Tag Archives: Withdrawals

The Story So Far – Chapter 10 – Withdrawals

CHAPTER 10 – WITHDRAWALS

The only downer of that Easter Sunday 8th April 2012 was the onset of the headaches.  I thought in terms of the drinking everything was going so well, I understood that coming off alcohol dependency there were the withdrawals to deal with.  I thought they would hit almost immediately, I had researched alcoholism and found that it wasn’t always the case, in some cases there were none and in other they can emerge weeks later.  The body becomes so dependent on alcohol, that in some cases the body can go into shutdown if alcohol consumption is stopped, in extreme cases even leading to death, but in almost all cases there were withdrawal symptoms.  So now the headaches began to appear.

I’m not one to suffer from headaches or migraines, if I did get them they were quite mild and usually a couple of paracetamol and they were gone.  At work I had been taking in packs of bottled water, I was drinking plenty of fluids, but that didn’t stop them, paracetamol didn’t help either, I just kept getting headaches and I couldn’t get rid of them.

Over the coming weeks the headaches got worse and worse, more frequent and more painful.  Slowly though the pain spread, firstly into my back, then to my kidney’s and slowly around the body.  As April moved on I seemed to record each night in my journal how bad the pain was getting, how I was beginning to lose my mind because of it, the pain was getting to me and I was beginning to fall apart.

The worst day can on Sunday 22nd April, I remember sitting in Church, in constant pain, I could hardly move because it hurt so much to move, but I couldn’t sit still either because it hurt to keep still, I couldn’t fight it anymore.  Many people came by and prayed with me, prayed for my pain to go away and I just sat there fighting the tears, that was until I spoke with Gareth and at that point I couldn’t hold them in anymore.  By this time I was struggling, really struggling.

The next night it had been a long day at work, with a combination of paracetamol and ibruprofen I somehow got through the day.  When I got home I found myself lying on the settee in the dark, alone.  The pain was breaking through way beyond all the painkillers I had taken, they had taken the edge off all day, but not really taken the pain away, now it seemed even worse and I felt so alone, really so alone.

At this point I knew that my body was screaming for alcohol, my mind was telling me all I had to do was to give in and take a drink and it would all go away.  I don’t remember where the rest of the family were, they were all in the house, but just in separate rooms, I was laid alone, in the dark, in a world of pain.

I didn’t want to drink, but I knew this would all go away if I did, I was fighting it, but I was not doing very well.  But as the evening went on I had this feeling that I wasn’t to do this alone, I prayed and once again I felt I was being told not to do this on my own.  I didn’t really know who to reach out to though, so I grabbed my phone and sent a text to James, simply saying how I was struggling and I needed help.

Instantly as soon as I pressed send the struggle ended, a peace fell and the pain began to slowly subside, it didn’t go away, but it became manageable, the urge to treat the beast with what it was craving for was over, the gloom lifted.  James was in a meeting when I sent the text, but he responded as soon as he could asking how I was doing and if he could help, I replied by telling him how much just sending the text had already helped me so much and I was feeling much better, I was still in pain, but I had it under control.  I was so thankful for James in those hard weeks, he would text me so often, asking how I was and being so supportive, I always felt so encouraged when I got a text from him.

The next morning I was back at the Doctors for more tests.  I told him about the pain I was in, he attributed it to the withdrawals and prescribed me Co-codamol for the pain.  I understood that this painkiller was an opiate derivative and that these too could be highly addictive, I didn’t want to replace one addiction by treating it with another, I guess I was slightly surprised to be given these, but I guess that most painkillers can be addictive.  I decided that I would only take these when I really needed them, I wasn’t going to rely on them, only when the pain was unmanageable.  But actually by the time I was prescribed these I had suffered the worst of the pain, it was actually getting a little easier each day.  I had a prescription for thirty tablets, but in the end I only took about a dozen, the rest sat in my cupboard until I ditched them.

Over the next couple of weeks all the pain had gone.  By mid May I was feeling pretty good, all the pain was gone, I was happy and I was well.  After weeks of various blood tests and blood pressure checks at the Doctor’s, my blood pressure had returned back to normal levels and my liver results were back to normal too.  My early tests had come back with anomalies, the Doctor expected this given what I had told him about my drinking, but had pointed out that the liver also has the remarkable ability to repair itself.  I was lucky I guess, I hadn’t quite gone past the point of no return, I had stopped in time and everything now seemed to be coming together.  The news about my liver results was really encouraging, after weeks of pain and wondering whether this was all worth it, suddenly I knew I was on the right track.

With all the pain gone, I decided it was time to get fit.  Over the last few years I had put on a lot of weight, when I was training regularly I was usually just over 11 stone, when I stopped drinking I was around 13 stone, I wanted to get back down below that 11 stone mark, even go as far as 10 stone, which I believed possible.  So I started watching what I ate and exercising every morning, the weight began to fall off.

I had set a goal of being 11½ stone by July when the National Championship came around.  In the last few years, despite my weight and the drinking I had still managed to perform pretty well, I had won the Senior Men’s Kata back in 2010 and came second in 2011, but now I believed I could do so much better this year.  I actually got my weight down to 11 stone by the day of the championships, I went there with so much expectation, if they couldn’t beat me unfit, then how could I be beaten now, I was in the best shape I had been in for over 15 years, what could go wrong?

Well it did, in my first round match I lost, I lost to someone I should never have lost to, but I did, I slipped slightly, but that didn’t matter in the scheme of things, I had lost, when I saw the flags go in my opponents favour, I was gutted, I was destroyed, so much disappointment, even anger, it wasn’t my opponents fault, he pulled out his best and won, in fact I’m not sure he could believe the result either, I bowed to the referee, walked back to the edge of the area, turned to shake my opponent’s hand and walked away.

Then it happened, I realised that despite all my hopes for winning, I realised that it wasn’t supposed to be, the truth was it was better that way, winning now would be too easy, it would seem like everything was fixed, when in reality it was only just the beginning, there was more work to do, I was far from fixed just yet.

I stopped walking, stood by the area and closed my eyes, I lifted my head and said to God…

“Ok, I’m with you God, I’m not there yet,
I’ve still got work to do, it’s not my time,
it’s not part of your plan, I am with you,
I will trust you to show me when the time is right”

Immediately any disappointment faded, deep down it was still there, but it was okay, there would be another day, it was just not today.  I remember writing in my journal that night and quite clearly writing….

