…no one and nothing can subtract my 60 days. So, it’s not at all like I’m starting over. I’m simply starting again continuing to build on my stronger body and mind.

2. I like being sober. I like the consistency and the predictability of it. Last night I had zero desire or inclination to drink; we had people over, and I even drank WATER as I was talking to them.

It’s funny, but I used to be a total dork, didn’t drink at all until college, and used to go to frat parties and pour my beers in the garbage cans when no one was looking. (I hated beer.) Then I went to France and discovered wine (and that I had a binge eating disorder), but that’s another story. Point is, I used to hate my old, goody-goody self, the “mold” that I was cast — and trapped, suffocating — in by my family, my small town, my siblings, my friends. (Myself, too, but I felt like a victim.) Which, I’m pretty sure, is one of the many reasons I started and continued for so long to “party” and binge drink, just to prove to everyone how “cool” I actually was.

Now, though, there is nothing to prove and maybe sober IS the new black. At the end of the day, being drunk is a prison, not an escape; learning that there is and never was anything to escape from — I can simply leave, say no, or change my perspective and/or reaction — is key to me staying sober and embracing living sober, or rather, LIFE. Time to be that dork again. ūüėČ

Island life, part 2

24 Jul

11:01 am

Well, another gorgeous day in the islands. Yup, I could move down here. It’s 10 am (I slept late), my boyfriend’s off to work, and it’s just me — and at LEAST six open, unfinished bottles of red. Sigh. We’re house-sitting at this amazing pad that overlooks several cays over the north side of the island. There are palm trees, all sorts of plants and flowers filling the space around; a hot, humid stank to the air that I love; boats passing on the blue-green water down below; a pool, a hot tub, all sorts of “adult” toys like, cable tv; three cute dogs to keep me company if I go out for walks or do some yoga inside the house (they love getting on the floor with me, they think it’s roll-around-on-the-floor time). It’s a paradise and I can only say, fuck yes, I get to see it at 6 weeks sober!

Yes, today marks 6 weeks. I’m not sure if it feels all that much different, to me anyway. I have lost a few “wine gut” pounds, which is a welcome side effect. However, that could also be due to having been sick — or maybe just in “mini-detox” — for the past, well, 6 weeks, and not being able to keep much food down (TMI, but it’s true; this drinking thing really affected my GI tract, I think). Maybe my insulin mechanics and metabolism are changed, for the better, since stopping drinking. I don’t know, but I like it. Plus, I’ve had a few people tell me that I’m “glowing;” honestly, though, I wonder if that’s (was) just the hot yoga doing the trick.

Overall, I feel calmer. Or, calm. Ha! That’s just…weird, for me. I’m sleeping better, feeling better when I wake, and generally speaking, glad to not be sick and hung in the mornings, able to read and write and get some work done in the afternoons, and up for running and/or walking in the evenings. It’s all rather…spectacularly normal! I guess.

Yet…

I’d love a cocktail right now. A glass of chilled red or white. I’d love to finish off the one or two bottles that look young enough to drink, and then uncork another. When I think about it, it’s not that my body wants it so much as my mind. I could even do without the drunk feeling, you know? I could do without the drunk feeling but would love to like, dunk my entire brain in the booze and activate all those circuits that made me feel, well, BETTER — excited, happy, alive — when I was drunk. The burning feeling in my belly, the drunk part, the blackout part (duh), I could do without. But the essence of wine…ahh…I could definitely pour it all over my body, every pore…

Gah, the cravings never go away, do they? Time to watch me some Intervention, or simply, turn on the news…

Sometimes I think, what wouldn’t I be capable of blacked out? Like, could the Aurora (CO) killer have been simply blacked out drunk? Can you imagine waking up from having done that, and realizing that you DID THAT? Killed a bunch of people in a theater? I’m sort of looking forward to hearing him talk; to finding out exactly what set him off, if he’s messed up in the head, or if, really, he was simply on something. Like booze. He sounds messed up, but still, the shit you are capable of doing while drunk is astounding. Scary as fuck.

How do I continue to resist my cravings, after the sun and sand and ridiculously nice life I get to lead, at least for the next few weeks? I think about — remember very clearly, actually — all the shit I’ve done blacked out.

