getting of the merry-go-ground of multiply quits

Postby reckoning » Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:04 am

I am 62 year old grandmother , and I have been trying for two decades to maintain a number of quits. Some longer than others. In the last twenty years the longest quit I have maintained was eight months.

Today is 40 days WITHOUT pot. I want this to be my final quit.

My pattern for getting back on usually goes like this. Something always happens in life ( and always will) and I think, heck , in the short term just having a smoke will help get me through. At least I’ll get a good nights sleep and I convince myself this won’t go on and on, and I just plain and simple ignore all my past quits which tell me otherwise.

Once I am back on I think I’ll only do this for today, or maybe , the week-end. Heck, next I tell myself I can still reign it in after a week . Next I tell myself I’ll just get through this rough patch, limit my use and I can control it.

I start limiting my activities so that I can fit a smoke in straight after work , or have to come home earlier than warrants. I go out less, agree to less social events because I really do not like being stoned around people who are not stoned. Most of the people I know my age are not pot smokers or can manage it just at parties. When smoking I exercise less, I eat more, read less. I don’t look fresh and many other things. The folk around me think I am pretty highly functioning and I feel like I lead a double life.

You may be wondering, really what sort of a problem could a grandmother have? I do interesting work , I have my family, I have a great network of friends and have a number of creative pursuits. Well when I smoke and the situation allows, I can smoke a joint every half hour when the supply is there, and it always is. I always use tobacco too. If I start a week-end with a morning smoke then I just go all day.

As the smoking continues, I really do not like myself for it, and I really want to stop, I feel guilty about it, I hide it, I lie about how much I use ( though the stash at home itself never lies) and then my days become more structured around it and I start working from home when I can , and smoke while I am writing submissions and working on other documents and really it is never my best work, yet I think I am doing fine . I think it’s a good way to focus.

Then the cycle always culminates in planning how to get out of this hole . The closer I get to a planned quit , the more I smoke, which sets me up for all the big withdrawals that have been spoken about here, which I fully relate to. I really suffer at each quit and have no intention of ever getting back on it.

In the last fifteen years I have been in a really committed relationship with a DAILY pot smoker too. This enabled me easy access to the stuff. It was always in the house. I never bought it, I am too ashamed to go to any dealer, would you believe it, that’s the level of guilt I have around it. I would never use the dark web either to order a delivery either. I never want to be the one to hand over the money for the stuff.

Over the past fifteen years I really wanted to believe that I could succeed in getting pot out of my life, even when it was central to the house I lived in and central to my relationship - it kind of grew to be one of the things we did together. It also made the relationship tolerable at those times when we really needed to be working through our emotional challenges . Smoking pot took the immediate tension away of tough times. I tired many times to get an agreement that our home could be a pot free zone, but this was a absolute non negotiable from my partners point of view. Rather it got locked away and then when I was pulled to breaking a quit there was little resistance to giving me access again.

I have made a really big decision and recently ended this relationship which really saddens and challenges me. I have a lot of grief. I have a lot of fear about my future. I’ve moved out of our house . I have a very tricky work project to manage at the moment. The negotiation around unravelling our house and finances is about to kick off and it will be filled with emotion. All the big things that could easily trigger me into the pattern I know well, are front and central right now.

I’ve been through the initial struggle of the quit period but I know there is more reckoning with myself, my anxiety, my life situation to come. I have been on this site many times over the past five years , as a guest, and used it for motivation and inspiration during various quits. I am encouraged by the community that has been built here and my decision today is to actively join you all by sharing and tracking my story. So many threads resonate with the many quits I have attempted.

I am here to get a handle on the maintenance side of quits. Maintenance of this quit is one of the deepest longings that I have in my life .

So as others here recommended let me celebrate and share with you my successes of the last 40 days because if these are not shared I am unlikely to see them for myself. I know being accountable to a community can be a strong way to keep the quit going.

