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Recovering Marijuana addict, just sharing...
I started smoking Cannabis about 6 years ago. I had two teenage children living at home, which at times was quite stressful. I got some weed from a co-worker and it really seemed to help. I really started noticing benefits from smoking, I was easier going, and much more relaxed.
Initially I was smoking about a bowl of regs, once a day. Over the years this increased , but I am not sure exactly how much, I do know that an oz lasted about a 3-4 weeks. So I guess about a gram a day. I never really had a good source, a few times I ran out, and got a little moody until I got some more, but not really the end of the world. Once in awhile I would get my hands on some really good chronic type stuff, that was always a treat. For the most part, there was no downside to my habit except running out. My work was still was fine. I work in IT, and I really thought I was better at solving problems when I had a little high on, and I still believe I was.
About two weeks ago, a neighbor told me he could get his hands on some crazy krypie stuff from the next state over. I put my order in for a half oz. I got this stuff on a Wednesday, it was nice, I noticed right away that it was pretty strong. I ground it up and mixed it with the last of my regs. I smoked this for 5 days, probably at the same volume that I was smoking the regs.
Now, last Monday, which was 5 days in on the new weed, later in the day, I started not feeling so good, and that night, I couldn't sleep. I probably was taking tokes up until about midnight, but I was awake until 4am. I got up the next morning around 9am, and I really felt bad. I had a Very bad case of nervous stomach, or anxiety, complete loss of appetite, and a really hard time regulating my body temperature. I get chills, then I am sweating, back and forth. But, I LITERALLY have nothing to worry about, my life is fine, my marriage is great, my job is good, and I have no financial worries. But, I was worried sick none the less. It kind of reminded me of that feeling I had when I was a kid, and I was going home with a really bad report card or when I was waiting for my father to get home because I was going to be in big trouble.
I tried to press through, smoked some more of the super weed, took a 15 mile bike ride, basically anything I could do to try to relax. This was Tuesday, and it was the last day I smoked. At this time, the nervous feeling was quite like Hell, although I was not in any physical pain, it was as bad as anything I could ever remember. I had no appetite, my weight was dropping, I lost around 8lbs in those 2 days. I went back to my neighbors and gave him all of it, told him I had a bad reaction and to be careful and toss it if he had any symptoms. I also tossed my pipes, papers, and everything related to smoking pot.
Wednesday morning I called my family doctor, and told him I was having some sort of severe anxiety and needed an emergency appt. He saw me, I told him everything, when I told him about the new pot, he said "Ahhh, now we are getting to the scene of the crime". But none the less, he ordered a blood workup, and prescribed .5mg of Xanax 2X per day to take the edge off. I slept most of the rest of Wednesday because of the Xanax, and I had no trouble sleeping Wed night, although for the first time since I can remember, I started dreaming again, or at least remembering my dreams, I might add though, somewhere around Thursday or so, I had a really bad nightmare that woke me up, but that was a solo occurrence thus far. I also might like to point out, that I have NO interest in smoking again, no cravings at all, probably because I am now so scared.
Today is Tuesday, it has been one week, some days are good, and some are bad. My appetite is slowly coming back, but not anywhere like it used to be. I have skipped a lot of Xanax, only taking them when I get really bad. Yesterday I woke up feeling great, and didn't take a Xanax, I got on my Motorcycle, took a long ride, and felt fantastic. Last night opening the mail with my wife, she got a call back on a Mammogram for another look, that started me into a tail spin, so we went out to eat, but it was cold and rainy, and really depressing last night and things got pretty darn bad, I took a Xanax and it made it bearable, however, I felt like I had a good night's sleep. This morning I woke up feeling like crap, ate another Xanax and that made it bearable. This afternoon I took another long brisk bike ride, and now I feel pretty darn good again.
The Nurse at my Doctors office called today and got my blood work back, everything looks pretty normal, except my cholesterol is a little high, but for the most part, everything was fine. I told her I was scared to death of the Xanax, and afraid of getting hooked on it, asking if they could find something a little less scary to 'take the edge off'. All in all, I have taken 10 .5mg Xanax in the last 6 days. They are looking into an alternative for me. I am thinking if things get bad tonight, I might try to take some Valerian root instead of the Xanax.
