Nerves and surprising unconscious urges near six months

Hi you guys, need a bit of accountability today. I’ve so far been majorly blessed with what feels like a relativley effortlessly achieved sobriety. My life is two thousand times better than when I was still drinking. I’ve also been battling with heavy depression and crippling anxiety for more than half of my life and this also has so unexpectedly significantly improved that I do not even ever consider going back to drinking, never think one day in the future I might be able to moderate, I don’t miss it - even though I loved it, even though I still work as a barmaid, even though a lot of the issues it “helped me deal with” (obvs not)/issues I responded to with drinking are still there. I’m a happy, growing, optimistic girl these days, no longer a shell of a person.
That said, I’m approaching my 6 months mark next week and am experiencing some unsettling and frightening moments. I’ve read on this forum and heard from other people who’ve been sober for ages then went back out mindlessly. Who had a drink for no reason, who went out to the shops to get booze despite old habits and routines having seemed broken, who seemingly in a lapse acted as if they were still drinkers even though they were not and had not been for a long(ish) time. I never really could relate to these stories, but these days I experience a mute, inexpressive part of myself that seems to nudge me to take a sip, have a glass of wine at work like in the olden days, buy that pocket vodka from the tabacco shop as usual - as if the last six months never had happened! I feel as if there is a shadow faugxh, independent of my conscious me, trying to become dominant, while consciously I have no desire to drink, no craving, nothing. Last night at work I poured some leftover secco away with such urgency and fear as if it was on fire or infested with maggots or sth.
One last dimension of this is that I am in psychoanalysis since shortly before my sobriety date, and the therapy is working deeply in me and is just now getting seriously to business, looking at where it really starts to hurt and where one really doesn’t want to go. But has to.
I even, without meaning to and without actually believing it said to my therapist, how an ongoing problematic situation with my bf and I is endangering or at least making my sobriety harder for me. I even wanted to take this statement back immediately as I don’t really feel endangered, I feel really quite stable in my sobriety. But this weird slip of tongue, the shadow me I cannot trust, the silly nerves around six months (why?), the fact I already know by heart the aa meetings schedule of my neighborhood (so far not been, never needed to, but am now seriously considering to add another weapon to my arsenal! Will go this week, I have already decided, really.), It’s a weird combination of circumstances I would like people’s opinions on, have you experienced similar things? I am afraid something will happen and I will take a drink despite not wanting to, I am creeped out and feel I can’t trust myself (not how I usually feel about myself at all!)

Thanks for reading! Have a great day all and go strong! :green_heart::boar:

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It’s great to see you reaching out. Yes these people’s experiences are there for us to read and in a way take note of because it makes us aware of what could happen to us.
The emphasis on could!
Once we start to have these thoughts and feelings ourselves we can then see them for what they are just thoughts and feelings that are not real. The reality is where you are now. Sober.
If you’ve been reading around then you may have heard of what I call Milestone malady. Which is something a lot of people experience around milestones like you are for your six months.
My advice, stick to what you are doing and don’t let these thoughts and feelings rent any space in your head. Don’t let your guard down because your addict brain has not finished with you yet, even though some days it seems easy!

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Just get through the six Month barrier - I am sure the feelings will go then and you can look back on what you’ve achieved by doing this with pride. Then if the same feeling comes up at say one year you can remember what you achieved at six Months. You know you can do it and we’re all routing for you - stay strong as you’ve done so well :+1:

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Hi Geoff thanks for your advice. Yeah it seems to be a bout of the milestone malady alright. You’re right, I’ve always been a person for whom feelings and thoughts were sorta just as real as events and actions, but in recovery I need to draw the line thicker. I do experience they are separate things, and I perceive the part of me for which alcohol is still close as alien and shadowy and haven’t acted on it - but this distinction feels new and strange to me. Something to learn and practice on!
I will keep doing what I’ve been doing so far and try to be alert to addict mind tricks. :fist::boom:

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Thank you for your empowering words. Keep on and not to be deterred by nerves seems to be the motto. I hope what you predict will come true, one year, and I can build on and learn further from my experiences so far. Thank you! :brain::muscle:

No problem at all - stay strong :muscle:

I have to agree with everyone about the milestone madness. For ME, this was caused by expectations. I didn’t even know I had them, I couldn’t figure out what they were, but they were eating me alive. In the end they were my perfectionist side coming out. A small, but powerful, part of my brain kept saying that I should be stronger, that I should be so much farther along in my recovery. You will get through this, you are strong enough. Let this be practice for the 1 year mark, because that one was the biggest bitch for me.

