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  • Monday Meetup

    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Monday Meetup

    Mon Feb 07, 2022 8:11 pm

    Monday Meetup is here…….if there’s anyone out there who wants to talk about their weekend or anything else addiction or recovery related it’s be great to hear from you. I'm on here every Monday and Thursday between 8pm - 10pm and will reply when I can.

    Breaking the old patterns can be bloody hard but the end result is well and truly worth it. Taking it step by step a day at a time it is possible. I'd almost given up hope of being able to maintain any period of abstinence but it is possible.

    Anyhoo...........what's on your mind?
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Feb 07, 2022 8:36 pm

    I've been working on my work/life balance and spent trying to find new interests, connect with old ones and do things that give a sense of satisfaction from life. I'm also dog sitting a friend's dog for a couple of weeks so my usual routine has been put way out of balance. Sunday was a really full day and I walked away feeling pretty great at the end of it. Getting up early to walk the dog just got the day started and stopped me wasting the morning in bed. I had my daughter so from there we went for a kayak at the beach which is a new thing for both of us and was awesome to get some fresh air and get my body moving. We met friends at the inflatable water park and then hit the pool for a while after that. By the time we got home to take the dog for his evening walk it and grabbed a pizza for dinner it was almost 8pm.

    The great thing was that because I was straight, I remember it all and enjoyed it all. I used to struggle to do anything when I was drinking and using..............I'd have all the plans but none of the action or follow through.

    How was your weekend????
    1 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Feb 14, 2022 8:35 pm

    Hi All..............I hope your weekend was safe and I hope you're feeling orright.

    Mine was pretty good and involved walking the other way at times. On Sunday I caught up with friends in the city for lunch and while I was comfortable with them drinking I was still uneasy. I'd been a bit uneasy all weekend and gambling was rearing it's head trying to push me to the casino. Thankfully when we left one of my friends was going to the same train station and instead of making an excuse to walk the other way to the casino I just walked to the station with her instead................and felt soooo much better for it.

    I'm at a funny stage in my life now where I may be almost too comfortable with not drinking. There's no pressure to drink with this crew, they've been with me since the 4 month mark of my sobriety and are well aware of my focus. They support me and I couldn't have wished for a better bunch to work with for two years...........and remain friends with years later. I've just been unsettled and in part that's because I'm in a change process which I've shared a bit about recently. Part of that change process is to get back to seeing friends again. I mean Covid put a stop to that for a while and I also created a protective barrier for a few years.

    Last night one of my mates got in contact and wants to catch up. There's an angle I hadn't considered and it seems so obvious now............he misses me. For so long I've only being thinking from my perspective where I've had to keep some friends at arm's length and what I'm missing out on. To hear him say that he misses me was a real eye opener. We've caught up a few times over the years but this was someone who saved my arse on more than one occasion and even gave me somewhere to live.

    Recovery isn't easy to maintain and it comes with sacrifice..........I'm going to spend some time working out who I can let back in and who I need to keep on the outer. I've already told one guy he can't be part of my life until he stops using completely and I was best man at his wedding. That's the sort of decision I must make to protect my recovery. My decision to get back in contact with some mates has to be carefully measured and done with care. It has do be done safely. Daytime catch ups at first with some strong conversations about what I need from them. Although I'm looking at expanding my circle again I need that circle to protect me and everything I've spent so long rebuilding.

    This will be a slow process but I'm hopeful it's a rewarding one............I need to be prepared for the hurt if things don't work out too but I feel like I'm strong enough at the moment to work through that. Timing is a big factor with decisions like this.

    Are there any decisions you've been wrestling with?

    What's on your mind?
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:24 pm

    Monday Meetup...........is there anything you want to talk about??? What's on your mind??? How did your weekend go???

    Planning has been a bit of a focus for me of late because it went missing for a while there. I think it was one of the casualties of Covid and lockdowns because here in Melbourne...........well..........we were always in lockdown and there wasn't much planning to do. I feel a bit like I'm emerging from a cocoon and life is beginning to happen again. Beginning to take shape. My recovery relies on that. If I leave too much idle time I can get a feeling of being a bit overwhelmed by it and I go into a kind of shut down.........it's a defense mechanism I spose.

    I planned activities on the weekend but I didn't go over the top. It was a mix of nature, exercise, fun, chill and most importantly..............all of it was quality time with my daughter. I managed to switch off my head and just enjoy the activities. That was most evident when kayaking at the beach and just feeling the stillness and sunshine. It really is the simple things at times.

    Thoughts of giving in to my gambling addiction have been strong of late but I know that keeping busy with things that give me purpose and make me feel good are most important. Saturday morning I was fighting the urge...........by Saturday afternoon I was too busy enjoying myself to think about it. Just more proof that cravings and urges do ease over time. Sometimes it's a minute at a time. Sometimes it's an hour at a time. It's always a day at a time though.

