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Unread 02-17-2015, 05:10 PM   #1
Millie
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Hi everyone. Just wanted to introduce myself. I've tried to stop drinking several times over the years, but lately it seems like it's just stronger than I am. This is the first time I've ever reached out to a group, and it's pretty scary. I just need to stop, and it's never as easy as "just don't do it."

If anyone has words of wisdom, I'm all ears.
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Unread 02-17-2015, 05:29 PM   #2
lostdog
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Just take one day at a time. I'm glad your here and we can support you ,too. Lots of nice people will help you .
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Unread 02-17-2015, 05:32 PM   #3
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Thanks, lostdog.
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Unread 02-17-2015, 07:14 PM   #4
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Hi Millie

You are in the right place and you have made a right move. This is the fabulous group supporting people...I started here couple of months back, I am sticking to my routine. I keep chanting few sentences everyday, (you can see my thread on this forum)..

"One day at a time. I am responsible for my actions and their consequences. Think through the first drink".

This helps me and my brain to realize/registers what i need to do today. I take one day at a time. Don't think beyond that, just stay sober for today and do whatever it takes to be sober.

For me-- I had to keep my mind off drinking, I picked up activities - watching TV good interesting ones, I ate before the craving hits, eat what ever you love, sweets seem to kill the craving, I eat candy sometimes when cravings start...but these cravings reduce after sometime.

Your surroundings are very important. At least for initial days keep away from people and places who you associate with drinking.

Remember, you have only one liver and one body that God has given in this life, you are responsible to take care of it. Nobody else will.

talk freely here, express yourself, helps lower your burden, nobody is perfect, I am in the same boat. There are great people to help here....

Last edited by iamtrying; 02-17-2015 at 07:18 PM..
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Unread 02-17-2015, 08:02 PM   #5
Millie
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Thanks for your thoughtful response. One of the issues I have is that I've been treating it as a reward. Not on purpose, but the association is there. And I have been mainly drinking at home, so I can't really avoid it. I've actually tried to figure out an alternative reward system, but don't have much of a sweet tooth, so I'm trying to be creative. I am looking forward to getting better. Not very confident about it, but looking forward to cravings getting to be less.
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Unread 02-17-2015, 09:24 PM   #6
R. Lee
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Millie, Welcome to the site. I am a recovering alcoholic. I come in here to keep myself sober by offering a few suggestions to the person who wants to stop drinking.

It is so important that you made the effort to seek some help here. What you are doing is reaching out for help. Everyone one who has responded to you so far is a recovering person. The only person I can call an alcoholic is myself & I am an alcoholic who no longer drinks.

Tell us more about yourself. No one should judge you so feel free to open up.

The only advise I would make is if you want to stop drinking then you think through that 1st drink. If you have alcohol in the house dump it out so it will not be easy to get that 1st drink. Try it just for the rest of today. If it works then when you wake up tomorrow you can start all over again just worrying about the next 24 hours. Give that a try & let us know how you did.

I wish you the best!!

I look forward to hearing more from you.

Last edited by R. Lee; 02-17-2015 at 09:31 PM..
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Unread 02-18-2015, 12:42 PM   #7
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Millie, How are you doing?
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Unread 02-18-2015, 04:12 PM   #8
Millie
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Thank you for asking. So far, so good. I have never been a daily drinker, so it's the longer-term abstinence that is hardest. My pattern is after a few days of not drinking, I feel great and decide I want to, and then I overdo it. That first drink really is just a slope to non-control. So I expect the next few days to be the toughest. But I will try to take it day by day, of course.

About me, I'm in my 40s and work in an office part-time and play music part-time. Ironically, I don't drink at gigs. But on the way home from rehearsals and performances, the thought strikes me and I find myself at the store. And I don't keep any in the house, so I have actually made myself go get it each time... I have just had trouble talking myself out of it when the idea comes up. All rational thought seems to go out the window.

I will say that I am probably more motivated to stop than I have been in a long time, so I'm seeing that as a good thing.

