Recovery Advocate

Months 14-16

Months 14-16

Months 14-16 saw the end of summer and fall in its beauty. I was able to enjoy fall more this year because I spent less time reeling from the constant waves of symptoms experienced the previous summer and fall.

I spent the summer and fall in service secretarying meetings and sponsoring other alcoholics and addicts. One such service was going to a local treatment center on Monday nights and walking patients in the facility through the 12 steps.

During late fall, I was able to participate in a “Back to Basics” course offered by one of the local fellowships and walk a sponsee through the 12 steps in four weeks.

As to waves and windows, the windows clearly have the advantage these days but each morning about the 5 o’clock hour, I wake up fully amped with anxiety. My teeth chatter as I shake and twitch as zapps of energy pour through my body.

Attempts to regain sleep are nil and about 6:30, I get up and take my dog for a walk for about 3 miles. This seems to set the anxieties and symptoms at bay until mid-afternoon. Walking twice a day for about 3 miles each walk has helped my symptoms stay in check and have help keeping me healthy for the most part.

At 16 months, I must admit that overall, I am far better than I was in early recovery.  Waves are fewer and less intense and windows are more enjoyable and last longer.

I have become in tune with my body and discovered a few things that are noteworthy.

Lacking in water and being somewhat dehydrated usually causes a bout of heart palpitations as does ingesting the nutrient supplement magnesium.

I experience more pronounced episodes this late in recovery of nausea that last for hours at a time.  Using the Zofran does not help as much as it did in the beginning but Pepto-Bismol usually quietens the symptoms.

The kind of psycho-babble I experience today is about pancreatic cancer and other kinds of morbid reactions to continuous symptoms as my brain is still healing. I am not so much in thought about death and dying but now the attention is on other causes of symptoms that are not related to benzodiazepine withdrawal – which apparently do not exists since I am still in withdrawal.

There are times I wish that a test would turn out positive so I can justify my symptoms and rationalize what I am feeling but the reality is that the brain heals very slowly and there is quite a bit of uncertainty and unpredictability when it comes to the how’s and why’s of how the body heals.

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