    How was your weekend?
    0 x
    MoodyM00
    Junior Member
    Posts: 24
    Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2022 4:56 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Fri Mar 04, 2022 9:31 pm

    I know today is Friday and not Monday but better late then never i guess.

    I have been having a challenging time at work and have been having intense urges to use and get ice. However lucky for me i guess is the dealers had none and when they did have supply i had no money. Between client's having extreme behaviours (i work in supported living with intellectual disabled and complex mental health adults) and training new workers and pressures from senior manager. I wanted to throw my job in cause its too much stress and pressure and i was so close to loosing my shit at work (i have autism). A co-worker said go out for a ciggie cause ur about to loose your shit and we dont need you to loose it infront of senior manager.
    I can handle a fair bit of stress and pressure but last week it was just too much. I asked a co-worker if she could even get some drugs for me, cause i need to settle and get back to calm and focused. However her connections were for other drugs and not what i use. I ended up having a sick day the next day as i was so exhausted from sensory overload (me loosing my shit, as i call it).
    So this week been looking for ways and strategies i can do to reduce my sensors and emotions when in a highly stressed situation thats appropriate for the workplace as well. Havent found much so far. My psychologist is aware of this happening and helping me too..

    My son is suicidal and i worry about him so much. He doesnt live with me currently. So hard to support him on the phone and in a way that a young teenager with low iq will understand, be easier if i was allowed to be there with him. I was training in suicide prevention and attempted suicide recovery. Which is why my son knows to call me when he wants to end his life. Been twice this week.

    Im beginning to see how i use to just resort to my drug use and how frequently i did it when i am dealing with super stressful weeks. Im seeing where i need support and learn new ways to manage things without resorting to drug use. Tough journey but one i must take and learn as i go along the path to recovery and sober living.
    ONE MOMENT AT A TIME, KEEP TRYING YOUR BEST EVERYONE. WE CAN ALL GET THROUGH THIS JOURNEY OF OURSE. LOVE, PEACE, STRENGTH, HOPE AND SUPPORT TO YOU ALL. Xx
    3 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Mar 07, 2022 8:06 pm

    Monday Meetup is here again………..if anyone s up for a chat be sure to tag me so I get a notification while I’m surfing the forums.

    What’s on your mind???

    I know for me there’s been a lot of settling lately and that in itself is a little unsettling……….weird huh? It’s like I thrive in the chaos and I get comfortable there so when things settle I don’t know what to do with myself. That’s why I try to set new challenges, aim for new goals, find a new interest or immerse myself back into the things that give me comfort.

    On the weekend I was back at karate for the first time in 12 months and it felt great. It was not only good for mind, body and soul but it’s given me a new challenge to try and get my next belt.

    What can you get back to that’s been missing?
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Mar 07, 2022 9:44 pm

    @MoodyM00 this is few replies now, good stuff!

    It sounds like through some really challenging times some things have fallen your way and even when you’ve been actively seeking drugs there have been roadblocks in place………..that’s really lucky in a strange way. The circumstances around you seeking the drugs suck and I hope there’s been some improvement there for you.

    Working in the sector of helping others can be draining and self care is paramount. I know I’ve gone through times of compassion fatigue and have had to take time off work to replenish. When dealing with my own personal issues on top of that it’s been bloody hard. Supporting your son through the suicidal thoughts is a massive extra pressure. I’m glad you’re reaching out to your support network and encourage you to keep doing so.

    Once again that self awareness of yours is shining through and you’re starting to understand your triggers and taking appropriate action. Your attitude remains amazing too as you continue to focus on learning how to live the sober path. Life isn’t easy and throws up challenges all the time………..how we respond to those challenges is what’s important. I remember one job I had when I was going through some pretty dark times and my thoughts were getting stuck in loops that got stronger and more negative as time went on. I found a storeroom that was never really accessed by others and would go in there and sit in the dark listening to some meditations or body scans. It’s amazing how that shutdown could reset me in as little as five or ten minutes so no one really missed me for such a short space of time.

    Nothing is worth picking up again.
    1 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Mar 14, 2022 9:33 pm

    Weekends are hard enough but there’s always a bit of extra pressure on a long weekend. More time to fill………..and it seems like everywhere you go and everything you do there’s alcohol being advertised or suggested. A friend of mine is trying to make change and came out of rehab a couple of weeks ago. She was at an activity centre today with her kids, one of the indoor trampoline and entertainment centres and there were signs around everywhere advertising that you could get alcohol at the café. It raises a few issues for me.

    I’ll preface what’s to follow with the fact that I used to look at things very differently when I was in active addiction. Now I’m in recovery though I’ve started seeing things from all new angles and just how hard it can be sometimes when you’re trying to make positive change in your life.