I AM A WORK IN PROGRESS, BUT I HAVE TO WORK IN ORDER TO PROGRESS!

It had been a long day and I didn’t get back home until the early hours of the morning, but even through the disappointment the day had been a good one.  I had met up with many old friends, some of whom I had met up with last at a training session in April, it was right in the middle of my withdrawals and I couldn’t train because of the pain.  That day back in April all my old squad coaches found out my secret and what a mess I had become, now they got to see how I was overcoming it all.

DEAR X (YOU DON’T OWN ME) by DISCIPLE
Dear pain, oh, it’s been a long time
Remember when you were holding me tight
I would stay awake with you all night

Dear shame, I was safe in your arms
You were there when it all fell apart
I would get so lost in your beautiful lies

I let you go but you’re still chasing

Go ahead, you’re never going to take me
You can bend, but you’re never going to break me
I was yours, I’m not yours anymore
You don’t own me

Dear hate, I know you’re not far
You would wait at the door of my heart
I was amazed at the passion in your cries

Dear anger, you made me so high
You were faithful to show up on time
Such a flame that was burning in your eyes

I let you go, but you’re still chasing

Go ahead, you’re never going to take me
You can bend, but you’re never going to break me
I was yours, I’m not yours anymore
You don’t own me

Go ahead, put a target on my forehead
You can fire, but you’ve got no bullet
I was yours, I’m not yours anymore
You don’t own me

You tempted me to look back
But everything that we had together was a lie

Go ahead, you’re never going to take me
You can bend, but you’re never going to break me
I was yours, I’m not yours anymore
You don’t own me

Go ahead, put a target on my forehead
You can fire, but you’ve got no bullet
I was yours, I’m not yours anymore
You don’t own me

Go ahead, put a target on my forehead
You can fire, but you’ve got no bullet
I was yours, I’m not yours anymore
You don’t own me

Seriously Considering Changing My Name To “Scottie”!!!!

So it’s day six and the dizzy spells continue.  If you are a connoisseur of Classic Fifties Hitchcock thrillers, then you will no doubt under stand the reference in the title of this post, if not, then I will leave you to work it out!

It seems at random moments that my feet just start to wander off as I walk, I then just have to stop regain myself and then start walking again, at times it feels like I’m stumbling slightly and I still get dizzy if I stand too quickly or move my head to the side too quickly too, but other than that, it still all feels okay.

The headaches have gone now, it’s now just these light-headed moments which still linger, but let’s be honest here, I would much rather have these than every muscle and every joint screaming out in pain, I’ll take my wandering feet over that any time, I never want to experience that again.

Back then all I could do was pray for strength to get through and to reach out to friends in my moments of despair, I have been praying for support and strength all week, I also have had friends praying for me too, so hopefully this won’t last too much longer.

ARISE by FLYLEAF
Tell the swine
We will make it out alive
There’s a note in the pages of a book
So sleep tonight
We’ll sleep dreamlessly this time
When we awake we’ll know that everything’s alright

Sing to me about the end of the world
End of these hammers and needles for you

Hold on to the world we all remember fighting for
There’s still strength left in us yet
Hold on to the world we all remember dying for
There’s still hope left in it yet

There’s snow on your face
And your razor blade
The twilight is bruised
And there you lie

Sing to me about the end of the world
End of these hammers and needles for you
We’ll cry tonight
And in the morning we are new
Stand in the sun
We’ll dry your eyes

Hold on to the world we all remember fighting for
There’s still strength left in us yet
Hold on to the world we all remember dying for
There’s still hope left in it yet

Sing, sing
Arise

Arise and be
All that you dreamed
All that you dreamed

(Hold on to the world we all remember fighting for)
Arise and be
All that you dreamed
All that you dreamed
(Hold on to the world we all remember fighting for)
Arise and be
All that you dreamed
All that you dreamed
(Hold on to the world we all remember fighting for)

Moving On Again

I’ve been a little absent from my Blog over the last few weeks, I’ve just realised it’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted a detailed on how I’ve been and two weeks since I posted a poem, I have been posting daily with my Verse of the Day posts, but other than that, I’ve been a little lapse.

In terms of the poetry, I’ve found my biggest inspiration for these has come on Sunday mornings at Church, I find during the our earlier Chapel meeting I get a word which starts me with a theme, then between sessions, once I’ve finished setting up the camera’s, I sit alone just listening to the Worship Band practice and begin the process of writing down the first drafts of a poem, based on the words I feel I’ve been given and the further inspiration from the band as they play.

Last Sunday I couldn’t make Church due to a karate commitment, so it would seem over these last two weeks, I’ve been lacking a little bit of inspiration.

Also over the past month I’ve been suffering with a persistent cough, which just doesn’t seem to want to go away, it seems to subside and then comes back strong for a while, hopefully it’s slowly going, but it has worn me down a little.

It was a good morning in Church and after just one week away, it was so good to be back, it was only one week, but it seemed like longer.

This morning I felt like I was being told to begin moving forward once more, I feel a little like I’ve just been drifting forward slowly over the last few months, well to be honest it’s since I went on the anti-depressants last November.

Since then I felt tired and lethargic most of the time, I understand this can be one of the side effects of this type of medication, but I feel this is holding me back now, I don’t feel like I need them anymore, but I feel like I am afraid not to take them too.

A month or two ago I had a few days off work and being out of my daily routine forgot to take my tablets.  I also missed just one day back in April, the day after I had bad headaches and dizzy spells, I put it down to being just tired, but then it happened again when I had this time off, each day I had headaches and dizzy spells, I put two and two together and quickly started taking the anti-depressants again.

But now I am determined to begin the process of moving on again, to stand and walk forward once more, but I realised this morning that I will need all the strength and support that only God can give if I am to do this.

I think it’s going to be a rough week, but it won’t last forever and I’m determined to get through it.  After all I got through those bad weeks of withdrawals when I stopped drinking, back then the whole body cried out in pain, every muscle and every joint screamed at me, there were times then when I wanted to give in and drink again, but I put my faith in God and prayer, I made it through then and I am going to do it again.

I hope to post throughout the week and discuss how I’m feeling as I go along.