My successes so far:

I am exercising, I am doing yoga. I eat well, but probably still too much.

I am dealing with my challenging work project more constructively though I can be caught off guard by PAWS which are very much a part of my experience. PAWS always catches me off guard.

I have moved into a share household where drugs and alcohol are not the norm. I'm living with younger people who do not do any drugs or alcohol. I am amazed at this experience . I am relieved at the supportive environment this provides .

I have more time to actually examine my anxiety fuelled ways of functioning and am starting to gain greater insight in how I deal with stuff.

I know there is a long way to go and I really appreciate that there is this platform where I can share and track my progress at the same time. I want this to be my final quit . I long to live an addiction free lifestyle. Thank-you to anyone who contributes to this site.

Any tips around maintenance gratefully received.

cheers
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#1

Postby cleanofgreen » Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:40 pm

Congrats of the 40 days its a nice chunk of time.

Regarding the maintenance of the quit, it been proven that its easier to quit a bad habit by taking up a new healthy habit instead. So maybe you could take up an old hobby that you discarded when your weed habit took over, or else find something new that interests you to put your energy into.

As you said, you usually start again when some crisis hits your life and that's going to happen to all of us every now and again so you had better have plan to use your new hobby/pastime/something as a crutch when in these situations.

Good luck and stay strong
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#2

Postby reckoning » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:04 pm

[quote="cleanofgreen"]Congrats of the 40 days its a nice chunk of time.

Thanks for the nice recogniton of the 40 days. You are right it's a nice chunck of time.

Thanks for the idea of PLANNING something new in my life. I agree , it is the way. In the past I have been so focused on the quit and managing all the withdrawals and getting healthy, exercising etc , eating good food and becoming present in my daily life and relationships and being there for family and friends that I don't really develop that plan that can replace the routine of weed being present in my life.

The quit in the past has been the plan. I have thought the main thing I have to overcome is managing all the anxiety, depression and emotional fall out that goes with all the quits. I have thought I can just keep doing what I am doing in life but BETTER.

I will start today to get a plan and give it the importance it deserves. Thanks for leading me to this thinking it's really helpful.
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#3

Postby asgoodasitgets » Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:45 am

@ Reckoning-

Hello, welcome, and thank you kindly for sharing your story. 40 Days? Awesome! :)

I am sorry to hear that your relationship ended, I know how hard that is having recently broken-up with my girlfriend. She was not a hardcore smoker like I was, in fact, she didn't really smoke but instead was just a proponent for legalization/decriminalization of cannabis. I can't imagine how difficult it would be to quit smoking and remain with a partner who still smoked constantly....talk about opposites attract ;)

Maintenance can definitely be tricky. I quit once for 3 years. It actually started as a break, but after I went through WD I swore weed off "forever." So three years go by and I forget all of the pain, drama, bs of withdrawing. I had tunnel vision. It was like romanticizing an abusive relationship. I forgot (or ignored) my memories of crying, feeling lost, not sleeping, all that sh**. And you know how this story ends, I ended up returning to weed with a vengeance.

One thing I didn't do that first time was to write on my emotions and experiences. I now truly believe this is absolutely paramount to my success and endurance. Like you, I started lurking here before I ever posted. I don't know what I would do without this forum, I'd probably sit @ home alone thinking I was the only person in the world with a serious "addiction" to weed. Or, I might think that there is no such thing, as many people swear that cannabis is benign and carries absolutely no chance of side-effects or withdrawal.

I welcome you, wish you luck, and look forward to reading on your progress! Please keep us posted! :)

-Alex
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#4

Postby reckoning » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:00 am

Hey Alex,

Your welcome is really appreciated. And yes I agree with you that getting stuff out of you into words and posted here makes a difference. When I wrote out my story, just for starters, it gave me insight into my pattern and how I actually thought about all these quits. Fully agree that getting back on, is very much like ignoring all the stuff that can happen in an abusive relationship.

