Recovery

Staying the Course

March 27, 2011

Hello world, it’s me again. Before starting in about staying the course in recovery I want to thank Screedler for breathing life into TDA during my hiatus. It’s been a great comfort knowing the blog continues in my absence. When my wife started chemotherapy I made a promise to run the 26.2 Race to End […]

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What’chu Talkin’ ’bout Willis? Straight Up Talk From Todd Bridges

December 29, 2010

Willis Jackson from Diff’rent Strokes fame, aka Todd Bridges could be considered a last man standing of sorts of the late 70’s teen actors.  He certainly is the only survivor of his teen castmates from the show.  The series that made stars out of child actors included Gary Coleman, Dana Plato, and himself.  The show was groundbreaking in it’s casting, and treatment of serious issues such as […]

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George Bush and Alcohol

November 7, 2010

George Bush’s memoirs are coming out next week.  The book Decision Points,  details his presidency and crucial moments in his life .  One of those life points is/was his relationship with alcohol.  Apparently, he really opens up about the subject in a forthcoming interview he gave NBC’s Matt Lauer.  In the interview, Bush describes years of heavy drinking that caused […]

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Prop 19 Fails – Californian Tokers Could Care Less

November 4, 2010

The vote on California’s measure to make the recreational use of marijuana legal did not pass.  It seems the reasons for them (pot smokers of California) to vote for it or vote at all, were not persuasive enough.  Without a doubt, if every pot smoker in their state had gone out and voted the measure would have been […]

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Medical Marijuana: The Brick and Mortar Gateway Drug

October 11, 2010

With the push for the legalization of marijuana and such legislation as California’s Prop 19 moving past the mostly accepted wink-wink-nudge-nudge-medical-use to the presently debated tax-and-regulate argument, the past success of pot proponents may actually become the biggest hurdle to further approval. In the past, advocates have claimed the opposition’s position on marijuana as a […]

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Update: The Prometa Plunge Nears Rock Bottom

September 30, 2010

During the same week that MSNBC reports setbacks plaguing drug addiction remedy Prometa, The News Tribune in Seattle details relates the trouble with Washington Rep. Dennis Flannigan possibly being sanctioned because of his stock ownership in Hythiam, the company that licenses the alleged cure for addiction.

Prometa is apparently not only a factor in bringing down politicians, it seems to have done quite a trick on Hythiam’s stock price that has plunged precipitously over the last three months.

A trial of a controversial drug cocktail designed to treat meth and cocaine addiction has been halted after an audit found that the treatment’s success rate had been “greatly exaggerated.” The action was a major blow to Hythiam Inc., which licenses the “Prometa protocol” to private doctors and stands to benefit financially if it can gain access to public funding of drug treatment across the country. Coupled with subsequent media reports that public officials who championed the pilot program owned stock in Hythiam, the news sent the company’s shares plummeting from more than $8 a share in October to about $2.75 this week.~ MSNBC.com

An alcoholic often has to hit rock bottom before facing the lies and consequences of an unmanageable life, I wonder if Hythiam is facing the same kind of decision with it’s Prometa Protocol that may end up being more successful as a marketing campaign than a cure for addiction?

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The Health Consequences of Secondhand Drinking/Drugging (SHDD)

September 25, 2010

Thank you author and speaker Lisa Frederiksen of Breaking the Cycles for this regular series sharing her decades long experience of dealing with family alcoholism and alcohol abuse. Click here to see the rest of the series. Something most of us do not fully understand is the physical consequences to the health of a family […]

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Alcoholism: Drinking Alone is not a Sure Sign

September 23, 2010

They say one of the surest signs of alcoholism is drinking alone. Doubtless this is a sign of problem drinking, yet you have many people that do most of their drinking alone but are considered safe, “normal” drinkers.

So what’s the difference?

Well it’s not so much the drinking alone that’s the real problem here; it’s why the alcoholic will drink alone. Shame, embarrassment, and secrecy are all contributing factors but the overwhelming reason an alcoholic will isolate their self from others is their inability to face reality. Total dependence upon alcohol means that all things in life are now derived from drinking. Joy, sadness, courage… everything comes from the bottle until the very substance that provides life takes away the ability to live it.

At least for me, the facade of normalcy was no longer possible when the bartender asked if I needed help or when a convenience store clerk commented on the way my hand shook or how it was awful early for a beer. Even associating with other drunks, those considerate of our common plight became too painful a reminder of my sad state. Any contact with the real world made me painfully aware that I was no longer the master of my own destiny, and the very substance that gave me the strength to face the day also insured I would too debilitated to follow through.