Also, the working on mental health issues tends to open up fear inside of us. This is normal! That fear transfers over to other things, and for us, it transfers over to our recovery. I still have days when I’m really stressed where I get paranoid about relapsing. Mostly for absolutely no reason.

As you get more and more time behind you things like this become less common. I can’t figure out if its because, for me, I just tell the thought to fuck off and I’m done with it and don’t think about it again, basically of my coping skills make it seem so easy that I don’t even realize I’m having the thoughts, or if they are almost non existent anymore. I believe its the former.

Keep your head up, girl. If you need to take a few days off work to distance yourself from a dangerous situation, well, consider doing it. Only you know what you need. But we can certainly help you figure it out!

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2,3 days to go for 6 months and I have had an “annoying” week (right @geo) and now a sick week. So yeah I recognize some.
I do go to meetings twice a week. It helps lots.
It’s a reflection tool as also a way to talk out loud about just the things you shared about.
I hope you’ll enjoy them. Be open give it a shot :muscle:t2:

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I think this played a big part in my “annoying” ( @ThajokerNL :joy:) experiences.
Just when we feel like we are gettin somewhere all these doubts and worries surface to knock us back.
Things are pretty stable now I’ve gone over the year.

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The thing to remember is that these are things that all hoomans go through with just about everything. It’s just more personal for us because our focus is centered around improving EVERYTHING.

These feelings still have the ability to overwhelm me, but I don’t let them anymore. Eyes front and center, not everywhere else, is the key for me.

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Then this… Coming up on a 180 a dear fellow said… No 180 isn’t 6 months :thinking::thinking::thinking::thinking::thinking:
It didn’t get to me this Is my counter and I’ll follow it.

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I celebrated the numer of days months and the calendar months. I used to be so confused about how I was “supposed” to count and celebrate, so I said fuckit and did both. :laughing:

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I can totally relate to the voices you describe. I still get them now and then. But what helps me is meetings and working a program, as I have a place to go and people to share those feelings with and to hear other people’s perspectives of how they fought against it, or what happened to those that didn’t. These are all very powerful tools that help to keep me sober :slight_smile:

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The perfectionist thing is crazy. I usually am pretty happy with my progress and often feel immensely grateful. Yet I notice I’m still judging and expecting and disappointing the hell outta myself at the same time, just not always noticing. Making life really hard for myself still. I used to think this was normal for everyone. It’s still a powerful thought that it’s not and I can actually work on and change this behaviour/attitude! Thanks for the reminder, Megan! I also really like the idea of taking charge and telling your thighs to fuck of. A big big lesson for me to learn still!

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Do you think these feelings are different for … Alcoholics? Addicts? Recovering addicts? Are they not centered around improving everything for other ppl, in yr experience?

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That’s what I’ll do. My proper one will be the calendar date though.

Thank you aircircle, I also look forward to see what this will do for me and what I’ll be able to do there! :slight_smile:

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Ha! I’m so glad to read this. Tomorrow is 180 and I’m celebrating myself and accomplishments tomorrow. My partner only remembers the calendar months however and has planned some surprise for me next Monday.

@Faugxh Just wanted to say congratulations on how far you’ve come. I think you’re in a really great place just being willing to acknowledge instead of avoid how you’re feeling. Therapy is hard work. It’s smart to keep awareness around how it’s affecting things in your life. Adding more tools to the sober arsenal is never a bad idea. Don’t forget to acknowledge how great you are doing.

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Thank you Jane.c for the kind words! Congratulations to you too, wonderful accomplishment! I know how happy you must be, same as me! :slight_smile: I am also planning a nice evening to celebrate with my man on the day, next Thursday. Enjoy and stay strong always! XX

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This literally came up in my sobriety video yesterday. It said the important thing to remember is thoughts, cravings are just feelings, they can’t make u DO anything. Only u can DO something. They are all bark and no bite. So just recognize them and then keep doing what u are doing, ie, not doing ur doc.

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