Which begins my next series of posts: shit I’ve done while blacked out that one, I never ever want to repeat, and two, could actually be harbingers of worse to come, if I drink again. And I shudder to think about this, in a melodramatic sort of way, cuz really, worse COULD happen — my blackouts just kept getting more classic and much worse. Nothing seemed to get me to stop drinking. And what’s worse than sitting in a jail cell, breaking your arm, crashing a car while driving blacked out, getting fired from your job for going batshit on your CEO at your Christmas party? Nearly breaking your face after falling headfirst onto something REALLY hard in an outhouse? Sometimes I wonder, what is my “bottom?” Dying? Killing someone else? At 6 weeks sober, it’s thoughts like these, that while dark and the opposite of the hot, sunny day outside, I NEED to keep up close, in focus, right behind my eyes. It sucks, and sounds slightly ridiculous to dwell so hardcore on what many people have experienced (to some degree), but for me, there really is a fine line between “oh, just one” and a nightmare to relive the next day…

Drunky drunk girl says, I made it 30 days, what?!

12 Jul

5:46 pm

Yup, 30 days as of today. And no intention of going back to drinkin’ or letting up my vigilance.

I am, however, getting REAL tired of being tired. WTF? I think I’m ill, but I’m not sure if it’s general fatigue (am I officially getting “old?”), a flu, or long-range detox. I just want to feel better, and not have to crash out for several hours after a 90-minute yoga class or a 60-minute jog in the park. Jesus. Good thing I’m not working; in fact, I can’t imagine having the energy to work at the moment. Durr.

Speaking of which, I’ve worked my ass off for almost the past 25 years of my life, 15+ of which were, like, grueling. I helped start one, two, three, four companies; I worked in Silicon Valley for a total of, let’s see, six or something years, making anywhere from a 75-minute to three-fucking-hour commute ONE WAY every day by car or train; I went back to grad school at Columbia for journalism. Shit, no wonder I’m tired, no wonder I don’t want to work, and you know what, fuck that, I HAVE DONE SOME SHIT in my life so why am I beating myself up? Why am I making it seem, in my head and on my blog, that I haven’t?

I realized, for the umpteenth time today during my bikram yoga class, that I am WAY too hard on myself. I judge myself to a ridiculous degree, getting down on this and that, comparing myself to others all too often. We all do, but instead of droplets of comparing-self-judgment-type-thoughts, or a stream, mine can basically be represented by an ocean: my brain is literally submerged in a bath of self-criticism. For instance, I have slightly hunched shoulders. I have had this ever since I was in high school due to, what the fuck else, hunching over all the time studying! I’m not joking. My mother would watch me, day in and day out, study from about 9 at night after I got home from school (yes, I was THAT student who also had to be in the band, the play, all the sports, etc. etc. etc.) until 2 in the morning; often, she’d come over and peel my shoulders and chest back, up off my books and papers, straightening them out with effort as if they had been compressed by one of those machines that flatten junkyard cars. I didn’t think much of it at the time, but later on, I saw the effects: permanently hunched shoulders that have taken years to start to correct (one of the reasons I do things like bikram yoga and other spine-strengthening activities). Still, they’re not like most people’s, so when I look around the room at others doing this one particular asana where we have to reach our arms up and clasp hands, pointing them toward the ceiling as we hold our hands in prayer, I am constantly demoralized. Why? Because it feels and looks so much harder for me. Yet, must I beat myself up? No. But I do.

We all do this, but I realize that part of my “issue” with drinking is that I am very hard on myself when it comes to anything and everything involving goals — quitting drinking ABSOLUTELY has not been easy to accept, as I know myself and how I react to goals. BUT, at the same time, I don’t see any other way to get sober at the moment, and that is the overriding goal. So, today, on my 30th day of sobriety, I am content. Not happy, since HELLS YES, I’d love to be drinking to my sobriety with a chilled glass of red instead of ruminating on all this shit; but, CONTENT. And that feels better than the up (and eventual down) of “happy.” Cheers (I’m lifting my seltzer with a twist of lime) to me!

Water is my friend!

11 Jul

12:28 am

Water

Who would have thought a tall glass of lime seltzer water would taste SO DAMN GOOD? I thought about getting a nonalcoholic beer tonight on the way back from a tough bikram yoga class, but by the time I got home, all I wanted was water. Gallons of it. WA-TER. (Plus, wouldn’t that be cheating? I actually dreamt I had a sip of a beer the other morning; one sip. SO. GOOD. I can still feel the bitter taste on my tongue.)