BACK TO THE BEGINNING AGAIN by SWITCHFOOT
I can feel it building up inside
The images that play inside my mind
A dreams that I’ve been dreaming all my life
The colors that live outside of the lines

But dreams aren’t all I hide beneath this skin
The cord is cut, the fears and doubts begin
My hope is anchored on the other side
With the colors that live outside of the lines

And the oceans roar
And the wheel’s in spin
And the old chorus soars
Bring me back, bring me back to the beginning again

With the corrugated LA harbor stacks
With the weight of these machines across my back
I know a mountain road where time unwinds
But I’m busy living in a single-file line

And it all just sounds like poison on my ears
The background noise makes your voice so hard to hear
So I grit my teeth and straighten up my spine
I’m stuck in traffic on a dotted yellow line

And my heart is yours
And what a broken place it’s in
But you’re what I’m running for
And I want to feel the wind at my back again

Back to the beginning again
Back to the beginning again
I want to feel the wind at my back again
Back to the beginning again
Back to the beginning again
I want to feel the wind at my back again

And my heart is yours
And what a broken place it’s in
But you’re what I’m running for
And I want to feel the wind at my back again

Back to the beginning again
Back to the beginning again
I want to feel the wind at my back again
Back to the beginning again
Back to the beginning again
I want to feel the wind
I want to feel the wind
I want to feel the wind at my back again

Verse of the Day – Psalm 107:13-14

Psalm 107:13-14

Psalm 107:13-14

There are times like this evening, where I have to delve into the details of my past addicted life, that makes me evermore thankful for verses like this one, because I am so thankful that He heard my cries and broke those chains that bound me in my darkness.

BREAK EVERY CHAIN by JESUS CULTURE
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus

To break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus

To break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

To break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

All sufficient sacrifice
So freely given
Such a price
Bought our redemption
Heaven’s gates swing wide

There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

There’s an army rising up
There’s an army rising up
There’s an army rising up

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

There’s an army rising up
There’s an army rising up
There’s an army rising up

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

To Break every chain
Break every chain
Break every chain

 

The Amazing 100th Week

So my week of 100’s comes to an end today, starting with Thursday being that magical 100 week of sobriety, through to today and my 100th week attending Everyday Champions Church, but I have to say this has been my strongest week in some time.

Obviously Thursday meant a lot to me, it was a big milestone, when you consider over the last twenty odd years, the longest I had managed without a drink was a couple of months about fifteen years ago, but back then I wasn’t actually drinking that much anyway.

At the time I stopped drinking on the 29th March 2012, I intended it would be the last time, but I have to say in those first months, especially when the withdrawals kicked in, I was tempted, when your body is screaming out in pain and you know it just wants another drink, when one drink could take all that away, but with that drink comes the pain of what you were, it was tough to stick to my decision, it was hard, but with faith, prayer and some amazing new friends, I got through those hard times.  But now, even when I struggled back in November, I never was tempted to drink, there was no urge at all, I have been set free of that addiction.

This week I’ve done a fair bit of work for the Architects and for the first time in months I managed to get it done without getting stressed, without losing my temper and without slipping back to the shadows of depression.  I’m still taking the medication, but obviously it seems to be doing what it is intended to do, even though a couple of times this week I’ve still been drawing at 10.30pm, I have managed to stay stress free!

Wednesday was a great night at Encounter with Guest Speaker Mark Richie.  Mark’s very funny, but very passionate about faith and bringing people to God, it was a really great night and he’s back at ECC in a few weeks, I can’t wait.  I had a big personal break through on Wednesday night also, something I’ve struggled with over the last few months, was at last broken, I got beyond myself and let the Holy Spirit in.

Today was also a great day in Church, I feel that I am more free each time I go there.  That first day one hundred weeks ago, I was so afraid, I didn’t know what to expect, I never sang, I never moved, although I did cry!

Today there were some great reminders of that day, the first song we sang today was the only one I remember hearing on that first day, it stood out because the next day the same song played on my iPod as I walked to work.  Also this morning Pastor Ken took the first service, he also took the service on my first day in Church!

I left Church that first week feeling it was definitely where I wanted to be, 100 weeks later and today they showed that they are still as supportive now as they were right back at the start.

So this has definitely been one of my best weeks in some time, a far cry from the last November and an even farther cry than where I was in the weeks before I quit drinking all those week ago!

I HAVE DECIDED by STARFIELD
I have decided to follow Jesus
I have decided to follow Jesus
I have decided to follow Jesus
No turning back, No turning back

I will follow You, I will follow You, I will follow You my God
I will follow You, I will follow You, I will follow You my God

Though none go with me still I will follow
Though none go with me still I will follow
Though none go with me still I will follow
No turning back, No turning back

I will follow You, I will follow You, I will follow You my God
I will follow You, I will follow You, I will follow You my God

The world behind me, the Cross before me
The world behind me, the Cross before me
The world behind me, the Cross before me
No turning back, No turning back

I will follow You, I will follow You, I will follow You my God
I will follow You, I will follow You, I will follow You my God
Yeah, I will follow you, my God

Memories Of The Pain Of Withdrawals

One of the most used phrases at work this morning was “is it really almost two and half weeks since Christmas”, these weeks seem to be flying by so quickly already.  As a new year it seemed to have started so well, just a little blip yesterday with a bit of stress last night, but that has passed and this morning I was quite positive.

Well I say things seemed to be going quite well until a few hours into work when the backs of my legs began to ache.  I don’t know why, at first I thought it may have been the cold as I walked to work.  But it didn’t lift, in fact it seemed to get worse as the morning passed.  The when I got home this afternoon it extended to my hips!

When I got home I fell asleep on the settee, when I woke just before leaving for karate it had subsided slightly, just my legs aching and through karate they were uncomfortable and they still are, just a continuous dull aching and the odd deep pain.

The last time I felt anything like this was back in April and May 2012, within three weeks of quitting drinking the withdrawals kicked in, firstly with headaches and then it spread all the way through my body, with constant pain and aching in my joints and muscles.  I remember sitting in Church one Sunday, I just couldn’t do anything, in the end I just cried, I couldn’t move, it hurt to move, but I couldn’t sit still either that hurt just as bad, it didn’t matter what I did, it just hurt and pain killers just didn’t do anything.

The next night I still clearly remember lying on this same settee, ready to give up, my body was screaming for alcohol, it wanted me to drink again and I was close to doing it.  I was alone that night, the rest of the family were doing their own thing in other parts of the house and I was alone, crying in pain once again, fighting hard, but seemingly losing.

