Dropping the ball after a year+ clean

Postby slick_willy » Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:37 am

Hey guys, I haven't posted in a while but I quit smoking weed initially in around March of 2016 I think, and got to something like 14 months sober and I think I did see a bit of improvement, but honestly I had a huge boost in my mental well-being when I went on a light dose of Lexapro after 5 months sober. I finished school with a good GPA and am now working in a job I love, also moved out and making a good living so I am in a good spot as far as my life is concerned.

On the inside though is a totally different story. Lately I get off work and the first thing I think about is smoking up. I sort of started smoking a bit about 6 months ago when a girl I was dating was a weed smoker (which is not something I can have in my life or I will get tempted by it) so I ended up starting up again, on maybe a once a week basis if that even. I had a few months of no weed and then after getting this job, I seem to think about it a lot when I'm not working. I am wondering if maybe I need to fill my life with more positive things like going to concerts, reconnecting with old friends, and having cool fulfilling experiences, but I guess I have this habit of using chemicals to "enhance" my life experience. I do the same thing with caffeine and it has been the hardest drug for me to quit by far (way harder than weed) so like if I'm having an off day where I feel mentally useless, I always reach for some coffee to try to pep me back up, which sounds harmless on the surface but on a deeper level I think it translates to something like "I am not enough on my own, therefore I need a substance to be more complete." This might sound crazy but I believe it is the underlying motive that drives my caffeine use. I also binge eat from time to time, especially when I drink a lot of caffeine, because it feels uncomfortable (anxiety) and I try to use food to suppress the shitty emotions I get from being way too wound up after 5-7 coffees in the course of a day.

Anyways I am feeling way better on a day-to-day basis, I am still on a low-dose of Lexapro (10mg/day), and say what you want about antidepressants, but they ABSOLUTELY have helped the quality of my life, insofar as empowering me with having more options and ability to care for myself. I think what I want/need to do now is to let go of my relationship with coffee and with marijuana, and allow myself to just be as natural as possible, and see where my life ends up. This may also sound weird but I have this image in my head that without these substances, I will become a boring person and would never have anything to talk about, and as I type this that sounds ridiculous so I don't know what the hell is wrong with me. I think I need to toughen up and work for what I really want to get out of life, while also being kind to myself and not worrying too too much about it.

Sorry to talk about myself for the last million paragraphs but I want to dig my feet into the ground and say "no more." Any thoughts / advice would be welcome.

Peace and love to you all
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#1

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:39 am

When I read your post I see a person that can be proud to say that in spite of struggles with chemical dependence, you seem to lead a fairly balanced, healthy, functional life of purpose. You have healthy relationships, finished school, and have a career.

As for the chemicals, I think the science is biased and all over the place. You can find science pro and con regarding prescriptions, caffeine, or marijuana. People prove what they want to prove.

That said, we are not born dependent on chemicals. We are not born out of sorts, but somewhere along the way we begin introducing substances that screw with our natural levels of serotonin, etc. Once we get the system out of wack, it can be difficult to get back on track. For example, caffeine can reduce serotonin so you then need to balance it out with lexapro.
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#2

Postby quietvoice » Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:09 am

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:That said, we are not born dependent on chemicals. We are not born out of sorts, but somewhere along the way we begin introducing substances that screw with our natural levels of serotonin, etc. Once we get the system out of wack, it can be difficult to get back on track. For example, caffeine can reduce serotonin so you then need to balance it out with lexapro.

One could say, after learning and understanding about our species-specific diet (our species being a frugivore species), that we are poisoned as soon as cooked/processed foods are introduced into our body unwittingly by our caretakers.*

Once conditioned this way, we think that there is no other way to live. We grow up thinking that that is The Way. And because it's not The Way, and we don't know any better, we then find there are certain things that can be done such as ingesting substances that create a different feeling than the "normal" feelings that we have.

Stuck in this rut, now what . . . now, it takes courage to learn differently.


* In recent times, because we start out with the lymphatic system of our mother, and we've now had a few generations living on awful processed and chemical-laden foods, the babies born today have problems right out of the womb. It's sad, really.
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#3

Postby slick_willy » Wed Jul 11, 2018 9:53 pm

Thank you Richard and quietvoice. These days there are more pharmaceuticals and recreational drugs and chemically altered foods than ever before, so I guess it's on each one of us to make sure we are aware of what we are putting in our bodies. That being said, all these addications are chemical and often emotional (as most addictions are) and can be very hard to quit. I think I'm going to try replacing my unwanted habits with better ones. Thank you so much for your feedback
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#4

Postby quietvoice » Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:43 am

Peace and love to you, slick willy.
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#5

Postby George from UK » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:51 am

Hi Slick Willy

So one thing i can recommend is a 12 step program. Although i haven't started one myself yet i feel it's probably the number one thing to do for our diseased brains.

I don't think all the will power in the world can keep me sober forever if i look at my past history objectively

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