What’s With the 30 Day Thing and Me?

Once again, coming up on my 30 day mark, I ended up pouring wine on Day 28. And rather than face the shame of another white chip in AA, I have just avoided the meetings for the past week. I know – not the most intelligent thing in the world. But in a few of the meetings after I last posted, I felt like everything was being done so “cookie cutter” – that “one size fits all”. I understand there’s a science to it and it has worked wonders for so many…but somehow it started to just not.feel.right.

Belle may be the sweetest person EVER. After a whining email to her, she sweetly reached out to me to ask how I was doing today. This prompted me to send her back an email, of which I have done some copying/pasting to form this blog. Part of me wanted to disappear from the blogging world for awhile – but I think it’s a much better idea to get back here and share where I’m at right now and continue to read stories from others to keep myself motivated and encouraged. Right now, I’m just not feeling those things.

I am having a bit of a pity party for myself b/c I had to report in on the 100 day challenge that I was back to Day one. In the email I sent to her, I sounded like such a “whiner” – like I’m somehow different than others and I should be allowed a hall pass or something.

I do agree that it’s easier to just quit than to moderate, but in some sick, twisted way, I have just wanted to escape these past few days. There were some more run-ins with my brother, but I can’t blame him for how I choose to respond. As you would imagine, I haven’t been doing my early morning gym, and I’m quite the non-motivated one for work, so I already see the negatives once again. My poor husband is totally confused – he is incredibly supportive no matter what, and I think he was really liking the “new me.” Hell – I was really liking the “new me” and in just a few short days, I feel like I already look tired and just not as healthy as I was.

I’m trying to figure it all out. Maybe I was seeking external approval that I didn’t get – that after 60 days (give or take just a few), I expected people to tell me how great I look. The scale has remained evil (muscle weighs more than fat – it just must) and though my clothes do feel better, I was surprised that by eliminating THOUSANDS of calories each week and adding in HUNDREDS of minutes of exercise each week, there wasn’t more of a result. I know that wasn’t the main goal, but it was always on my mind.

The plus side – in the 60 days minus a few – I was NEVER drunk – just had enough to “take the edge off” – but I could see it increasing just a little bit each time. Just trying to look at the glass as half full 🙂

I do want to get back on track. I know all it takes is one day…and then two…and then slowly but surely it’s in the weeks again. And then, Praise God, maybe I’ll actually hit a freakin’ month.

My therapist and I have talked a lot about the progress vs. perfection issue that I have – I can’t seem to acknowledge the efforts I put in if they are not perfect. And part of it that aggravates me was that I was finally getting to the point where I was realizing how far I really had come, even with a few slips, but I felt that the AA group would only see my failures. Yep – the people pleaser in me. UGGGGH.

I know – this is a lot of crap to have to read. Especially with how awesome so many people are doing on the challenge. I’m disappointed in myself, I also hate feeling like I’m disappointing others. Belle is nothing but encouraging and awesome and I just wish I could reach across the miles and give her a giant hug.

I am definitely going to want to jump back in – I guess I just need to do some serious thinking of my goals/plans/steps so that I don’t set myself up for failure again.

I realy appreciated the email she sent me. It meant so much. As much as I’ve been “mad at” the people in my AA group, only one has reached out to me to see how I am, even after missing close to a week of meetings. And I RARELY missed them in the past. Silly rationalizing, I know 🙂

SO…I will be reaching out to soon to re-join the challenge. I may have to start it as a 10 day challenge to rebuild some momentum. Hell – maybe even a one day challenge each day for the first week. I just don’t have the resolve I had and I need to GET THAT BACK. I need to want it more than anything (or I guess in this case NOT want it).

I hope this somehow made sense in some way. Just know that you are all admired and respected and appreciated. And HUGE KUDOS to Belle!!! 🙂

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8 thoughts on “What’s With the 30 Day Thing and Me?

  1. Oh, I’m sorry to hear you’re wavering. But, you know what? The most recovering I’ve done has been through my trial-and-error slips. Really. I still want to drink, a lot of the time (especially the past few days, when I’ve been feeling like my literal brain hurts). But, I don’t want to drink more. What I’ve found is, I have to really want what being sober brings…and could bring. Look at all its brought you so far? Imagine the future!