I am not sure what kicked this off, but from everything I read, my symptoms sure sound like Cannabis withdrawal. I have to think this is going to get better. I also think by typing all of this out maybe it is some sort of therapy.
UPDATE: Thursday morning.
It's Thursday morning. Yesterday was a very good day, I have been off the Xanax since the beginning of the week. I got up yesterday, went out and got a new tire put on my motorcycle, walked to a diner while waiting and had a nice chat with a gentleman at the counter over breakfast, went out to dinner with some friends, had a couple beers, really felt quite fine.
After I got home, I started to get a little anxious feeling, I took a couple of these herbal capsules I got from the health food store that have valarian and passion and couple other soothing type herbs, then my wife and I took a walk around the block, did a lot of talking and when we got back, I was better for the rest of the night. Sleep, however, was another story, last night I had quite a restless night's sleep. took two more of those capsules sometime in the middle of the night to help me get back to sleep, it worked. In case you are wondering what I am taking it is called natra-sleep from GNC.
Anyhoo, wife woke me up this morning with a special treat (wink wink). I was anxious feeling after so I make a chamomile tea, and took a handful of vitamins, B, C, Lysine, and Omega, but very shortly after I had a sudden nausea fit, one or two fruitless heaves and it was gone, and I am now feeling much better.
I have been riding my bike for about an hour a day, at a pretty hard pace, this has done wonders, really, better than anything else. I used to be quite the cyclist... hehe, before the pot, but I broke the old steed out again, and I am remembering how much I loved it. All in all, it has been around 9 days, and every day seems to be different, and somewhat of a surprise, but really, it is getting better and better. It just gets discouraging when you have the down times.
My wife is reminding me that at the beginning of this, I was bad almost all day, with little bitty spurts of feeling good mixed it, now I am good most of the day, with little bitty spurts of feeling bad. I can't complain, I did this to myself, and I will consider it a lesson learned. Oh, I might add, that now, I am starting to wish I had some week, all week I have been scared to death to smoke some but yesterday, if I had it , I would have tried it. Good thing I got rid of everything.
Thanks for sharing your story. Honestly, you sound like you are really on the right track. Most people relapse within a few days when they first try to quit...I know I did. Coming to this message board has been a huge relief for me and it really does help to get all of your feelings out. Making it through the first week is the hardest part, but the cravings last longer. Getting exersize is the best thing you can do for the cravings. If you need to talk about anything, just send me a private message. I come here pretty much every day and I am willing to listen to anyone who needs to talk. I know I still need to talk too.
Thanks for the kind words Murphy. Little antsy tonight, starting to feel a lot like cigarette withdrawal, which is really a huge improvement. At least I don't feel like I am going to die, just restless and bored. Whatever will I do with all this time?
Kind of a rough day today. Took two benadryl last night and got a full nights sleep. But today I am slightly anxious, quite restless, and very irratable. which sucks, because I was sooooooo easy going when I was smoking pot. I just got back from my bike ride, while it helped, it wasn't as great as it was the last few days. Looks like I have possible moved into a different stage. Oh boy, this is going to be interesting.
I'll keep updating this, just in case anybody is reading it. I hope you can get some hope, or comfort or something out of it. Today is Monday. It was a very good day. Last night I really took some time to look at my fears, the root of my anxiety, and openly talked about them with my wife. Once you get them out, you sort of see that they really aren't that scary. I was spending a lot of the last month, smoking pot, and reading 2012 stuff and conspiracy theory stuff of the web, probably to the point that it made me a bit crazy. Once we started talking about my fears, it helped me see that they really weren't very valid, they kind of lost their power. I had a really good night, felt pretty close to normal. I woke up this morning feeling a little anxious, but had a herbal tea (I have found Celestial Seasons Tension Tamer quite helpful). Carried my butt down to my second NA meeting. I was feeling great all day, around 1:30 I got pretty hungry so I ate 3 Hotdogs! I couldn't believe I ate that much, it did leave my stomach a bit upset, but it was good to see my appetite again.
Later in the day around 3:30PM, I started to feel a little restless and bored, and ever so slightly anxious, so I did my bike ride.
