Moving on?


#1

Does anyone else worry about moving on? I’ve reached a place where I want to start moving on with my life, re focusing and not having being sober at the forefront of my mind every second of every day, but I’m scared to do it. That might sound like oh here we go, she’s going to relapse and that’s not it at all, that’s the last thing I want. I’m still on TS every morning and every evening and often in between and I will carry on doing so, I have absolutely no intention of drinking ever again. My time with alcohol services is completed and my one to one counselling has finished so essentially TS is my therapy now, I feel like this is enough right now but I am a bit scared of myself as I know it doesn’t take long for our thought patterns to start changing.
I want my life to be centred around my children and my family but obviously to keep my sobriety a priority. I go out regularly, I have not changed any of the places I go or people I see, none of these were triggers for me as I liked to drink alone and I want to continue to live a “normal” life but as a person who doesn’t drink.
How do other people manage this? Is it “safe” to continue without focused input like counselling?


#2

Sometimes change is hard as we addicts are uncomfortable with change and like habits. Sometimes we have to just take leaps in life and do our best to stay focused on our goal. Doors will never open if we dont knock or open them. In times like these meditation , believing in yourself, be confident and pray. Its scarey sometimes but some how if we strive and really put effort in it is hard to fail. Sometimes its good to feel uncomfortable use that energy to drive you to succeed.


#3

I’m almost two months sober and I feel the same way. It’s a little easier for me because alcohol literally destroyed my life. I’m 28 and have liver cirrhosis. Therefore, if I pick up a drink I could potentially die. That’s my motivating factor. For other people going through recovery, I feel like it’s okay to not let your addiction control your life but don’t let yourself forget about it. Know your triggers. Remember that your addiction wants you in a dark room, alone, where it can convince you to do what you’re supposed to do. In reality, your addiction wants you dead. With that being said, if you know yourself well enough you should be aware when you begin to start falling back into your old habits. Isolating, not answering phone calls, becoming “ok” with your addiction. It’s okay to feel scared when the worriness fades, that’s when you should worry and that’s why AA is there. Attend meetings, make sure to still have a sponsor on call but it is possible to live life with your addiction and not let it control you! Best of luck :grinning:


#4

“It’s okay to feel scared when the worriness fades”

Thank you for this @mleclaire, that’s exactly what I’m doing, I’m worrying that I’m not worrying about it enough.
I know my triggers and can identify them in advance, I knew this past weekend was going to be a tough one for various reasons and it was but I was prepared and got through with just a few niggling thoughts but nothing to spend to much time concentrating on. The focused counselling and alcohol services has been a safety net and I’m just scared to trust in myself, even when I’ve proved I can :confused:


#5

I have 765 days sober and I also did not change the people I socialize with or that we often throw parties where people drink or that we vacation with drinkers etc. For some people, that is necessary, but for where I am at in life (older and not in the bar socializing scene), it wasn’t necessary for my sobriety.

Several months ago I took a hiatus from TS because it felt like I was focusing too much attention on reading about drinking and relapses and slips and drugs…along with issues I had with the ‘tone’ of TS (which has improved)…and I did not want to be so focused on alcohol in general. I know for many that doesn’t work, but I follow what works for me.

If you are feeling worried, that indicates to me you might not feel 100% solid…so for me, I would be sure I was on here a lot or adding something to my recovery plan that helped me feel solid. Perhaps more reading or meditation to quiet your worried mind?

It is good you are cognizant and asking the questions. Do you feel like you have a strong sober toolbox and muscles? If not, pump them up. Do what works for YOU. :hugs:


#6

Thank you for your reply, I was very confident with my plan but that included counselling and meetings with a key worker at Alcohol Services, both of those have now finished and I guess that’s what’s got me worried. I also had to stop taking Antabuse due to side effects, I’m ok with that as I knew my time with it was done, it had provided me a safety net the first few months and I needed to strengthen my own muscles but I guess not having any of these tools now has left me a bit scared. I’m going to get back into sobriety reading and I’m on here a lot at the moment anyway. I’ve always felt like I didn’t want to do AA but maybe now my toolkit is a little depleted it’s time?!