That was until I picked up my phone and texted a James, telling him how bad I was feeling and that I wanted to give up, I had had enough and couldn’t take it anymore!  But the funny thing was once that text message had been sent I seemed to gain some level of control over the pain and the desperation to drink again.  Almost instantly I felt a sense of relief and calmed down.  James didn’t respond until later that evening, but when he did it helped even more.  The next day I saw the Doctor, started taking Co-codamol, but even that didn’t really help, but after another week of pain it slowly subsided and I could get on with looking forward again.

They were the some of the hardest weeks of my life, trying to fight both the pain and the urge of an addiction, all the time while trying to turn my life around, so much going on and so much adjusting to be done, it was hard, but I got through it.  One of the main things that helped was knowing that i was no longer alone.  There were times when prayer helped get me through, where when I was desperate and alone my prayers for help were answered.  Then other times there were friends that were there for me, with words of encouragement and prayers, friends I would never have found if it wasn’t for God, he brought me to the some amazing people who have been fighting my corner with me all the way through.

Today’s aches are nothing like those I endured during the withdrawals, but lying there earlier today brought back a few memories, in some ways bad, but in other ways good memories, good because I know that I had God with me in those moments.

And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.
1 Peter 5:10

MY GOD by LUMINATE
Are you lost, my runaway?
All is spent, squandered away
You’ve had your taste; you’ve had your fill
It’s not enough; you’re wanting still
He said, My son, if you come home
I’ll wrap you in My finest robes
And we will dance until the dawn
No greater love; you are My son

My God, my God
What mercy You have shown to me
My God, my God
Forever I will sing to Thee

Do you feel broke beyond repair?
The crushing weight is too much to bear
And with no hope for innocence
Who will stand in your defense?

But One has come, to claim His own
To fight for you, oh, weary soul
The world you fear, a threat no more
For Earth will hear the victor’s roar
This song will rise, from shore to shore
We are free; we’re bound no more
And we will dance, and all will know
For it’s the coming of my Lord

This song will rise, from shore to shore
We are free, where bound no more

What Do You See When I Say I’m An Alcoholic?

Over the last few weeks it’s fair to say that I’ve had a number of occasions where I’m pretty certain the people around me have no idea what an alcoholic actually is or even should look and act like. Even my own parents seem to me like they fail to see me as an alcoholic, either they can’t accept that their Son has failed in this way or they just don’t know what an alcoholic actually is!

A couple of weeks ago at work when the discussions turned to the Christmas dinner and I said I would be going straight home after the dinner itself, I was asked if I could have a drink and still be okay. Obviously I said no, I couldn’t trust that myself and know it would be okay and as it almost destroyed my life, I would not take that chance of falling back into that hole, it was a case for me that I just couldn’t take that one drink, it wasn’t worth it, for that I was called weak!

This was one of the reasons why I didn’t want to go to the dinner. Sometimes opinionated people just aren’t worth arguing with, there is no way I can really explain it, only with the experience of living out this or indeed any other addiction can you really appreciate how it is.

But what does the world see as being an alcoholic?

In this day and age we see what the media shows us, the stereotypes, the drunken bum, staggering the streets, slurring all his words and generally a bit of mess, a little bit mad.  There’s the guy that props up the bar every night, he’s lost everything already and drinks as if it’s all he has left, you know the type, whisky or brandy, no soft stuff, just hard liquor every night.

Then there’s the load mouth, getting tanked up on as many pints as possible, fighting anyone who looks at him the wrong way, he then probably goes home and beats up his wife/girlfriend or even his kids, we’ve all heard the stories and seen it on TV.

There are so many images of an alcoholic we can all see in the everyday media, but essentially we assume that an alcoholic gets out of his tree every time, he has to blackout, not remember who they are or what they did.  I admit there were a few times I can’t remember what I did or how I got home, some embarrassing times, but these were when I went out with others, this was a once a year sort of thing, not my everyday alcoholic lifestyle.

I don’t think I fit into any of these stereotypical vision of an alcoholic, that’s why I managed to hide it so well, people just didn’t know what they were looking at, they didn’t read the signs, because society tells us something different, it paints a very different picture of this addiction call alcoholism.

I know many people who “get out of their tree” more in a couple of months than I did in all my years where I would consider myself an alcoholic.  But I don’t believe they have a drinking problem, they drink maybe a little a few nights a week and then go out and party once in a while.

But that wasn’t my style, it wasn’t me, I didn’t mind a few drinks in the pub while chatting with others, but the pub crawl and night club lifestyle, well I hated it, I don’t see how people can do it each week, but many of those that do and get stinking drunk once a week, society now says have a drinking problem, they are binge drinkers and something has to be done about the problem.

But what about me, the silent drinker, the guy that prefers to do his drinking in solitude, behind closed doors, away from the public eye.  I might not have got drunk every night or even once a week, but isn’t that a bit of a problem, I got to the point that in my own home I could almost drink as much as I wanted and still not feel drunk, not pass out without remembering the night before, no I would just drink until I fell asleep, still remembering everything, as each month passed my resistance to the stuff grew and grew, how much could I drink or need to drink until I passed out.

But I am convinced that society doesn’t see this as alcoholic, it doesn’t recognise it, because they never see this side of the problem.  The silent drinker doesn’t make a fool of themselves in the pub or embarrass people at parties, they may do once in a while, but let’s face it most people whether heavy drinkers or not have done that.

These binge drinkers that party at the weekend and if you like sober up during the week, are they truly alcoholics?  I would personally say not, they don’t drink because they actually have to, because there is no other way for them, they drink for the most part of peer pressure or to fit in with the crowd, it’s a social thing, I’m not saying it’s right, but that’s the way I see it.

Why did I drink, initially because I enjoyed it, then when life began to take a turn and the stress was hard to deal with, when I found that the nights I didn’t drink I couldn’t sleep, the stress would keep me awake all night, but the nights when I drank, I would be nice and relaxed and sleep through, it became a no brainer, drink each night, problem solved.  Then a couple of drinks became four pints, then four became six, then eight, then I moved to wine, one bottle, then two, then eventually I found myself drinking five pints and two bottles of wine a night, not just one night, but most nights, a minimum would be at least five or six pints of strong lager or cider, I couldn’t drink the weak stuff, it had to be min 5% alcohol, nothing else would do.