So, today is day 28 = four weeks! Wow. I have had a LOT of insights come to mind, but I’ll wait for another night to post those, since I’m falling asleep. I must say, however, that the cravings are almost nonexistent. I mean, I have them now and then — and the accompanying disappointment and mental tantrum — but WAY less than before. It’s like, I’ve accepted, even possibly embraced, a non-drinking lifestyle. A new habit. (Wait till I get off my exhaust-myself-beyond-belief schedule in the next few weeks, and we’ll see if I come crying to mama…)

I’ve been sick for the past, who knows, month or more? Tired/dragging (walking is tiring), with flu symptoms. I can’t help but wonder: is it that my immune system needs to simply bounce back from the years and years and hangovers and hangovers during which it was on overdrive? Like, I wore it out and now my body, no longer protected by an immune system working on overdrive to process all the booze and related metabolic toxins, is like, Wow, fuck you, dude. OR, I’ve thought that perhaps, as in a fast, when your body supposedly clears out the toxins once you give it a digestive break long enough to do so, I’m going through all the illnesses that I never got while I was drinking? My body is finally at baseline, and with all my sweating at bikram, it’s finally processing all those toxins that never got the chance to come out? I think it’s a combination of both, actually. In any case, it’s a boon: combined with making sure I make up a LONG to-do list every day and actually get out and exhaust myself trying to get everything done (mind you, my lists these days, as an “unemployed” person, include getting out of bed), I really have no time or energy to crave a glass or fourteen of red, let alone drink them.

Additionally, I can’t imagine pouring that acidic shit down my throat at this particular moment. I feel sick, and I KNOW that drinking will make me feel sicker. And a hangover? Ugh. Sounds intolerable. I’ve come enough to my senses to realize that when I have stomach cramps and a slight fever, drinking red wine will NOT MAKE IT BETTER.

Before I sign off, I was thinking last night: what’ll happen if I drink? I’m not expecting to black out and go on a murder spree, but… Will I feel less drunk? More drunk? Get drunk faster? Black out? Stay sane? It scared me a little to think about drinking. Which, to be honest, is a good thing in these early days. One more incentive to Just Say No! (More on that in another post, methinks.)

Choosing not to drink is a luxury

24 Jun

11:58 pm

Yes, it is.¬† And, it’s only become apparent, after almost two weeks (no, I can’t believe it either), that I have a choice!¬† Like my counselor was trying to tell me a few months ago, You don’t HAVE to drink.¬† I knew what she meant.¬† Toward the end (the past year or so), drinking has felt almost mandatory, DESPITE feeling sick and hung over and depressed.¬† It was like, I approached getting drunk yet another night with something like dread, a whiney feeling in my gut that was crying out, No!¬† No more!¬† Yet, I forced myself to indulge, because…I guess I either felt like I had to drink or the cravings made me fear that I had to.

It was eye opening the other day when I came to that juncture like I do every day, craving a drink and wondering how to move forward, which way to go.¬† This time, I sat down.¬† I SAT DOWN there, on that figurative path, and looked around.¬† I weighed my options — to drink or not to drink — and even though I felt a craving to drink, I chose not to.¬† For various reasons, one being that I didn’t want to break my sober stretch yet again, another that I didn’t want to get drunk and then get drunker and then wake up feeling like complete ass.¬† So I chose to not drink.¬† Of course, I still wanted to, so I fought through the cravings.¬† But, I chose!¬† And I get to choose every single night, day, minute, second.¬† I GET TO choose.¬† That’s pretty amazing.¬† And not something I’m used to relying on, since for so long I actually didn’t have the choice, whether it was due to a physical or psychological (usually this) need to drink.¬† I still believe I have a strong psychological DESIRE, but I no longer believe it’s a need.¬† I don’t think it ever was, but I could be wrong.

I haven’t felt much like talking about all the bad shit, but soon, I must (Yoda says).¬† I know I can’t ride this detox/Hey, I’m sober! buzz for much longer.¬† Ugh.¬† The past few nights I’ve been fighting off the cravings by remembering the shit that went down, the belligerence, the blackouts.¬† If there’s one thing that helps me to not start drinking, I’ve found, it’s recollecting the horrific nightmares — hell, actually — that I’ve put myself and others through while blacked out.¬† It’s crushing, literally.¬† I have had to lie down and hold my head, that’s how heavy, how weighed down my brain feels when I go there.

I’ve also been dwelling on the write-off’s, the people who have dissed and ditched, judged and walked away.¬† I’d like to be able to say, Yup, all y’all can go fuck yourselves for not seeing the obvious pain I was in, the fear that translated to anxiety and anger.¬† Yup, all y’all can go fuck yourselves for not helping me, for not believing in me, for making it seem that I was shirking my responsibilities.¬† Maybe the reason I drank was not because I never HAD them, but because I had too many, for too long.¬† Then, I take a deep breath and try to empathize by putting myself on the receiving end of some of my blackouts.¬† And remembering, not everyone is a jerk, an asshole, sans empathy.¬† There ARE people who have cared, who have supported me through this, who have done things that no “normal” friend should have had to do.¬† I let it go.