I think for the rest of the afternoon I was pretty bored and restless, make no doubt that I think a joint would have fixed it right up, but I am not going to go there. I am really starting to wonder what I did with all my time, I guess when you are high, the hours can just pass by without you noticing.
My wife got home from her job (I work from home, lucky me!) and I was a little anxious, but not too bad, we went out to dinner and talked more, I found that catching bits of the US defecit problem, and our civil rights issues stressed me out, we talked out it, and it helped again. I am feeling pretty much normal again now. I am sitting down with a cup of tea, and typing this up, and them maybe I will play a video game or something.
I guess what I am trying to say, is I have found it VERY helpful to talk about the root fears of my anxiety, I have decided that complete and total honesty works well for me, and I feel better because of it. Also, going to NA is a big help. I think it might be a little overkill for me, especially seeing the rough times of some others. I really believe that maybe this is my calling. Perhaps I have been lead down this path to bring me to NA, maybe notso much for myself but to help others. Either way, isn't helping others helping yourself? Love others as you would love yourself?
I think the world needs a lot more Love, NA is helping me to tear down the walls that divide us, there is no difference between me, and somebody who is struggling with Heroin and homeless, We all just need to know that we are loved, no matter what, and that ultimatly everything is going to be OK.
I go back to my family DR tomorrow for my 2 week follow up, I don't even feel like the same person I was 2 weeks ago. Honestly, that feels like a whole lifetime ago. Isn't life weird like that sometimes? One of the things I picked up from my 2 days in NA is "This too shall pass", but not in the way you think, sure it is comforting to say that when things look desperate and bleak, but I found it is helpful to say it when you feel like you are on top of the world too... "This too shall pass", kinda takes the disapointment out of the next downer doesn't it? It seems to take some pressure off knowing that, sure, things aren't always going to be this rosy, but still, it's ok.
Another thing I have learned, is to just observe yourself, from your soul, step back and take a look at yourself. Don't judge yourself so harshly, as a matter of fact, don't judge yourself at all, none of this is 'good' or 'bad', it just is. Just make an observation, "Today I am anxious." "Today I feel good", just observe it, and accept it. Relax and get on with life.
Oh and don't forget to love yourself while you are at it.
Looks like it is officially 2 weeks for me. I certainly still have my ups and downs. But fortunatly, the downs aren't completely debilitating. I woke up this morning with pretty severe anxiety. I took a couple Valerian capsules and dranke some chamomile tea, it only provided minimal relief. I ride a motorcycle full time and it was raining a bit this morning, so against my anxiety I forced myself up and drove my wife in her car to her office so I could have the car today. And since I had the car, I decided to get some errands done, I pushed through until lunch time and got a good bit done. It didn't make me feel any better though. I picked my wife up for lunch, and we went downtown and ate, afterward, I went in to the music store nextdoor to where we ate and bought a second hand guitar, I got pretty testy with the sales lady, and felt god awful about it. Later I called her back to apologize and then had a good cry after I hung up, I felt a good bit better after that, I think crying helps a lot. The rest of the afternoon was pretty good. but tonight I have a very slight nervous stomach, I am about to make another cup of tea and try to settle down and watch some TV. I hope tomorrow is better.
I do have to keep reminding myself how much worse it could be, and I try to be grateful for the little joys I still have, even though some times they feel VERY little.
This evening I went to a local Buddhist fellowship group for some guided meditation, it was nice, I was VERY relaxed afterward, but it didn't take long at all for the anxiety to creep back in. I think maybe I just shouldn't be out on cloudy nights, it just feels so darn depressing.
These days I am finding that I can no longer identify a specific source of my anxiety, I have talked most of my fears away, which seemed to exasperate it, and now it is just anxiety for the sake of anxiety. My appetite is getting much better, the first week I was having pretty vivid dreams, but now, I am mostly not really remembering them. For the most part, the only symptoms are anxiety, and very mild depression. I keep telling myself it is completely normal, not to over analyze it, because it is just the withdrawal, not really me.