#7

Why not try it out if you are curious? Can’t hurt is my thought! Anything that adds to the toolbox is a plus in my mind. :heartpulse:


#8

I swear by AA. A lot of folks have a difficult time with the general “tone” saying all paths lead to God. But my experience has been lots of people find the higher power to be the group itself, their support system, etc. There have been many phases in my walk with sobriety when I lost one tool or another for various reasons. I just beef up my toolbox and carry on. Which is exactly what you are inquiring about! I’m sure you will do great and I’m very proud of you!


#9

Yes, and no. Yes, I worry about losing focus, but I understand that we have different seasons in life, change as individuals, and changing circumstances.

Sober is part of who I am now. I am quite confident in my ability to say “no” to the drink that matters…the first drink, for the rest of my life. I am free, but understand that the price of this freedom is eternal vigilance. I must be on-guard for that first thought : I could have just one. If I say “no”, then my sobriety stays intact. If I say “yes”, then all bets are off.

Not long ago I set a rather arbitrary date of 2 years sobriety, before I will consider “moving on”. Moving on would mean not coming on here at least once a day. Today is 500 days since the last time I said “yes” to a drink. My activity tracker also has me coming here for 500 days. I acknowledge the relationship between my sobriety and this forum.

So, I think it’s OK to think about that day when sobriety doesn’t require #1 priority, as long as you remain vigilant and are committed to putting it back at #1 at the first sign of weakness.


#10

Thank you for this, it’s been about six weeks now since I finished counselling and alcohol services. I still come here everyday and have not even considered not doing so, I know this forum is a massive part of my sobriety and don’t intend to let that go. I am confident in my ability to say no to the first drink and wherever possible will identify any triggers in advance and prepare for them, (I know it’s not always possible like when my neighbour knocked on the door with surprise “thank you for rescuing the cat” wine recently!)
This last weekend I knew would throw in a few triggers and I was perfectly able to say no having visualised it in advance. I think it’s as you say maintaining vigilance and putting sobriety back at #1 when it’s necessary as I did last weekend. Losing focus is my biggest fear right now


#11

I was reading down, thinking of my reply when I read @Yoda-Stevie’s. He’s pretty much said what I was going to say.
I am staying focused, but as sobriety is now who I am I am confident in saying no to the first drink.
I do worry about loosing the focus, but I think that is good because it keeps me focused, if you see what I mean?:grinning:
I was just thinking about this literally just know. I can no more see me having a drink, as I can see me going to mars. My mindset now is one of a non-drinker. But I won’t ever forget why I’m now a non-drinker.
You are a strong girl Shell. Have some faith in yourself, I have.
Crack on girl :grinning:


#12

Sure! Even as I approach 11 months of sobriety, my focus on it still remains very much at the forefront of my existence. Lately I have been thinking about the eventual transition away from it being a focal point for me, which includes being less active on the forum. However, I know what I need for continued success, and I know that this place is a part of it. I also know that keeping it at the forefront is what works for me, at present.

I have no doubt in my mind that I won’t drink. At this point it just isn’t even appealing to me on any level, and I am better suited for a life free of it. However, not quite ready yet to spread the ol’ wings and leave the nest, so to speak.

I think that the pace one “moves on” into the next level of sober life is highly individualized. Seems like the sort of thing that when you know, you know.


#13

Like everything in life, if you let it happen, it will happen and you won’t even notice it. One day you’ll think Omg! Something has changed!:grinning:


#14

I have the same mentality. I personally refused to let my addiction or sobriety prioritize my life. Making my life center around sobriety, wasn’t a happy life for me either. I know it can sound controversial… but, I couldnt imagine centering my life around sobriety or addiction. Everything in moderation. Granted in the beginning it was my goal to focus how to stay away from the bottle. I learned the knowledge and wisdom of that task, and with God by my side I gave that worry to him. We all grow in life if we keep the right balance in life; physically, mentally and spiritually.