    I understand that I’m an alcoholic. That I can’t have just one drink and that the safest option for me is to not drink at all. I get that there are venues and options available for people to drink. But do we really need to be promoting it at indoor entertainment centres that essentially cater for kids? Can we not be setting the example that an adult can sit in a café in such a venue without the need to drink?? The same adults that are then going to be driving these kids home!!! Sure they may be under 0.05 if they’ve had one drink but two drinks in that hour is pushing it and a lot of people are largely unaware that they’re over the limit due to the variables that can affect it.

    It’s hard to find respite from the advertising these days. It seems every corner has a bottleshop or a pub. The supermarket has a bottleshop at the front door. Facebook, Insta and the socials target advertising because of old search histories so you get have it in your face at any unexpected moment……..hopefully not a vulnerable moment. You get prompted to add alcohol to your order when getting Uber Eats, Deliveroo or any of the others. You don’t even have to order food now………you can just get alcohol delivered. Someone else I know has fallen victim to this in the last couple of weeks. Left rehab three weeks ago and has spent the last two weeks getting alcohol delivered getting worse and worse. Doesn’t even have to go any further than the front door for booze. IT JUST FEELS LIKE IT’S EVERYWHERE!!!

    Sure we can make better decisions. I choose not to go to pubs and nightclubs anymore………it’s rare that I’ll be there and if I am I make sure I’m in safe and trusted company who won’t try to force anything on me. I was at a restaurant/bar on Saturday night but that was dinner before a show and I got my friend to go to the bar to get my mineral waters for me. I chose not to catch up with some long term mates on Sunday night who were at a beach house about 20 minutes away. I haven’t seen them in over 6 months but the decision not to go was based on my sobriety. I knew they’d be playing up with more than just booze and didn’t want to put myself in that position of feeling uncomfortable. I’ve felt a bit vulnerable lately and thoughts of using have been running through my head. Of just having a blowout and letting loose for a weekend. I didn’t want to take the risk that I wouldn’t be strong enough………..and let’s face it………being around people who are substance affected when you’re not isn’t an easy space to hold for a range of reasons. But I get frustrated when I’m somewhere I feel should be a safe space and I’m getting booze advertising forced upon me………such as kids activity centres, school afternoon teas, etc.

    That’s why these days I try to find activities that involve nature and the outdoors like bushwalking or beach walking. I bought a kayak recently, getting into the garden to avoid T.V. advertising is good. Golf is a great break, going to the park and shooting some hoops for a while, hitting the tennis ball against the wall. I really want to start doing some camping soon. Movies and Netflix can work because there’s no ad breaks to worry about. Hobbies are good, mindfulness activities……..I’ve started karate as a combination of both. Joining a club or meetup group through local advertising can be great so you meet people interested in the same things, expand your social circle and don’t always have to do things alone can be really beneficial. Recovery can feel isolating when you have to shed your social circles so it’s important to find new connections.

    This is where AA, NA and SMART Recovery can come in handy too. It’s not just about the meetings, it’s about creating a recovery network, supports you can call on outside of the meetings, people to meet for coffee or dinner before or after meetings…………establishing and maintaining new connections.

    This has turned into quite the spill. Sometimes I get like this………..start on one topic and end up digressing my way through a story. Recovery isn’t always easy and comes with the requirement to make healthy choices every day but sometimes it’s made harder than it needs to be through no fault of our own. It’s why having a network is important. People you can call when things get tough. Like today when my friend messaged me as she was doing it tough sitting in the café waiting for her kids. We all need help at times………..I’ll finish with some questions for you………

    What does your support network look like?

    Who is in your support network?

    Do you have a support network?

    How can you add to your support network?

    Who can you add to your support network?


    If any of this has resonated with you or you have any questions, observations or opinions on what I’ve written about I’d love to hear form you. Just tag me in your response so I get a notification and don’t miss it. I hope this has helped in some way.
    1 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Mar 21, 2022 9:05 pm

    Change isn’t always easy, especially when you’re stuck in active addiction. I remember saying things like “Tomorrow will be different”, “Next week I’m stopping”, “It’ll be different this time”, “If I could just change……..insert a, b, c, d, e………..things will be different”, “I need to change everything, I don’t even know where to start”. Change can feel overwhelming. Out of reach. Impossible to achieve. But change is possible.

    Change is possible though. Bit by bit. Step by step. I’m reminded of one of my favourite sayings………I failed my way to success. Change takes mistakes. Getting things right and getting other things very wrong. You have to be willing to make mistakes. It’s my mistakes that taught me the biggest lessons………..they taught me what doesn’t work. Taught me what not to do. In active addiction I thought I knew what I needed, thought I knew myself and what was best for me. It turned out that I didn’t know much about what I needed at all.