Day 16. Even though I don't feel completely normal, I will go ahead and call today a good day. It seems the more I get done, the better I feel. Even if I am anxious or depressed, if I push though, I feel good about my accomplishments. I woke up feeling so-so, not horrible, not great. Made a tea, and since I don't have much appetite in the mornings, I drank an ensure. I was fully prepared to make a relax day of today, stay in my underwear, watch some funny movies, sip tea, read some 4chan, just make it a pretty mellow day. Around 9AM, when the whole office is getting in to work, one of the girls in the accounting department put in an IT support form. Those pop into my email. She said her computer is completely dead. F'ing Great! so I put on my boots and jeans, and jacket, jump on my bike and haul ass to the office. Despite how I felt, when I stepped into her office, she was working on her co-workers computer, I guess her co-worker was on vacation or something. But she greeted me with a big smile, and joked about her computer up and dying, then made a comment about not having a up to date backup on our backup server....I laughed, inside I was crying, but she seemed to be taking it well, so I figued I would do the same. It took me about 20 seconds to figure out the power supply was dead. I wen't upstairs to where we keep old computers and parts, and grabbed a second hand power supply on the shelf, brought it down and swapped it out, Voila! she was back in business. And I felt good about being able to drag my ass out of the house and get something important done. I then went to the health food store, and told em what I was going through. I bought a bunch of stuff to take, really nice fish oil, some kave to give a try (I like to switch it up some, I don't want to get completely used to the valerian), and some 5-htp. After that, I went down to the bank and made a motorcycle payment. Talked with the girl at the bank for a bit, and asked her if she knew a good Masseuse, she recommended somebody, so I went there.
I got there around lunch time, and they told me she was at lunch, so I made an appt. for when she got back. I went next door to an 'nicer' Chinese Restaraunt, and sat alone, and ate a nice lunch. On my way out, when paying my bill, the lady had another bill in her hand. I said 'let me get that one too", they didn't quite know what to do about that, but I picked up another party's check too, don't know who it was, but it felt good, and I hope I could have spread some cheer.
Went back to the masseuse, and got a massage. Second one in my life. Got a full hour, almost fell asleep a couple times, it was very, very, very, relaxing. I also told the Masseuse about my addiction and withdrawal, and she said that this would release a lot of the toxins from my tissues, and to make sure I drink a lot of water afterward. I am not so sure about that, but it was quite nice none the less.
On my way home, knowing I would not want to cook, I stopped and got some Sushi to go for my Wife and I to have for dinner tonight. Still waiting on her to get home. I still have a little anxiety, but I managed to get out, and feel like a normal person today. So I will go ahead and put the Good Day stamp of approval on this day.
Great to hear your doing well, keep up the good work....
The one thing I take from being anxious and restless (not the irritable) it is motivation knocking on your door. When we smoke (easy going) is another words (burnt).... Your doing great, your one of the first blogs I read 5 days ago
Man, I am going to type this for the second time, I hit the reply button above the post after I typed it all out and it cleared it out.
Anyway... Day 18. Yesterday I was feeling good all day long, there is some very mild anxiety throughout the day but it was very manageable. Today I woke up feeling pretty good, my wife and I even went out to breakfast and I ate it all! Sometime yesterday I read an article on cat purring and they are finding that it might have healing benefitis. So my wife and I decided to go to the local humane society and look at the cats.
When we got there, it was pretty crowded, with lots of kids and families running around, I started getting a little nervous and anxious. But pushed through. They have 4 nice community cat rooms, the first one we went in, we were greeted at the door by a very friendly little fella, his name was Buddha, we thought that had to be some sort of a sign, I sat on the floor petting Buddha and that pretty much cleared my anxiety right up. We spend a good hour in the cat rooms, petting and holding pretty much every cat they had, but in the end, we came back to Buddha... whom we took home
We went back out to dinner, I had a couple glasses of unsweet tea with my meal, but was feeling good, then we decided to stop by the pet store and load up on cat stuff, and then go to the grocery store, get some more herbal tea and seltzer water. After leaving the store, it was starting to get dark, and I was getting a little nervous feeling. I am home now, and it feels like it is just starting to subside, no thanks to Buddha who seems to be spending the night hiding under the furniture, poor little guy...
Anyway, I am excited to have a new friend in the house to spend the days with, and even though there were a few fleeting moments of nervous stomach, I am going to put the "Good Day Stamp of Approval" on both today and yesterday.
I hope everybody else it doing well, much Love and happy thoughts to you all!
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