It wasn’t the drinking alone that was the problem, it was why I was drinking alone.

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Yes, Mommie Dearest

September 21, 2010

Yeah right. They say confession is good for the soul and certainly there is a feeling of liberation when we unburden ourselves to our peers. I think I’ve heard it all from “I have been a terrible friend” to “I should have been sentenced to life”, but it is extremely rare to hear anyone speak of how of bad a parent they are. Sure, we’ve probably all heard the regrets of the parents with older estranged kids or those lamenting the fact their children have been taken away. It is my experience however, that those still using or drinking are much more likely to say, “But, I’ve been a good parent.”

Click “Read More” to continue reading…

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A Practical Guide for Families Dealing with Addiction

September 19, 2010

I plan to post a Q&A with my friend and talented author Lisa Frederiksen on her new book very soon, but until then here is a quick summary of Loved One in Treatment? Now What? It’s been my experience that books written on the topic of addiction and recovery fall into three general categories: 1) […]

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Medical Marijuana Jumps the Shark

September 17, 2010

Even with the wink-wink-nod-nod acceptance that the majority of “patients” prescribed medical marijuana are looking for a buzz instead of a cure, the cannabis dispensaries in the six states that allow this sort of distribution have maintained an air of legitimacy.  Big money advocacy and loyal stoners of the marijuana lobby have supported this medical […]

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I Demand Euphoria!

September 14, 2010

Bill Watterson’s modern classic comic about a boy and his tiger, Calvin and Hobbes, has been a favorite of mine since the early days of my sobriety. I discovered Calvin when I still felt unsettled and self conscious about my plight as an alcoholic. The bookstore coffee shop was a safe refuge where I could get out of the house without getting into temptation and burn the dangerous, free time away.

I’ll bet I read every Calvin book they had on the shelf at least three times, I liked them all. From Scientific Progress Goes “Boink” to Homicidal Psycho Jungle Cat; I believe it was here that I learned to laugh again. Not a forced or polite titter, but the soul healing irrepressible laughter that makes you look around to make sure nobody is sizing you up for a straight jacket. However it wasn’t until much later in my recovery that I learned another valuable life-lesson even though it was drawn out for me in those very pages.

“That’s the difference between me and the rest of the world! Happiness isn’t good enough for me! I demand euphoria!” ~Calvin

Now I am sure it is perfectly healthy for a five-year old with a talented stuffed tiger to expect this out of life, but for an addict or an alcoholic it’s just plain dangerous. Why? Well because Calvin would go out and build a transmogrifier and push the limits of his imagination to attain his goals while an addict will instead seek a magic pill and withdraw into his own little fantasy world. I began thinking about this phrase since I read Erin’s post on relapse in which she didn’t so much fall off the wagon as she allowed her thought pattern to slip back into their old routines. I know the feeling, you heard me say it before, it’s thinking like an alcoholic. It’s taking the benadryl because I deserve a “deeper” sleep or leaving a perfectly good job because I am “worth more” even though it means unemployment. Calvin may have been a day dreamer, but just as soon as he could imagine a scenario he would be out in the front yard building it out of snow, getting out the shovel and digging it up, or making it out cardboard boxes.

It’s alright to demand wonderful things from life, but in a healthy recovery you have to be prepared to go out there and make it happen.

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2010 National Alcohol & Drug Addiction Recovery Month

September 12, 2010

Every month at TDA is all-about-recovery and I usually try to do something extra special in September for the annual National Alcohol & Drug Addiction Recovery Month. This September though my wife’s chemotherapy is taking priority, but before the chance slips away I would still like to direct you toward this excellent website chock full […]

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The National Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer: Of Great Spirit and Weak Knees

September 10, 2010

I am officially three weeks into training for the National Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer and my progress has been both gratifying and unfortunately, very painful. I have made great strides at increasing my distance and pace, yet I must admit that it was not that hard to show a vast improvement considering the truly […]

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Why Do Heavy Drinkers Outlive Nondrinkers? I Have a Better Question.

September 8, 2010

A hat tip to Healing Imperfectly for bringing to my attention the recent Time Magazine article that asks Why Do Heavy Drinkers Outlive Nondrinkers? The study that suggests that heavy drinkers outlive abstainers has been widely promoted on the net as proof that drinking is “good” for you. Not to rain on the parade of […]

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