    Plus: ALL your sober days count; they all add up in your sober bank. And, the more you exercise that “sober muscle” (of resisting the urge to drink, whether it’s just a glass or a full-on binge), the stronger it gets.

    What I love about this sobersphere (versus AA, in particular) is that there is no one way to get sober. No one-size-fits-all “program.” It’s whatever works for you.

    You got this!

    • Thanks DDG! I really am trying to exercise the sober muscle. I do find that once you get sucked back into the “other world” it is harder to come back, so I won’t make the same mistake (I hope) again of multiple days in a row. I’m working on my plans and can happily say that I did not drink last night. So at least I’m on my way…

  2. it’s unfortunate but i think that there may be a perfection thing that’s helpful when you quit drinking. I would agree with your therapist if we were talking about how many days in a row you make your bed …

    But every time you drink, you wake up wolfie, and have to – to some extent – start again. it’s not all the way back to square 1 starting again, but it’s probably 50% starting over (at least, it seems like that from what others have written, especially DDG, on this subject).

    if you drink, wolfie is awake, AND he has learned that if he tortures you, you will give in. you have to shut the fucker up. (imagine a 3 year old throwing a tantrum. if you give that fucking child candy in the grocery store, good luck ever going for groceries again without there being candy. sure it CAN be done, but it’s waaay harder than avoiding the situation entirely. )

    The upside of relapse, if there is one, is that you learn what NOT to do again (and in this way, it IS progress). whatever you were doing before wasn’t enough. over time, you learn to see wolfie coming from further away, and you learn to make changes quickly and swiftly and definitively to avoid collision. this still happens for me. I have a series of low days, I feel an antsy ‘I want to drink’ thing starting up, and I blog about it, I tell someone — even my husband. I do something proactive like pour out the booze in the house … or whatever. I start running every day until I’m sure the feeling has passed, then I go back to normal. sometimes wolfie is silenced with one email, but sometimes it takes a few blogs and a few long runs and a couple of good crying spells.

    whatever it takes.

    • As I have mentioned via email and I will make note here, THANK YOU! I absolutely love the analogy about the fucking candy in the store for the toddler. I am literally behaving like a toddler – wah, wah, wah. As always, great words of wisdom!!

  3. Hope you’re feeling a bit better. You CAN do this. If you feel like AA isn’t working right now is it worth considering anything else, like Smart Recovery maybe? Just a thought.

    • Ironically, there is a Smart Recovery group on Thursday nights. It’s a little farther than I’d like to go, and I hate that they don’t have morning options, but from what I am seeing, there are only a handful of meeting options in our entire state. I may just check that out tonight as it has been recommended more than once.

  4. Sorry to hear about the slip there. but glad you’re back – many of us don’t make it back, of course. And you posting here and emailing Belle is a step in the right direction – shame and remorse can keep us out, and you’re getting past that. As for the AA group, they won’t judge you. You have no idea how many people don’t get it on the first shot. I certainly didn’t. And speaking of the AA group, i can’t remember, but did you have a sponsor and/or started to work the steps? Going to meetings is great, but it’s in working the steps that we get the freedom we crave and need from this alcoholism. I have worked with several men, and the ones who are working the steps have stayed sober. the others who have dropped off the radar…well, frankly I don’t know where they are or what they’re doing (prayers out). Things don’t have to be like this – the almost or 30 days and then back out, etc. It’s not fun. 😦

    Blessings,
    Paul

    • I know the people in the group are good folks – it’s my ego that’s keeping me from going back. Maybe I’m wanting to string together at least a few days before going back. Do I HAVE to get another white chip or can I just have my day count in my head and go with that? Do I HAVE to publicly announce my slip? I’m sure everyone would basically know. And yep – you are right. I do not have a sponsor, though I did start working the steps. I do understand the importance of a sponsor, but more importantly, I think I want to do some self exploration of the steps on my own first. Even if I don’t do them “right” the first time, I’d like to simply go through them on my own first. I KNOW the program recommends one, but at the rate I’m going, I just don’t want to be a hopeless project for someone. I know…that is not how THEY would see it. Let me try to tweak some things and see what my next steps are. As always, thank you!

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