Eventually though you get into this cycle, where what you are going to drink that night takes precedent over everything else, affording that is more important that paying bills, you work out what you need for drink that week or even that night and the rest can wait, that will get paid when it get’s paid, I must drink, I have to, I can’t survive unless I get my drink.  There were night’s when I didn’t have money to drink, Victoria had long since challenged me about my drinking, but I brushed it off, but on these night’s even she gave me money to go to the shop, she knew I would be impossible to be around unless I had something to drink, that’s how bad it was, she even called me FUN BOBBY, for all you die hard Friends fans will no doubt get the reference!

When I was home alone during the day I would watch the clock, in my head it was okay to drink at tea time, to start when my tea was ready, that was okay, wasn’t it?  Funny how the clock never seems to tick by fast enough, eventually I couldn’t take waiting, I would have a few cans in the quiet of the afternoon and dump the cans before anyone knew, it was okay as long as no one found out.

Are these the actions of the alcoholics we see in the media, I would say not, that’s probably why I never thought I had a problem, because I wasn’t like the drunks we are told are alcoholics, nothing like them at all.  But I drank because it took control, if I didn’t I would be restless, short tempered, I would rub my hands and scratch at my arms, all the while whilst pacing around the house, trying to fight it, but losing.

The night it all blew up here with Victoria and I finally realised what I was and that I no longer had any control over it, indeed I hadn’t for some time, that night I knew this was destroying me, but for a while it got worse, I wasn’t eating, only drinking, drinking everything I could get my hands on and all I could do was apologise each and every time I left the house to go to the shop, I would say I’m sorry as I walked out again, unable to control the urge, to fight the addiction.

Then I found myself desperate to die, I was ready to go, I had the knife, I had it at my wrist, I had all the reasons floating around my head, how bad I was and how everyone was better off without me, but I couldn’t do it, I should rephrase that, I wasn’t allowed to do it.  The next morning obviously I made the call to Gareth and he brought God into my life, from there my life began to change, I began to gain control over this problem, over the next ten days I slowly lowered my intake until on 29th March 2012, I took my last drink.

Since then it’s been a roller coaster, the withdrawals were hard, but they could have been worse, you can’t explain to people how they affect you, everything ached, my whole body, nothing escaped it, pain killers hardly did anything, it was a case of just ride it out.  I’m not saying I haven’t been tempted since I stopped, I have, but I know there is no going back to that, it’s not worth it.

But the problem is, how many others are suffering this disease in silence, drinking themselves into a hole in their own house, where the world doesn’t see them and doesn’t recognise their problem.  It may not be a big amount they’re drinking, but it’s the reason they are drinking that is key, I drank to remove me from my problems, which I’m sure many of the silent drinkers do also.  The people I knew where taken completely by surprise when I announced I was an alcoholic, the usual, “we knew you liked a drink, but we didn’t see you as an alcoholic”, no one saw it, because they don’t know the signs, they’ve never been shown them!

How many people will silently drink themselves into a grave, I was lucky, I got saved, I know I was heading that way, when I stopped drinking my blood pressure was sky high, I was a heart attack waiting to happen, but that may not of killed me first, I may just have succeeding in taking my own life first, that Sunday 18th March 2012, that wasn’t the first time I stood there with a blade to my wrist, far from it, but it was the last time in a probably a dozen times where I had stood there in that scenario, each time when I put the blade down I was so angry, I was so mad with myself because I neither had the courage to live or the courage to die, I was in the void, lost in the darkness.

When God came into my life my whole world began to change, everything changed, I changed, when I prayed that first time, all I asked for was strength to get through this and to sleep, that night my prayer came true, I had the best night’s sleep and not a drop of alcohol in sight, I knew then God was with me, I knew I had got it right.

The Lord gives strength to his people;
The Lord blesses his people with peace.
Psalm 29:11

GIVE YOU PEACE by ECHOING ANGELS
I see you lying their whispering prayers
I hear you breathing out hollowed be thy name
Holding out my hand catching every tear
Oh my child I’ll never leave your side

I will give you peace when the walls come crashing down
I will give you peace through the night
When you’ve had all you can take can’t face another day
I’ll give you peace, I’ll give you peace

For such a time as this I have you here
Chosen for the lost to show I’m near
Through your brokenness my glory shines
And through your frailty my strength will rise

I will give you peace when the walls come crashing down
I will give you peace through the night
When you’ve had all you can take can’t face another day
I’ll give you peace, I’ll give you peace

Your beautiful, your beautiful
Perfect in my sight
Righteousness adorns you my bride
Your beautiful, so beautiful

I will give you peace when the walls come crashing down
I will give you peace through the night
When you’ve had all you can take can’t face another day
I’ll give you peace, I’ll give you peace

And I will give you peace when the walls come crashing down
I will give you peace through the night
When you’ve had all you can take can’t face another day
I’ll give you peace, I’ll give you peace

Up And Down

I wish this journey was easy, for a time it seemed that way, but then it seemed to take a turn, from a gentle paddle down stream, into the vicious torrent of a white water rapids.

When I started out it was hard, going through the pain of withdrawal at the same time as trying to come to terms with the reality of the situation I found myself in, it wasn’t easy and I struggled at times. There were certainly times I wanted to give in, to go back and pick up a bottle to take the pain away, just like the life I used to lead, but I stuck at it, I learnt to pray and found that sharing my problems and my pain seemed to ease them somewhat.

Once I got through that it seemed a steady climb to begin growing as a person, throughout the rest of last year I feel I made progress and along the way a few occasions arrived that saw me grow immensely.

I know from my karate training, that over the years I developed fairly steadily, then there were a few distinctive points where something just fell into place and I made rapid advances in understanding and as a result technique improved considerably.

I can see that from last year also, I thought I was moving along steadily from May when the withdrawals finally subsided, until July, then as I doubted myself, but I was lifted from my seat to the stage in a moment to be Baptised, it was a big step, one I didn’t believe I was ready for or even understood, but when the calling came, who I was I to ignore it, I accepted it and stepped from my self doubt to be baptised.