Anyway, I’ll delve into all that soon enough.¬† And I’m sure it’ll be cathartic.¬† But for now, I just want to turn it off, shut it down, and fall asleep.¬† Sober, of course.¬† (12 days!)

Mornings aren’t easy, grumbles Drunky drunk girl

24 Jun

10:37 am

I can’t wake up in the mornings.¬† Why?¬† Because I have MAJOR INSOMNIA.¬† Probably not unusual, or interesting, but true.¬† I can’t believe how cliche my detox is!

I am so tired of not being able to sleep, though.¬† It’s exhausting, not being able to sleep!¬† I’m actually coming to dread the hours I have to lie in bed, feeling manic and wanting to get up, wondering how the FUCK long I have to lie there, waiting.¬† And, of course, all the while I’m thinking.¬† Last night it was about the cosmos, the planets and solar system and galaxy and galaxies beyond ours; then it was about human evolution.¬† (Luckily, I had a friend keep me company on the phone, discussing the minute details until he hung up and I remained there, on my back, for at least another few hours, bright-eyed and definitely NOT bushy-tailed.)¬† In fact, I’m starting to develop a dread, a phobia, almost, of going to bed.¬† And, of waking up, since I can’t remember the last time I slept for longer than 2-4 hours in total.

I also wake up every morning feeling hung over.¬† Sick to my stomach.¬† Flu-ish.¬† And tired, so tired.¬† Like, can’t peel my eyes open and can’t manage to hurl my body up and out of the bed without some superhuman force of will.¬† Like, still in detox!¬† Worse, actually, since there’s no accountable reason for feeling as shitty as I do except detox, which I should be WELL out of, going on day 12, right?

But it’s summer, I’m in [cold east coast city], I’ve got limited time in [cold east coast city], I want to start working like I used to work, I really do want to try running or doing yoga in the early mornings (so far that would be me – 0, insomnia/detox – 12); so, I ignore it and move on.¬† (Maybe I’m just tired for other reasons, like, it’s hot, I’m working out a lot more, I’ve got some major decisions on my plate and have been mentally exhausting myself trying to make them.¬† Hmm.¬† Maybe getting sober is simply tiring?)

WHEN DOES IT START TO FEEL GOOD AGAIN, DAMN IT?

Oh, well.¬† At least the nights are getting easier, resisting the cravings, that is.¬† Last night’s (Or was it the night before?¬† The good thing about feeling too tired at night the past few nights is that I have also been too tired to drink!) big revelation was, I have a choice.¬† Yes, I have the CHOICE to drink or to not drink.¬† I don’t HAVE to drink.¬† More on that in a different post.

Drunky drunk girl says, Woo frickin’ hoo, I’m sober

22 Jun

1:45 am

I don’t feel like writing tonight, and I think it’s a combination of being HOT (my apartment is stifling hot and I’m afraid to turn my A/C unit back on because it’s leaking all over the outside of the building) and I’m tired. ¬†Bored. ¬†Restless. ¬†I just spent a few minutes discussing my “lack of craving” tonight on the phone, and why it’s so great, and now all I want to do is drink. ¬†Sigh.

Still, the reality is clearer than ever, and maybe that’s what’s making it easier to simply say, Fuck it, why bother? ¬†The reality is that being drunk is not significantly different or better than being sober, at least not anymore. ¬†It’s not different (i.e., better) ENOUGH to be bothered with, and definitely not better enough to break my winning streak of almost 10 days sober. ¬†It stinks of effort, as one of my friends would say. ¬†And that’s simply depressing. ¬†Might as well throw in the towel and go to bed.

Throw in the towel? ¬†I mean, I had a very productive day but yet, I don’t feel like I did enough. ¬†Or, I feel like my enforced (literally) “me” time wasn’t necessary, or was a waste. ¬†That’s the thing I’m trying to change, though, the idea that I can’t do anything fun, or easy, during the day. ¬†It’s what drove me to drink in the first place. ¬†I realize that I HAVE to turn it off, close the laptop, put down the book, stop the working out and just…chill. ¬†Balance — it’s absolutely necessary in that without it, I get frustrated, overwhelmed, and desperate to shut down with a glass or six of red wine. ¬†I need to remember that I don’t have to work 24 hours a day, I can take time to play.

Sigh. ¬†Good thing I’m tired, otherwise I’d probably stay up and feel depressed, my mind numb, my body lethargic, and say, Eh, why not? ¬†It’s just grapes…

Wake up!

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