Thanks for all your nice words, and for asking about me.
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Unread 02-18-2015, 04:50 PM   #9
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Welcome Millie!

Try and find something to replace the ritual of drinking. The 'triggers' that help convince us to use. Drive a different route home for e.g. Alcohol is poison for us. Change the way you think about alcohol. More importantly make sobriety the most important thing in your life. Think sobriety.
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Unread 02-18-2015, 08:14 PM   #10
R. Lee
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Millie, You realize that it is the 1st drink that will get you. You don't keep alcohol at home so it is a inconvenience to go & get. If you have a problem with alcohol then think through that 1st drink. Think of what you have done drunk & all the yets that are out there if you continue to drink.

For me I can not afford to drink. If I drink then I go back to the same self serving selfish person I was for the 1st 60 years of my life. I can not afford to do that so I think through that 1st urge to pick up.
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Unread 02-19-2015, 05:34 AM   #11
Tryntryagain
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Good morning Millie. Bright blessings to you.

Welcome to this amazing family! I am in my late 40's and i have been an alcoholic all my adult life. I thought when you said how motivated you were feeling, such a positive thing to hear! The older i get, the more i share with other alcoholics the more and more incredible stories of resilience and commitment. I think in the early days simply really wanting to be sober goes a very, very long way.

Here's a thought. I read you are a part time musician. I tinkle the ivorys myself, and you know those "confusing and coffuddled" thoughts we sometimes have around drinking? I found sometimes going to bash the piano or the other end of the scale strum a guitar really helpful in getting out emotional expressions in ways that work for me. Finding a release can be dreadfully important.

Here there is so much eclectic experience. Folk from all over the place! (I am in Blighty). Loads of fascinating lives, barn fulls of non judgemental understanding as our common ground is that everyone will understand. Different journeys, different lives, weather forecasts from around the world!, and we all come together in 1 place for the well being of us all.

Often just sharing and unravelling in a safe place, in your own time can work wonders!

Once again, welcome.

Be peaceful, be healthy and be strong. Loveness to you Millie
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Unread 02-19-2015, 10:01 AM   #12
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Dear Millie,

I made a list of the ways alcohol had hurt me and interfered with my life. I am a little hyper, so meditating is hard for me. Instead of meditating, which many do successfully to avoid drinking, I read my list every morning to remind myself why I don't want to drink, just for today.

When I quit smoking, I made myself remember how awful a brass ashtray smells every time I felt the urge to smoke. It's called aversive therapy, and it works for many people.

Good luck and keep us posted!

Susie
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Unread 02-19-2015, 10:23 AM   #13
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Millie, way to go on thinking and coming to this site. Remember, just one day at a time.
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Unread 02-19-2015, 11:37 AM   #14
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Hi Mille,

I rewarded myself for years by drinking...I thought I deserved it after working so hard and after achieving lot of things...that reward was consuming me. It was consuming my evenings, my next day mornings feeling like shit because of hangover, my early weekends....That reward was not a reward in fact I numbed myself from success, numbed myself from growing, numbed myself from going out, numbed myself from what I did last night other than I was passed out...mornings were surprising and WTF moments...

That reward made me the person who I was not or not I intended to be...Now, you be the judge was that reward right for me ?

But I am trying to be just better than what I was yesterday. I am trying it one day at a time. I am no expert ...but I try...

It will be hard initially, believe me it will only get better when you make up your mind and try to work on it to be sober. It's all in your head, nothing else. These are few things I have learned...

Have a great day Millie...stay safe and stay sober...There is a beginning for everything and again there is a beginning ...because beginning doesn't have an end...keep trying...
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Unread 02-19-2015, 01:44 PM   #15
Millie
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Thanks so much for all the responses. You guys seem like a great group of people.

You have some good ideas and good ways of thinking about it. Tryntryagain, I read your post in the other thread, and I could relate to soooo much of what you said. The self-destructive behavior, the world on your shoulders, going in circles. It all made sense. It's so complicated to pick out exactly why numbness is so attractive when it seems to be attractive in so many situations.