Then around this time last year I had another one of those big steps forward. I attended the Unleash getaway with the men from Everyday Champions Church. There in the very first session I had and interview of sorts with James, for the first time I got to let out the real details of who I really was and what it was I had brought me to where I was. I hadn’t really gone into detail about it since the night Gareth and Alex came around back in March, but in the six months that had passed I had discovered a lot more about me and my addiction, that night in March I never intentionally lied, it was that it just it was hidden so deep, I wasn’t even admitting it to myself. I had had a lot if time to discover all the details in the months between, then starting this blog at the beginning of October last year allowed me to discover even more about myself, so much more than I ever realised. I could discuss that in an environment that was safe, I had no fear that night, I was able to say everything I wanted, that weekend I grew, that weekend some of the chains that held me down were broken, that was a big step forward for me, an invaluable weekend that went too fast.

After that the rest of the year and the first few months if this year were easy sailing, I was handling it all well and growing steadily, then a phone call at 7am on the morning of 1st March, shook my world.

Since that moment the easy sailing has never been quite the same, since then it’s been a rough ride all the way. I had a tough time coming to terms with my Nan’s death, it hit hard and I wobbled big time, I never honestly thought about drinking, but I really struggled with my thinking, I fell into my own head again, trapped in the madness.

Then just as I seemed to get out of that, I hit another problem, we were broke, no money and bills piling up again, I found myself in despair again, struggling with all that and obviously it put even more strain on a relationship that was already in tatters, I stumbled again.

Then prayer brought work and answers, I started to get back on track until another phone call. Just as I was picking myself up my other Nan died, back to square one, the rough ride continued.

Since then it’s been an up and down sort of ride, there are times when I feel good and really think I’m moving forward and then times when I get stuck back in my own mind again, that brings me down big time.

The worst thing about that is that when I there I try to deal with it all on my own, that feeling of it’s my problem to deal with and others really won’t understand stand what it is I’m struggling with. In reality that isn’t true, I know that, but when you’re stuck in a mind that’s depressed, your view of things becomes clouded.

Of late a lot has troubled me, nearly always down to money and relationship, but let’s be honest here, the latter is the one that beats me down the most and puts me back deeper into my own mind.

Sometimes things are okay and other times the little things just get to me. The other week the reality of what I had created for myself was spelt out to me and it broke me down, it threw me right back in there.

Last night got to me as well, in a different way, it made me realise how alone I seem to find myself and it’s of my own making. Once again I’m trying to cope with all this in silence, last night was no different.  I know I’m not alone, friends are always there to help, I just seem to keep trying to do it all on me own.

When Justin asked for anyone who needs prayer to go to the front to be prayed for, I held fast, I knew I should go, I knew I needed to go forward, but I stood in my own silence again. I seemed to be telling myself that I couldn’t go, I’ve done it too many times that I couldn’t go forward again! But at the same time I knew I should go too, but I just stood there head down, holding on. Then Jo came to me, she knew what had got to me the other week, she asked if she could pray with me, I just nodded and then cried. Then James joined me, he prayed too and said he felt that I was in turmoil inside, well he hit the nail on the head with that one, I am still in turmoil.

Even tonight something really simple is getting to me, I understand why and the reasons, but it doesn’t stop it getting right under my skin, putting me back in that mind of mine.

But tomorrow, there is light, it’s back to Unleash again, a year on from where I had a massive breakthrough, at a time when I need it most, I’m praying I have a similar experience.  Maybe I’ll get the chance to be open and really discuss what it is that’s hidden so deep, that really is getting to me.

I pray both morning and night for my situation, I will keep praying, both morning and night.  This morning I stood at the side of the lake praying, I was trying my best to bring it all to God, but the words weren’t there, that’s when I felt I had to do it differently, I was being told do it the way you know how to do it best, if you can’t say it write it.  Last night I had started on a poem about how exactly I was feeling, I need to revisit it and expand on it somewhat, it’s probably the most honest one I’ve ever written, but it may take a while longer to complete, we’ll see…

So for now rant over, I’m tired, I’m worn and just looking to tomorrow now.

BATTLE FOR PEACE by LUMINATE
There’s a trench in the floor
From my knees, from my knees
I’ve prayed for years
I’ve wanted more
Down on my knees, on my knees
And I have lost my voice
Crying out, crying out
Until I hear You speak
I’m crying out, I’m crying out

I will fall down, I will fall down
I will fall down, at Your feet
And all this time, I was blind
I couldn’t see, I couldn’t see
That Your love, is never earned
Oh, it’s free, it’s free

What am I fighting for
Is it for peace, is it for peace
How can I stop this war
Inside of me, inside of me
I will fall down, I will fall down
I will fall down, at Your feet
I’m trading this battle for peace
I’m trading this battle for peace 

Beautiful Memories

Daily Prompt: Moved To Tears

Does something beautiful really have to be something we have to see to appreciate?

Is beauty purely visual?

Or is it something we truly feel within our hearts?

Over the last 18 months I’ve been moved to tears so many times, probably more than the rest of my life put together. Mostly they were tears of pain, especially in the early months, emotional pain of a relationship break up, of the loss of myself and the intense pain of withdrawals. Earlier this year I had the pain of the death of both of my Nans to deal with, deep emotional pain hits hard.

But the last few times I’ve been moved to tears the only thing in front of me, the only thing in my physical vision, were my own words.

The beauty which has moved me to tears of late, including just this last Sunday, was memories of people’s actions, these simple memories  move me to tears every time.

On Sunday in my post “Alone In A Crowded Room” I wrote about my first morning in Church, about going in alone, sitting quietly at the back, until an elderly couple, John and Eve, came and sat with me, as I wrote about that moment and I ran through the images of that morning in my mind, I shed tears as the ‘beautiful’ actions of two wonderful people filled my head and my heart. A scared sinner, in a strange place, far outside his comfort zone, trying to stay anonymous, afraid of how people would conceive him when they knew the truth, but all of that was wiped away, John and Eve weren’t bothered who I was or what I had done, none of that mattered as they welcomed me to Church and offered their help in anyway possible, the memory of that moment was a beautiful vision as I’ve ever seen, it moved me to tears.

But these memories that move me to tears are not confined to just that single moment, but so many different moments, so many times over this last 18 months when I have been shown such kindness, the  hope and inspiration I receive from people as I meet them for the first time, as my story unravels and none of it matters.

To me these moments are priceless, memories I will treasure for ever and hold on to when times are so good, when things aren’t so fantastic, I can remember how I feared so much before, how when I was afraid to let people see who I was and how I was feeling, none of that mattered.

There have been so many times since those first weeks when I’ve been low or struggling and the members of Everyday Champions Church have picked me up and put me back on my feet, so many time where they have carried me and rebuilt me, I could never repay them for what they have done for me.