Yep the ending of my relationship is hard , yet there is also relief there too. Not having to redefine myself everyday , even on the inside, that I am not a smoker anymore was really hard work.

Wow three years and then back on it. Hey but at least you know you can do it and you are doing it again and helping others like me to stay motivated.

For me this time I am definitely going to be introducing new things into my life and giving things a go that I have always wanted to do rather than completely focusing on the QUIT. I reckon having a place to 'give' to others in the form of support will be instrumental too.

No one I know gets how serious an addiction cannabis can be. They just think it's just a matter of stopping. I am really grateful to meet you and others here who experience otherwise.

I will keep posting my progress and share the things I need to change to maintain this QUIT and allow a new life to unfold for me. Sharing with you all will be a part of that too. I'm so glad to be part of it now instead of just lurking.

cheers
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#5

Postby Wave » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:20 am

reckoning wrote: No one I know gets how serious an addiction cannabis can be. They just think it's just a matter of stopping. I am really grateful to meet you and others here who experience otherwise.


This, 100%. Even my stoner friends that watched me struggle so much still use the line "yea I could quit tomorrow, just don't want to". There is not anything other than a drug I do all day everyday out of choice (I don't anymore, but in the past!).

If there is something I can relate to its trying and failing. I am almost at 13 months and this is not my longest quit to date. This quit has been different as associtate with now many people who use drugs anymore, and that helps so much.

Taken up different hobbies and being active help loads. Any type of cardio helps so much!!

Like you say, being able to function on it is possible but actually looking back, is far harder and massive parts of your life are just sitting around blazing, which is not fun. Being with people and being active is so much more interesting!!
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#6

Postby reckoning » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:43 am

Hey Wave,

Thanks for replying. I've been following you a lot so very excited to actually have an exchange with you.

I agree even if you think you are holding a good life together, and being reasonable active when smoking, it doesn't seem that way once you have stopped. It's good to be able to say that to someone who knows that to be the case. I can see how much smoking weed has inhibited me going where I really want to go. Weed made me risk adverse . Weed made me feel as if I could not possibly tolerate the emotions and anxiety needed to make the changes I needed to make in my life . Weed actually made my life harder not easier .

Besides it really is hard work trying to fit smoking weed in , and pretend ( for me I did this alot) that it really wasn't a big part of my life.

I have always found that people who are smoking when you are not always say Yeh I can do without it BUT they don't.

Went to the gym and did yoga as well today. Took kids to the pool too. Day 41 was a pleasant day. Topped of by coming home to this kind of sharing. sweet relief.

Thanks for being here on this forum.

cheers
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#7

Postby Wave » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:53 am

Aw thanks so much for the kind word!!! This forum has helped me so much and love looking back at my story and other people who quit when I did, before I quit and always pop back to remind myself why not smoking/vaping is so important.

Well done with both exercise and keeping busy. In some weird way weed really helped me keep myself together when I was going through a really tough time (almost died in a road accident) and weed and other drugs helped me process this. I achieved the top grade in my country for a difficult University degree. That said, the last 3-4 years of smoking really got in the way of my life goals.

Looking back, I could have done so much more and hated the hiding it from everyone. I love how I don't use any drug anymore (including alcohol) and feel finally free.

You sound like you have the right mindset for this and be excited for the change. It does get easier and use the down days to remind why you need to be done with this. Any substance that can make your feel that down is not worth putting into your body!!
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#8

Postby reckoning » Sun Feb 11, 2018 6:00 pm

Thanks Wave, yes I think mindset is important too. I am getting into the swing of being an actual participant on this site and learning how to encourage myself and others which I can see will help me maintain this quit.

Just reading about the 'freedom' it brings to others lives is great. I want that feeling. I have that feeling now even at 42 days this quit . Yes maintaining a quit is the road to never locking myself in that self imposed prison again.

My goal is to keep recognising the freedom that giving up weed brings. After all once in your sixties, as I am , you definitely know that no matter how long you live it will not be as long you have lived. And that amount of time feels short.