I want to drink when I'm sad, I want to when I'm happy. When I am afraid of failure, when I'm afraid of success. When I'm anxious about change, when I'm bored with stasis. And all points in between.

And a funny thing is that I run half marathons and stuff. Nobody would ever know. I did a half marathon about 3 weeks ago, and then nestled myself right into a little intermittent bender, drinking a bunch of wine every two or three days, and then culminating in a bit of a lost weekend last week, and that was (what I hope was) the final straw.

I do think I'm probably a bit anxious and/or depressed, but my counselor said she can only help me with that if I discontinue self-medicating. So, that's what I'm trying to stop. Because I want to really take care of the underlying issue, and take care of myself. I don't feel like I'm living, and I really want to get parts of myself back that I have subdued with this chemical.

So this is day three. I have a rehearsal tonight, so if I can just get myself home from that, I should have a complete day three. I'll keep all of your suggestions in mind. If you've read this far, I'm sorry this was so long, and thank you so much for listening.
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Unread 02-20-2015, 11:04 AM   #16
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Think through that first drink Millie. Change the way you think about alcohol. It is not OK for me to drink. It does not have a positive influence on my life. Instead it has severe negative ramifications. I do not want to live my life drunk and hungover. I choose to live my life sober and I love it. My worst day sober is better than my best day drunk.

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Unread 02-20-2015, 12:33 PM   #17
Tryntryagain
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Good evening Millie. Bright blessings to you.

How did rehearsals go?

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I think it may be of help to say that there are ways to guide you, although ultimately you will find your way. Support can only be a good thing, and as R Lee said on my thread, if i can try to be a good thing to myself.

Saint, i have tried to, but i simply have no answer to his chosen pathway. It really is about choice, and all the folk here are so accomplished and upstanding, it truly does hit home how difficult alcohol addiction is, and how it can cast its shadow on anyone. Saint now runs around the world at a rate of knots, the inspiration lies in the prospect of change. We can all do it Millie.

Be peaceful, be healthy and be strong. Loveness to you Millie
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Unread 02-20-2015, 12:38 PM   #18
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Good evening Millie. Bright blessings to you.

How did rehearsals go?

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I think it may be of help to say that there are ways to guide you, although ultimately you will find your way. Support can only be a good thing, and as R Lee said on my thread, if i can try to be a good thing to myself.

Saint, i have tried to, but i simply have no answer to his chosen pathway. It really is about choice, and all the folk here are so accomplished and upstanding, it truly does hit home how difficult alcohol addiction is, and how it can cast its shadow on anyone. Saint now runs around the world at a rate of knots, the inspiration lies in the prospect of change. We can all do it Millie.

Be peaceful, be healthy and be strong. Loveness to you Millie
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Unread 02-20-2015, 12:39 PM   #19
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(I do beg your pardon for the 2 posts, problems sending)
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Unread 02-20-2015, 07:21 PM   #20
Millie
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Rehearsal went well last night. Had one urge on the way home, and thought of you guys. That was such a great feeling.

Today I had a long conversation with a friend who also struggles with alcohol. We had abstained for a few months together a couple of years ago, before both deciding we were ready to try to drink again... We have both abstained for periods again. This time, I am deciding to stop, and he is deciding to give himself the choice "once in a while."

I was trying to explain to him why I come here instead of coming to him with my current struggles, and he couldn't understand until I said that the most important thing is knowing I'm not alone, that someone is doing this with me. Which he is not. It's a different state of mind, "I'm going to do it sometimes" versus "I'm NOT going to do it."

That was a hard conversation, and I learned a lot about why it is that I get upset when he has "just one or two." Because I wish that he was doing this with me. In the past it was nice to have someone so close going through the same thing. We are still good friends of course, but it was still hard. And to be honest, on the way home from this conversation, I thought about having a drink after tonight's rehearsal later. It was interesting to analyze that.