Always be aware of pitfalls, and the fact your addiction never goes away. You learn to recognize it, and take the necessary safeguards.


#15

Thank you it’s really helpful to know that other people have these thoughts too. Sobriety is very much a part of me now but I was starting to think do these thoughts mean I’m slipping? and when I think about it you’re right, worrying that I’m not focused enough is keeping me focused right on it!


#16

After a while being sober becomes apart of your life .today i dont drink i attend meetings not as many as i did many years ago .the longer your sober the easier it becomes as the song goes kay sera wish you well


#17

Just thought I would provide my perspective. I am no way saying you are me or that Goat’s way is the right way or similar to anyone else. It is just what I have learned about me so far from loads of therapy with an addiction specialist (who doesn’t push AA as the only answer) and from the structure of self-examination that AA provides, as well as what I have picked up along the way in learning from others – something I could never do before.

Goat is an alcoholic. Goat could drink with the best of them and wouldn’t think twice about putting down a fifth or a liter a night. To be blunt, I was generally a nightly binge drinker – but I held down a life, so I didn’t have a problem, right? I went from that to stopping pretty much all together. I pretty much lost all physical and mental compulsion to drink when I put the bottle down. It took a couple days for my rational mind to understand that but it followed along shortly there after. If i am being honest – getting to that point was not as difficult for me as it is for others. I was truly blessed in that aspect of this disease. Even with that – I do not believe that I have this thing down such that I don’t have to work at it daily right now.

For me, after putting the bottle down came choosing between abstinence (not drinking and drugging) vs. sobriety (which to me goes beyond that). What I realized, for Goat, was that alcohol was symptom of a much much bigger problem for me. In other words, Goat had masked the other fundamental core problems in his thinking and approaches to life with drinking. I could only see these issues and understand that once I came out of the alcoholic fog that surrounded me.

Could I stay dry (abstinent) – maybe. But I was going to be a miserable son of bitch if I didn’t address the underlying causes of my drinking. How long could I remain a miserable son of a bitch before I went back to my old tool kit – all the vodka i could put in my mouthhole. Sure I could tell myself I wouldn’t do that – but thinking my way out of things didn’t work so well the last time. Was that a chance I was willing to take? For me it wasn’t.

This meant I couldn’t get by with a house cleaning, I needed a gut renovation at a minimum on the inside. For me, that gut renovation doesn’t come with just an alcohol class, a few therapy sessions, making a few AA meetings, or even just completing the steps to satisfy a requirement. I needed to fumigate, begin diagnosis, demolish, shore up the foundation and then begin to rebuild (while continuing to be on the look out for newly developed defects in construction). The things I continue to learn about myself in this process — not only surprise me, but surprise those who have known me for decades.

While I know that one day, things will be easier and not as intense, I will never “have” this. Sobriety isn’t something you get, it is earned. What you have to do to earn it is different for different people. But I know, the second I stop doing the work or rest on my laurels, everything that I have worked for could disappear even if i don’t pick up a drink or drug because I think like an alcoholic.


#18

Thee questions:

  1. Is whatever you are doing working to keep you sober?
  2. Are you happy?

If you answered yes to both…

  1. Why fix it if it isn’t broken?

#19

Thanks for this, your last paragraph is my concern. I know I will never totally “have” this and that the part of my mind that thinks as an alcoholic isn’t going to magically disappear no matter how far along I am on my journey of self discovery. I’ve done a lot of stripping down and rebuilding and know I have a long way to go, I have no intention of stopping. Nothing has changed in my mindset now that my counselling and alcohol support has come to an end, I guess I’m just worrying that it could, but I also guess that worry in itself is keeping me vigilant right now


#20

Thank you

  1. Yes it it
  2. Yes I am
  3. You are absolutely right, I’m worrying that I’m not worrying, that’s a bit mad in itself!

I’ll keep going and remain vigilant for any cues that I need to ramp up my programme :blush: