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Old 01-03-2008, 06:47 AM   #1
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"we can't think our way into thinking right...."

Hello Guys

I am borrowing words here that came from Readytobedone that was something told to her by an oldtimer at a meeting... "we can not think our way into thinking right, we have to act our way into thinking right." I hope Ready will share with that oldtimer what an impact those words had on me. He put into words something that was such a truth for me over the past year with such simple clarity.

I was such a mess, a non-functioning wreck in fact, when I began the tapering from ocycodone and xanax. I couldn't think straight in the depression and withdrawals by any stretch of the imagination. Nothing felt good... everything felt bad.... in my body, my mind and my very soul. My thinking was shot, non-functioning, non-existent. If I had had to depend on thinking my way into life again, I would not be here today. I had to act. Act according to what doctors and folks on the board were telling me to act. I had to keep cutting back on the meds, I had to go out and walk, I had to bear the horrible withdrawal symptoms and allow them to happen. I had to do. If I could have thought my way out of depression, I would have worked on it 24/7. It is just not a possibility. It is the actions that allowed the thinking to start again. It was the actions that allowed the thinking not only to happen, but to happen in a new way. It changed! It changed to recognize, sloooowly, that a 5 minute walk was progress, that I could accomplish goals even if they were tiny ones. Oh, it was a long haul to thinking again and in a new way, but then again, it took a heck of a long time to get to the horrible state I was in.

I think that as we walk slowly into addiction, our thinking changes by our actions. It changes into thinking we can not survive without the drugs. I sincerely believed that being on narcotics was going to be a lifelong thing for me. That was how I was thinking before I fell and totally lost the ability to think anything out anymore. I was only acting on bad insticncts in the end that I had allowed to be a part of me. Sad in many ways, but something that has also brought me to new thinking, new understanding of myself and my part in the world.

I think well again now. I don't always feel like balancing a checkbook, maybe, but I can do it again. I don't always feel like taking the time I need to to deal with the pain in the basic ways like rest and ice, but my mind now directs me to do so. I can see happiness as it occurs now and enjoy it immensley. I can see sadness or strife and deal with it without pills anymore. My head feels clear again, it is thinking right because I acted on the things that would make this happen. It was rote, the actions, doing as I was told and praying to God that it woukld be the answer and it was.

For those still struggling, whatever point you are presently in, keep acting on the things that oldtimers like Ready's friend shared. Keep acting on them and slowly the thinking will change, the thinking wioll get right because the results start happening. Let the actions of withdrawal proceed even if it stinks. Keep staying off the drugs and the thinking about them will change, not because we will them to change, but because we acted proactively to change them. The will to change our thinking occurs as we find the will to act on finding recovery. When the way seems so complicated, so hard, remember this oldtimer's simple words and truth...

"we can not think our way into thinking right, we have to act our way into thinking right."


Thanks Oldtimer
reach

 
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:34 AM   #2
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Re: "we can't think our way into thinking right...."

that is such a powerful statement. As I am beginning the tapering/withdrawing process, I have come to really look forward to being able to enjoy those little moments of clarity that you have come to see. I am not there right now, but I can act on what this board gives me, my doctors and therapist. I have hope, hope that I will one day be able to say life is much better without the pills. The will to be clean is there. My thinking is still strange, but I cling to this board, those words and hope.
With all my heart
Mary Pat

 
Old 01-03-2008, 11:30 AM   #3
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Re: "we can't think our way into thinking right...."

Reach,
Without you, I don't know what any of us would do.. Your insightfulness is amazing. I've often wondered why some days I will feel fine, then others I just want to go and bury my head under the covers. It doesn't make sense to me how one day you feel one way and then the next another. This depression/anxiety thing is playing with me and I don't like it. I have however tapered down to 4mgs of suboxone for the past 2 days, going on 3. And I jumped from 6! I couldn't believe it was that easy. But there goes what Reach quoted.. we have to act, and not think. It was as simple as that. It's not a piece of cake, and a part of me is saying to go ahead and take another mg, it won't hurt!! Just to wake me up and give me a boost.. but It will hurt. So I'm on this board talking instead of doing what my brain's telling me to do. I just wanted to say thank you Reach, for even after a year clean, you still come on here to encourage us. It's appreciated more than you know.

Brandi

 
Old 01-03-2008, 12:51 PM   #4
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Re: "we can't think our way into thinking right...."

Reach --as I come upon my 2 months your words hit me REALLY hard. I am super confused and made at myself right now. I havent relapsed but I have thought bad things. How to get, where to get, when to get, its driving me crazy! I wish this would stop and last year, the right thing to do was to USE. My mind is NOT as strong as I thought it was. I made a decision to right myself this time by changing my whole outlook by signing up for the marathon and start training. Now that I am 2 months into training, I am getting a little bored and need to re-focus. I am getting "mentally" torn down. This is it REACH, this is the time that I mess up. I thank GOD every second that passes that I have killed my "sources" or I would have prob already used. Sucks to say that, but its true. I am still here and coming up on 2 months clean tomorrow. Not bad, but not good either.

O
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Old 01-03-2008, 04:51 PM   #5
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Re: "we can't think our way into thinking right...."

Hi guys

CAPT Sweetpea, I was exactly where you were at a point in tapering... starting to see glimmers of clarity in what was happening to me, glimmers that maybe, just maybe, I was, indeed, going to be okay. Desperate hope began to change to a truer, better hope until the time came when I was just full of hope. The hope spurred on that will to act, to endure, to say, "yes, this is worth the price I am paying." I began to roll more with the withdrawals.... no, they did not become easier, just more routine, just a part of making that hope a reality. As the hope grew, it made me more capable of withstanding the anxiety attacks, the physical crud. It will happen for you, too. Not just because it has happened for me, but because it has for thousands before us. This board, as wonderful as it is, is but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to people who have conquered addiction. ( The rest of them just haven't found us! Chuckles).

Bridget Some cuts were easier for me, some harder. I don't have a clue as to why, only the knowledge that that is how it was. When they were easier, I thought I had conquered some magic will.... wrong! A tough one would come next and I would sob and cry and beg Jesus to help me through it. I could not think away the symptoms that tortured me... I had to just endure.... and I could because I was doing what had to be done. I was too wrapped up in the process of withdrawal to really think at times. I had to keep my mantra in my head .. "I am getting stronger and better everyday." ...and often that was as far as any thinking was involved. Do what I had been instructed to do and depend through almost a blind faith at times. It was what got me through the toughest times.

Meddguy The 2-3 month mark has always been your toughest time, hasn't it? Friend, nobody's mind is so strong in the beginning of being clean. We are filled with such determination when we start coming off the drugs, but as you know, it is afterwards that can be so challenging. You can not stop those thoughts, Buddy, but you can refuse to act on them. Your actions earlier on are going to help you greatly now. Like you, I also cut off all my sources at the get-go. For me, it involved calling every doctor who treats me for anything and asking that it be put into my charts that I was withdrawing off all opiates and benzos. Even when I went to the ER in great pain a while back, it was one of the first things I said. The doctor didn't even blink an eye. When it became unbearable, he suggested morphine shots and I took them. And I went home with a small script of Vicoden. I used a couple over the next couple of days and that was it. I swear to you, I had no cravings. I switched over to Motrin and was okay. The thinking honestly, honestly changes into a new attitude about all drugs. I still deal with a lot of pain with the leg, but I don't even take Motrin often anymore. I lay down, elevate, use heat or ice and know that eventually it will calm down to a more bearable point. Of course, I am not working, so this is easier for me to do than many i pain. Give it time, Meddguy. The thoughts will ease up. When they come, practice what works for you to distract yourself, same as you did during your withdrawal. Like the physical symptoms, the mental ones abate, they just take a while longer. You have accomplished a difficult part and now, because you have recognized where your total plan fell short the other times and have revised it, you are going to make it. Yes, you are going to make it. That strong, clear mind of yours will be back to full, good thinking. Right now, the after-effect thoughts are crowding it... they will leave in time and you will be crystal clear again. Promise you that it is all part of the process. The body AND the mind do heal. How wondrous, huh?

Love to each of you
reach

My thinking here has also changed. After many months of agonizing thinking, I am going to apply for disability. It was not in me for a long, long time to accept that work is not a good choice for me anymore. For too long I pushed beyond my limits to work and used drugs to keep me functioning to some level. It backfired on me and sent me over the edge instead. I am not a slackard or a bum... I just do not have the capacity to work anymore. The pain is too frequent, using drugs will never be an option for me again. I have worked hard since I was a kid and this is just where my life is now. It is with clarity now that I see that using drugs to try to maintain some ideal of myself is phony. I am who I am, I am where I am.

 
Old 01-03-2008, 04:54 PM   #6
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Re: "we can't think our way into thinking right...."

Hi guys

CAPT Sweetpea, I was exactly where you were at a point in tapering... starting to see glimmers of clarity in what was happening to me, glimmers that maybe, just maybe, I was, indeed, going to be okay. Desperate hope began to change to a truer, better hope until the time came when I was just full of hope. The hope spurred on that will to act, to endure, to say, "yes, this is worth the price I am paying." I began to roll more with the withdrawals.... no, they did not become easier, just more routine, just a part of making that hope a reality. As the hope grew, it made me more capable of withstanding the anxiety attacks, the physical crud. It will happen for you, too. Not just because it has happened for me, but because it has for thousands before us. This board, as wonderful as it is, is but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to people who have conquered addiction. ( The rest of them just haven't found us! Chuckles).

Bridget Some cuts were easier for me, some harder. I don't have a clue as to why, only the knowledge that that is how it was. When they were easier, I thought I had conquered some magic will.... wrong! A tough one would come next and I would sob and cry and beg Jesus to help me through it. I could not think away the symptoms that tortured me... I had to just endure.... and I could because I was doing what had to be done. I was too wrapped up in the process of withdrawal to really think at times. I had to keep my mantra in my head .. "I am getting stronger and better everyday." ...and often that was as far as any thinking was involved. Do what I had been instructed to do and depend through almost a blind faith at times. It was what got me through the toughest times.

Meddguy The 2-3 month mark has always been your toughest time, hasn't it? Friend, nobody's mind is so strong in the beginning of being clean. We are filled with such determination when we start coming off the drugs, but as you know, it is afterwards that can be so challenging. You can not stop those thoughts, Buddy, but you can refuse to act on them. Your actions earlier on are going to help you greatly now. Like you, I also cut off all my sources at the get-go. For me, it involved calling every doctor who treats me for anything and asking that it be put into my charts that I was withdrawing off all opiates and benzos. Even when I went to the ER in great pain a while back, it was one of the first things I said. The doctor didn't even blink an eye. When it became unbearable, he suggested morphine shots and I took them. And I went home with a small script of Vicoden. I used a couple over the next couple of days and that was it. I swear to you, I had no cravings. I switched over to Motrin and was okay. The thinking honestly, honestly changes into a new attitude about all drugs. I still deal with a lot of pain with the leg, but I don't even take Motrin often anymore. I lay down, elevate, use heat or ice and know that eventually it will calm down to a more bearable point. Of course, I am not working, so this is easier for me to do than many i pain. Give it time, Meddguy. The thoughts will ease up. When they come, practice what works for you to distract yourself, same as you did during your withdrawal. Like the physical symptoms, the mental ones abate, they just take a while longer. You have accomplished a difficult part and now, because you have recognized where your total plan fell short the other times and have revised it, you are going to make it. Yes, you are going to make it. That strong, clear mind of yours will be back to full, good thinking. Right now, the after-effect thoughts are crowding it... they will leave in time and you will be crystal clear again. Promise you that it is all part of the process. The body AND the mind do heal. How wondrous, huh?

Love to each of you
reach

PS. My thinking has also changed concerning something very important to me all my life. Work. After many months of agonizing thinking, I am going to apply for disability. It was not in me for a long, long time to accept that work is not a good choice for me anymore. For too long I pushed beyond my limits to work and used drugs to keep me functioning to some level. It backfired on me and sent me over the edge instead. I am not a slackard or a bum... I just do not have the capacity to work anymore. The pain is too frequent, using drugs will never be an option for me again. I have worked hard since I was a kid and this is just where my life is now. It is with clarity now that I see that using drugs to try to maintain some ideal of myself is phony. I am who I am, I am where I am.

 
Old 01-03-2008, 09:49 PM   #7
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Re: "we can't think our way into thinking right...."

The old timer said that the primary purpose of the group is to carry the message to the addict who still suffers .....sounds like that happened

You rock reach!!!

 
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