Weekends are also hard, and one is starting up. Now that I'm feeling great after my last little bender, this is the most dangerous time. I am going to have to keep myself very busy. I have this site linked on my phone so I can look at your encouraging words any time. That is so nice. Thanks again for being here.
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Unread 02-20-2015, 10:39 PM   #21
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Hi Millie, and welcome! Sorry I haven't posted sooner.

I totally "get" the wanting to drink whether happy, sad, bored, mad, glad....you name it! I agree with Saint about changing the way we think. For alcoholics, it is so easy to 'want to stop' when the remorse is there, shame, guilt, hangover, all that. However, as a bit of time passes, those terrible feelings and memories seem to fade away, and we are left with that memory of drinking that seemed positive. As hard as I can look in my own life, there just wasn't any positive surrounding drinking. Some people can have one or two and stop and not think about it at all. Some people cannot. People who do not have a problem with drinking usually do not wonder whether or not they have a problem with drinking.

You can do this, by "this" I mean staying sober this weekend. Keep yourself occupied and busy. Check in here. Write as much and for as long as you want. That's why we're here! We support each other, one day at a time. Take care! Jenm
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Unread 02-21-2015, 10:01 AM   #22
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Millie, Great job. It looks like you thought through that 1st drink. It is a simple message but not always easy to do.
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Unread 02-22-2015, 06:35 PM   #23
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nice job Millie, keep up the good work. To be sober and have recovery, it is a road to work, but one day at a time is the best approach for me.
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Unread 02-23-2015, 11:39 AM   #24
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Good afternoon Millie. Bright blessings to you.

You know when i first came here and joined the family, i had heard of course "a day at a time" and whatnot. It really wasnt for me. I didnt need to do it like that.

Oh yes i do.

You know you say when you are off the stuff and you feel "brill"? and that is a dangerous time? May i suggest it is because those of us that drink see alcohol as "our friend", and we want to include it when we are so very happy?.....Well, it wouldnt be the same without our friend yeah?

So ok, we drink. Make a complete fool out of ourselves at best and feel like shit the next day.

You are SOOOOO doing the right thing!

Be peaceful, keep focused and be patient. Loveness to you Millie.
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Unread 02-23-2015, 02:09 PM   #25
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That is very wise, Tryn! I was *just* thinking about why on earth, when I'm feeling so much better, I still would get that urge. And you are absolutely, absolutely right.

I'm happy to say I made it through the weekend. Had some performances and tried to recognize triggers as they came along. I have long alone time most Sunday evenings and get bored, and that has been a big time for just disappearing into it. Last night after an early gig, I thought I'd make myself productive to distract myself, but I just sat with the dog and watched the Oscars. And to my astonishment, it was perfectly okay. I had a fine time without drinking. It wasn't torture. And I remember every minute of it!

And not being hung over, I got an amazing amount of housework done on Saturday. Go figure.

So I guess this is day 7. This is the longest I've gone without in probably a year, and the first time I've showed up to work on Monday not hung over in a long, long time. My sleep is still suffering, and I know that poor sleep has been a HUGE trigger for me, so I'm particularly proud of getting through that so far without giving in.

I had stopped running for the past month because I didn't feel the same rush I used to, and had worked it so that I could run on days I didn't drink the night before... I went for a short run yesterday and noticed that the endorphin rush I used to get was right back. Alcohol had been dampening that.

I really want to thank you guys for being here, and for all of the wise words both to me and to each other. This forum is a huge reason I'm feeling optimistic right now, like I can do this. Like I *want* to do this. I hope you guys don't mind me sticking around for a while (rain or shine).
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Unread 02-23-2015, 02:14 PM   #26
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Millie, Congratulations on 7 days sober. Continue to think through that 1st drink. You can do this.
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Unread 02-23-2015, 06:24 PM   #27
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Read your post and had to send a Congratulations! You are doing great!
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Unread 02-24-2015, 10:07 AM   #28
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Millie..excellent..congrats!!...yes I agree, how much spare time you get to do lot of things....

have a great day my friend, stay sober and stay safe...
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Unread 02-24-2015, 10:12 AM   #29
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I absolutely love the kindness and genuine nonjudgmental support shown throughout these threads. So glad I discovered this site.
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Unread 02-24-2015, 01:30 PM   #30
Millie
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Thanks, everybody.