And thanks for reminding me to be excited for the change. It's so easy to undermine my own efforts and get down on myself for having wasted years.

Maintaining a quit is like being an activist in your own life and investing in 'freedom'. Wow you know if I said that to anyone in my circle of people , I know they would think I was being really over the top, yet that is really what it feels like.
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#9

Postby Wave » Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:04 pm

How you getting on? Hope your hanging in there!
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#10

Postby reckoning » Sun Feb 18, 2018 11:42 am

Hi Wave,

Thanks so very much for checking in on me. I am going good. Doing lots of things that I know keep me connected and present in my life. Bush walking this week-end, though in my part of the world it was pretty hot and humid.

What I am working on to keep investing in my 'ticket to freedom' ( changing my language around using the word QUIT- the Q word is loaded with on again off again for me) is seeing the things I do to support me as 'treats' rather than what I have to do to be OK without weed. It was a treat filled week-end. Weed free .

About two years ago I took weaving baskets using raffia and other natural fibres and I love it. It's pretty soothing and really helps with anxiety. Now thinking about how to get a group together that is around weaving , older women and addictions. Umm see how I go with that. Just discovering this idea as the days chug along . I am at Day 48 now.

I will also do what you have done for me today and pick a couple of folk to check-in on as it's so good to know that someone out there cares. Thanks Wave I really appreciate the check-in.
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#11

Postby asgoodasitgets » Mon Feb 19, 2018 7:20 am

Happy Day almost 49? Regardless, I wanted to thread-bomb you and say hello. I hope you are doing well. Hey, is "bush-walking" an Australian term for hiking? Just wondering, I love the way it sounds, absolutely charming (silly American). You don't have to answer if you don't want to disclose info, I've just heard that phrase here and there a few times and I believe it is also referenced in one of the helpful "Quit Weed" PDF's that I downloaded from someones signature here.

Hope all is well! :)

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#12

Postby reckoning » Tue Feb 20, 2018 9:27 pm

Hi Alex, you picked the part of the world I hail from. It's Day 51 now! Some days remain challenging re the emotions but definitely getting better. This week I am working on the reactivity. Any decision I have to make I am making it then doing nothing about it for 48hrs. This is a good step for me and one I need more practice on. For example yesterday I wrote out my job resignation and did not send it. Today I am so pleased about that. Still under review but yes the 48hr delay button I think will help me from jumping into impulsive commitments and taking action on immediate thoughts too.
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#13

Postby Wave » Tue Feb 20, 2018 10:02 pm

reckoning wrote:For example yesterday I wrote out my job resignation and did not send it. Today I am so pleased about that. Still under review but yes the 48hr delay button I think will help me from jumping into impulsive commitments and taking action on immediate thoughts too.


Good job. What I have learnt from previous and this quit is the impulsive nature of wanting to over-react and carry out "knee jerk" actions. Its the same when you blow up in a massive rage or end up in an argument, just take a step back and actually think about the issue, sometimes it is something very small.

Did you want to quit your job before quitting weed?
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#14

Postby reckoning » Fri Feb 23, 2018 5:12 am

Good question Wave. No at that time of still smoking I was kidding myself that I could make the project work and in part it was still on track then. A mutiny occurred while I was away on hols over Xmas. With the quit, after the New Year, I can see more clearly what is going on and that in fact I alone cannot change it. So it was possibly always coming this consideration of resigning. What the quit does it makes me focus more on what I want in my life generally and it certainly is not all the uncertainly and a lot of responsibility without adequate supports in this short term project.

So the tricky thing now is to resign when the time is right for me and as you say without the knee jerk reaction and making sure that I am not overreacting. So I know its getting closer but now will work on staying calm and preparing for the big meeting. That will be a challenge as I know I will get very emotional so will prepare and practice ways of stopping those knees of mine from jerking!
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