I am so thankful to all these friends for the care and love they have shown me, but mostly I am so thankful to God, for releasing me from my chains and for bringing these people into my life.

SOMETHING BEAUTIFUL by NEEDTOBREATHE
In your ocean, I’m ankle deep
I feel the waves crashin’ on my feet
It’s like I know where I need to be
But I can’t figure out, yeah I can’t figure out

Just how much air I will need to breathe
When your tide rushes over me
There’s only one way to figure out
Will ya let me drown, will ya let me drown

Hey now, this is my desire
Consume me like a fire, ’cause I just want something beautiful
To touch me, I know that I’m in reach
‘Cause I am down on my knees, I’m waiting for something beautiful
Oh, something beautiful

And the water is risin’ quick
And for years I was scared of it
We can’t be sure when it will subside
So I won’t leave your side, no I can’t leave your side

Hey now, this is my desire
Consume me like a fire, ’cause I just want something beautiful
To touch me, I know that I’m in reach
‘Cause I am down on my knees, I’m waiting for something beautiful
Oh, something beautiful

In a daydream, I couldn’t live like this
I wouldn’t stop until I found something beautiful
When I wake up, I know I will have
No, I still won’t have what I need

Hey now, this is my desire
Consume me like a fire, ’cause I just want something beautiful
To touch me, I know that I’m in reach
‘Cause I am down on my knees, I’m waiting for something beautiful
Oh, something beautiful (fade out)

The Pain Of Withdrawals

Saturday evening, just prior to writing my journal entry for the night, I picked up my journal from this weekend last year, I knew that around this time I was suffering with the withdrawal symptoms brought on as a result of quitting drinking, it happened to be the worst weekend of pain I had to endure, it was for me quite severe, but luckily it was as bad as it would get and by the end of the next week it all began to subside.

Friday 20th April 2012

Once again I feel worn out by all of this and confused by what is happening to me, is this aching because I’m coming down with something or is it withdrawals, I don’t know, but definitely questions to ask Doctor Cusack on Tuesday, I ache all over, I find it difficult to cope with, even the order for the take away going wrong tonight, that was a real low point for the week and again I’m not happy with myself for that, but I’m doing my best to handle all of this, but it’s a lonely road to travel at the moment, I need help, I don’t think I can do this alone anymore.  Maybe I am run down, but it’s hard, the aches, the pain, the tiredness, how long will all this last before I can move on, this week has been the worst since I started this book, a real struggle to get through, the ribs haven’t helped, working late, the weather, it’s made a pretty rubbish week really, hopefully it can’t get any worse, I’m not sure if I could cope with this any more, as I wrote before this is the first test of my faith and I have failed miserably, but I don’t want to, last week seemed so easy, this week seems so hard, it’s all very confusing in an already very confused life, again I’m not sure if I can cope with much more of this.

Grantham tomorrow, no training, that’s not wise at the moment, but I want to get back into training as soon as I can, I need it, I need some focus.

I will be at Church on Sunday, I’m going to continue what I’ve started and I will be praying for help, because I feel lost at the moment, well lost, I don’t know which way to turn to get through, but I will ask for guidance, hopefully I will get some answers!

Saturday 21st April 2012

Once again a painful day, I suffered with backache and headaches all day, together with the rib.  I survived on paracetamol and ibuprofen all day, they take the edge off, but not the aching, it just dulls it not takes it away, how much longer will I have this, I’m not sure I want to live with this, drinking again would be easier!

Today I confessed to the two people that I have the most respect for, Sensei Ohta and Sensei Adel, both were very understanding and very encouraging, in that I seem to be doing the right thing, that made me feel a bit happier, I would have liked to have trained, but I don’t think I would have managed that, but I’ll set my sights on the Nationals, just get through the next few weeks, get a sign that my health is returning, then I’m going for it, Adel still thinks there is nobody else to beat me, so let’s do it, sort myself out and go for it!

Church tomorrow, looking forward to it, but this time I’m going dosed up and ready with reserves and a couple of bottles of water, I want to hang behind, speak to people, not run off, so ibuprofen, paracetamol, water and some mints or something, ready to combat any aches and pains, any shivers or shakes or panic attacks.  Chin up, face the world, I will beat this, I will be well, I’m ready for the rest of my life and nothing is going to stop me!

Sunday 22nd April 2012

Yet another day of pain, it doesn’t seem to go away, if it’s not a headache, it’s the ribs or the back, my hip, my knees or the kidneys or a combination of some of them, it really is driving me to despair.  I’ve spent the day on pain killers that really aren’t having much of an effect, they take the edge off, numb the pain slightly, but they don’t take it away, if I take them when I have a headache that goes away, but another pain appears.

I enjoyed Church again today, the topic of depression is still fresh in my mind and still close, this pain is pushing me close to depression again.  I couldn’t say to people I was OK, I’m not, I’m struggling and I had to let people know, firstly Leanne, she was very understanding and caring, then Joss, he prayed for me, for the Lord to relieve my pain, then Gareth, he prayed also, all very understanding.  Then Lisa questioned my frown, I said I was in pain, she asked why, I told her it was alcohol withdrawals and I would explain later, which I did, she was very understanding and caring, then I explained to Nick, again very understanding and none judgemental, just pleased to see I was addressing the issues and getting better.  A chat with James and then Gareth explaining my week, my pain and that I was back at the Doctor’s Tuesday for my results, I will tell the Doctor everything and we’ll see what happens.

Not hungry that much today, lasagne for dinner than a bit of a sleep, no pain whilst I sleep, I can relax, but I am so tired, work tomorrow, hopefully I can keep busy and rise above the pain and tiredness, I hope so, because I can’t keep having days like this, I’m trying to stay positive, but not sure for how long I can keep it up!

Monday 23rd April 2012

I’m falling apart at the seams, although the aches and pain are there I think I’m exaggerating them before others, I’m not sure why, sympathy or do I expect others to share it, today it’s okay, it’s a means to getting better, I don’t really know why, I know the pains there, but probably not as bad as I thought it was or think it is, the ribs I understand, but it seems worse than before, the back, the left side, I’m not sure, compensating for the rib, who knows, the kidneys/lower back, is it the water or am I imagining it or looking for excuses?  The headaches, I’m not one for headaches, so there must be a reason I’m getting so many, the more tired I feel the more acute the pain, maybe it’s coincidence, maybe it is withdrawals, I guess the Doctor will spread some light on it tomorrow.