Last night I had a class, and got all the way home before realizing I hadn't even thought about stopping at the store on the way. That feels like a huge step, like the first real step in breaking the habit. The pattern has been that I would drink too much one night, feel terrible the next day and not drink, remember that the next day and not drink, then the third day I would feel good and start all over again. And then on weekends, if I didn't have a gig, all bets were off and I'd start Friday and just spend the weekend sipping to stave off the hangover. And of course my sleep cycle couldn't normalize after only two days, before destroying it again with more wine.

After 7 days, I think my sleep is finally starting to return to a nice, deep state (according to both me and my Fitbit!). Getting through the tiredness was *really* hard. This morning, it's an abnormally sunny day, and I woke up in a good mood. That never happens. I don't even remember this being quite so nice the last few times I took time off. This time I want it to be permanent.

My husband has been aware of my struggles, but he is one of those lucky people who can take it or leave it, and can have just one. So he doesn't understand falling down the rabbit hole, and has been supportive, but understandably helpless about what to do. I can't get over how much keeping this secret from the world has torn me apart and made it worse. So even though I'm not broadcasting this publicly, but just talking to you wonderful, kind people, I can't believe how much it has helped. I can't thank you enough.
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Unread 02-24-2015, 01:52 PM   #31
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Same here regarding your words below:

Millie wrote: "My husband has been aware of my struggles, but he is one of those lucky people who can take it or leave it, and can have just one....So even though I'm not broadcasting this publicly, but just talking to you wonderful, kind people, I can't believe how much it has helped. I can't thank you enough."

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Unread 02-24-2015, 03:32 PM   #32
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Millie, Glad that you made it home from class without thinking about stopping to get something to drink.

Congratulations on 7 days.
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Unread 02-25-2015, 10:53 AM   #33
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Millie,

I'm glad to be back in the groove and to hear how well you are doing! Keep it up!

Susie
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Unread 02-25-2015, 11:12 AM   #34
iamtrying
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Congrats Millie, good job...Yes, that is the pattern,

Drink -> feel like crap next day -> don't drink that day -> feel good next day drink again --> Repeat...

Basically, I broke that cycle, and the breaking point is at the first step --> Think thru the first drink and don't drink, none of them will follow....

Have a great day...
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Unread 02-25-2015, 12:56 PM   #35
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Good evening Millie. Bright blessings to you.

My goodness you are coming on some! You see that as may as your husband can take a drink, it doesnt work that way for you. Keep knowing that.

There is no need to tear yourself about "keeping it secret". Those that love you will know.

However, (this is a biggy!), as much as i kept my drinking a secret in my professional life, it "spilled over", (excuse the pun), and i kept it "secret" from myself. If i ignored it, it didnt effect me.

It did.

Dear Millie. "keeping this secret from the world has torn you apart". I am sure it has. It has so because as alcoholics we tend to be torn apart because we lie to ourselves. What is tearing you apart, is alcohol. I bet without it, you would pull yourself back together again just fine thank you.

Yes Millie, you have broadcasted it loud and clear, you are telling yourself you are doing the right thing.

You're darn right you are!!!

Be peaceful, be gentle with yourself and be strong. Loveness to you Millie
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Unread 02-25-2015, 01:45 PM   #36
Millie
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Good morning everyone.

8 days. I always sort of thought counting the days was silly, because I was interested in longer term abstinence. I now see the harm in not counting them. Taking it one day at a time is crucial.

I once did a fitness thing where in order to make an X on a calendar I had to exercise. My only job was to keep the chain of Xes on the calendar from breaking. This is like that.

There are times when I congratulate myself on another day, and think to myself, "That's silly, you're congratulating yourself on something that should be natural and easy." I realize now that for some, for me, it simply *isn't* natural or easy to not drink (and I come by it honestly -- my father was a lifelong alcoholic, and I thought that because I wasn't raised by him I would escape -- wrong, it's in the wiring).

Last night was hard as I had no class, no rehearsal, just went for a run and had dinner. Running makes me want a reward, and that in the past has been wine. So I had to think through that, and to my pleasant astonishment it passed. I'm surprised that my resolve has held on this long, and I owe that so much to the generous support I've found with you wonderful people. I'm noticing how very nice it is to not have to argue with myself daily, and I'm getting along with myself better than I have in a long time.

You guys rock.
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Unread 02-25-2015, 02:20 PM   #37
gmasusie
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So do you!
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Unread 02-26-2015, 01:09 PM   #38
Millie
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Good morning everybody.

9 days...
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Unread 02-26-2015, 03:00 PM   #39
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Millie, Congratulations on 9 days sober. Yes keep counting the days & post them. They help the new person who comes in & thinks they can not make it 1 day. You are an example on how it is done.
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Unread 02-26-2015, 03:02 PM   #40
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Millie, Congratulations on 9 days. Yes keep counting & posting your days. They help the new person who comes in here & thinks they have no chance ot not drinking for just 1 day.
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Unread 02-26-2015, 08:40 PM   #41
iamtrying
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Congrats on day 9 ....

I consider counting as reward for myself. I feel the sense of accomplishment...and also helps me to checkin and stay on track....
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Unread 02-26-2015, 11:49 PM   #42
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Congratulations! Every day is a victory... an opportunity to be sober and present in our lives.
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Unread 02-27-2015, 08:12 AM   #43
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Congrats, Millie! You are doing great! Jenm
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Unread 02-27-2015, 04:35 PM   #44
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Good evenig Millie. Bright blessings to you.

What a lovely thing to say Susie, ......"sober and present in our lives"....Quite so.

I am sending you my best wishes and strength, and hope at the time of writing this is day number 10?

It is hard to describe another alcoholics pride in anothers day of sobriety. R Lee says it keeps him sober. I get that..now, an awful lot.

Congratulations Millie, 1 day at a time.

Be peaceful, be healthy and be strong. Loveness to you Millie
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Unread 02-28-2015, 12:04 PM   #45
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Hey Millie,

How are you ? how are things going...
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Unread 02-28-2015, 12:15 PM   #46
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Yes Millie How are you doing.
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Unread 02-28-2015, 06:58 PM   #47
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Hi everyone. Thank you for asking about me! I have less computer access on the weekends, but still hanging in there.

Today is day 12, I think...
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Unread 02-28-2015, 07:04 PM   #48
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Great! It's just that we worry when we don't hear. Congratulations!
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Unread 02-28-2015, 08:11 PM   #49
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Millie,
Congrat's on 12-day's that Is Awesome. What I love about this Forum is that we can say thing's that we would never tell to a friend or family , with the likely hood of them throwing back in our face. Here everybody goes my a username so we can be completely honest.
Remember it is not only 1-day at a time , sometimes it is 1-hour, or 1/2-hour everyone is different.
I wish you the best on your Journery.
Remember someone is always here , seeing we are all from different part's of the country.
Congrat's again on 12-day's .
Gracie67
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Unread 02-28-2015, 08:18 PM   #50
Tryntryagain
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Good evening Millie. Bright blessings to you.

Nearly 2 weeks, congrats! This is such a safe and big place to sit with, i (dont trust anything by the way), but i trust everyone here implicitly. I came here in a mish mash of hurt, nonsense, anger and drunk as a skunk. "all out of sorts". In my own way, and life, i came to understand something was stoppng me being me. It took me such a long time. I looked behind everything to find what was stopping me being me. I looked around lamposts i had driven into, folk that i liked but cant quite remember their names, my little black book i had lost, so i came here empty of me, but full of everything else. Slowly but surely, the trust i have in this family here, and the trust they have in me, helps me find my way, and doing so, i can share me.

You know how you play music and whatnot?, it was not until i was 40 i played to me. Oh certainly your fingers do the talking, but when have they spoken to you? Just a thought.

Be peaceful, keep playing, there is a voice. Loveness to you Millie
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