Tonight I cracked up big time, lying alone, in tears of my own self pity once gain, no booze, just the pain, I texted James, just the sharing seemed to lift me slightly, I had to let someone know, once it was shared it lifted some of the fear, I’m not alone or I don’t have to be, a problem shared is a problem halved, as they say, maybe they are right, once he came back to me I know I’m not alone there are people out there who can help me, I must remember I’m not alone in this, funnily enough I have to be strong enough to ask for help, not too weak to be to afraid to admit I need help, I can’t do this alone, but now I know I’m not really alone, I only need to ask for help and I will get it, I feel better now, a little more in control, I AM NOT ALONE!!!!

Tuesday 24th April 2012

Mix bag of emotions today, a good start at the Doctor’s, apart from the raised blood pressure, which was lower than it has been, the blood tests and ECG were largely normal, although the liver results weren’t good, Doctor Cusack thinks this will right itself in time, more blood tests in two weeks.  The long and short of it is, he has doubled the Losartan tablets to 100mg for the blood pressure, I explained the pain and aches I have been having, he was unconcerned about these and put them down to the body adjusting, but there maybe a few more weeks of these aches and pains, so he’s given me a prescription for co-codamol tablets, I tried these this afternoon, they do a lot better than the others, I’ve got to be careful with these, they can be addictive also!  So all in all better results than expected, made me a lot happier than I was on Monday night!

I’m not at my wits end like Monday, I’m a lot happier, but still shattered, still I in some discomfort, but the new tablets help, but as they can make you drowsy, together with the fact I am very tired, they are making me feel even more shattered and make it hard to concentrate and then things become a bit fuzzy, this is after two doses today, I will minimise how much and when I take them and monitor how I feel on them, I don’t want to be a drug dependant zombie, I’ve only just stopped being an alcoholic zombie!  There is still a long way to go before I’m well and fit, the blood pressure is I think a long term thing, but I need to get past these pains so I can start to get myself fit again!

Wednesday 25th April 2012

Well what a day, the weather has been terrible, it’s rained all day, so work has been quite slow really, managed to get deliveries away, PPI done, JB’s quotes up to date, all with minimal pain today, slight aches today, nothing major, some paracetamol and ibuprofen during the day, so manageable for the first time since Friday, which is good, am I turning a corner, I don’t know really, too early to say yet, tomorrow maybe bad again, it came and went last week, so why not again, took two co-codamol tonight, slept for a few hours, but missed Alcatraz, bugger, oh well, watch it later.

So on the whole a better day, tiring still, need sleep, as I write this even after a few hours sleep, I’m ready for bed, eyes are starting to feel tired and blurry, that maybe the pain killers, but I know I’m well ready to sleep, I feel like I could sleep for a week or longer, I catch up a bit, then have a few nights where I don’t sleep very well, which puts it all back, but I must keep going, not focusing too much on the negatives, but more on the positives, I think over the past week I concentrated so much on the pain, I was making it feel worse than it really was, now to be positive and rise above it, I AM BEATING THIS!!!

Thursday 26th April 2012

When I woke this morning, I felt like I had a new spring in my step, I woke more positive than I have in a long time, actually more positive than I have ever woke, no pains, wide awake, ready for the day, ready to face the world, well refreshed after plenty of sleep on Wednesday.  A good start, good walk to work, plenty of enthusiasm, a good start to the day, I hope I wake like that every morning!

The day slowed a bit after that, pain slowly set in over the day, start with mild ache in the back, rib getting in the way, but the slow day at work slows my day, funny I prefer when we are well busy, the more I’m occupied the better I work, when the pace slows so do I, then things get put off rather than dealt with, when I’m busy they just get done, strange but a busy me is a better me!  By the end of the day the pain in my shoulders got worse, but a sleep after tea and a soak in the bath, followed by a couple of co-codamol, I was ready for karate, the class went well, a few mild aches, the odd twinge, but no real issues, a good class, quite enjoyable really, so that’s all good.

After that sat in the pub with a lime n soda, tiredness set in again, I struggled to concentrate on the questions, so still tied by the end of the day, so still a long way to go.

So four weeks now, no alcohol and still not bothered by it, now the pain is subsiding, it’s getting easier to cope with, so keep going, I don’t need it anymore, I’m free and I’m staying free.

As I sit here writing this one year later, I remember that Monday evening so vividly, it’s etched on mind, that feeling of lying alone on this very settee, drowning under the waves of my own tears, when out of nowhere I picked up my phone and tapped in that message;

“Hi James, Sorry to bother u, not having a good night, these aches n pains r really getting me down, I feel alone & as if I’m slipping back to that dark place I was in, just needed some friendly words of encouragement.”

The relief of sending such a simple message was immense, it lifted a heavy cloud from my heart, it may not have erased the pain or given me any respite from it, but it lifted my optimism, I finally began to realise that I am actually not alone, my situation here at home is one thing, it may feel like I’m alone in a full house from time to time, but there are people looking out for me, praying for me, pulling me through in times of pain and anguish, back then a year ago and then again just a few weeks ago following the death of my Nanna, my friends at Church were there by my side and praying for me and my family, they have been all along this journey.

I remember that morning in Church, not being able to move because of the pain, but not being able to sit still either, that hurt just as bad, I was in no mans land, there wasn’t a comfortable position at all, it really was grinding the life out of me, but I tried my best to stay positive, I failed sometimes, but I made it through.

When I feel I am alone at times, I get that message out the blue to ask how I am or how I’m doing, from James or any one of the great friends I have made or wonderful comments from my blog followers, who no matter what I write, you are there with your likes and great comments, I am no longer alone.

I felt it important to write about these feeling and the pain, I know many of my readers are recovering alcoholics who have probably been through a similar pattern of pain, but as do receive many hits from search engines with search terms like “withdrawals and recovery”, so to discuss this in detail is important to me.

Everyone has a different reaction to quitting drinking, some may not have experienced the pain like this, others may have experience pain far worse than mine, I actually think mine were quite mild considering, but at the time they were grinding me down, I wanted to recover and these were getting in the way.

Even if the world ignites into flames
You’ll be right here by my side
And as it burns away
You smile at me and say that
“Not even death could take me away from you…”
(World In Flames by In This Moment)