    I knew what I wanted…………I desperately wanted to feel better about myself. I wanted to stop using substances……..stop gambling………stop treating other people like crap……..stop treating myself like crap. Nothing I tried had worked. Not long term anyway. I just couldn’t maintain long term change and that was mostly down to the fact that I was trying to do things my way.

    The biggest thing I changed was my mindset. I started to listen. Really listen. I shut my mouth and did what other people recommended. I did what had worked for them. Bit by bit, step by step my life got better. It didn’t happen overnight but it happened. The hopelessness slowly disappeared and for the first time in my life I felt true hope. I felt that I might actually be able to maintain change. People I’ve met along the way who’ve made long term change have done a similar thing. Why did I think I was such an expert on myself and what I needed? All my best decisions had taken me down a rabbit hole of addiction and my life had become progressively worse until I ended up broke, broken and alone. Fearing that change would never be possible I almost ended it all.

    Change was possible though. It took the decision to go to rehab where I was lucky enough to meet people who had made the changes I wanted to make. From there I started to make decisions that would protect my recovery and they weren’t always easy decisions. They still aren’t. I have to continue to make those decisions. My life is better because I continue to make those decisions. I don’t always make them though and they are the mistakes that teach me lessons.

    I used to blame everyone else for where I ended up. Blame my circumstances. My parents for decisions they made when I was a kid. I always looked for a justification for my behaviour. It was easier that way. These days I look at my circumstances and think about what I can change to make it better. What I can do differently. Sometimes it’s changing my perspective. Sometimes it’s accepting that I can’t change anything………….and I have to keep moving along as best I can with the circumstances I have. If something goes wrong I look at what part I played and what I can do differently next time. Do I need to apologise? Do I need to fix something? Do I need to put in a boundary and remove a person, place or thing from my life? What can I learn from what’s happened?

    Changing my thinking has been the biggest change I’ve had to make. By changing my thinking I’ve been able to change my behaviours. Bit by bit. Mistake by mistake. I’ve learned to forgive myself for making mistakes which was a hard thing to do for a perfectionist. I forgive others easily……….why did I always find it so hard to forgive myself and give myself a break? I understand myself better these days………….I’ve changed.

    I still make mistakes and I will for the rest of my life………….and that’s okay.

    I hope this has helped in some way………..I’d love to hear your thoughts or opinions and if you have any questions please throw the at me.
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Mar 28, 2022 8:08 pm

    Howdy……….anyone out there tonight feel like a chat???

    What’s on your mind??

    How was your weekend??
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Apr 04, 2022 8:33 pm

    Hi All……..I hope you had a safe weekend.

    Today I made a choice to try and simplify life a bit. I interviewed for a new job last week but I’d been sitting in a space of uncertainty for a couple of weeks about it. I loved the sound of the role but was unsure about the travel and whether it was the right fit for me. Something hadn’t been sitting right with me since applying but I was determined to go through the process and see how it all worked out. I was finding I was thinking about it a lot though.

    With the family issues I went through last week I started to question whether the timing was right. There were other questions running through my head too and fears about starting again and whether I’d be able to do the role. All the usual fears that can have the ability to paralyse me at times……….unfortunately.

    Today I decided to trust my gut and settle my head by withdrawing my application. I felt instant relief but am still unsure if I made the right decision. The thing is that in cases like this there is no right or wrong decision……….there is only the decision I made. I’ll never get the opportunity to see how things would have played out if I’d stayed in the running.

    Life is full of decisions like this and I’m glad I’m in recovery now. What I’ve learnt in recovery is to sit in the uncomfortability and trust my gut. It’s not always easy and there’s going to be plenty more of these decisions in the future. Once upon a time I would have just used and tried to block out the uncertainty. I would not have listened to my body………….I hadn’t learnt how to yet. Someone once told me that emotions are your body’s way of communicating with you. Of telling you that something isn’t right………or that it is. When I was using I never felt my emotions because they were always numbed or blocked out all together.

    I hope if you’re facing a difficult decision you can trust what your body is trying to tell you because your body is usually right. If your head, heart and gut are in alignment it will feel like the right decision. That’s kinda why when you’re going through those yes/no/yes/no/yes/no thoughts about whether or not to use your body feels like it’s all over the place. And that’s why when you do give in and use you feel like crap afterwards………..because it wasn’t the decision you actually wanted to make. Head, heart, gut weren’t in alignment.

    How was your weekend?? Any difficult decisions to be made??
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Apr 11, 2022 8:18 pm

    What is it about Mondays? Why does it feel so hard to get started? Did anything happen on the weekend?
    I saw this quote today, “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there”.

    Does life feel like you’ve been getting nowhere?

    Have you been thinking about changing your substance use for a while?

    What is it that’s stopping you?

    Are you actually on the right track?


    It would be great to start some conversation about this. There’s a lot of people that get on here to see if what they’re feeling is normal or if anyone else feels the same. The more people that share on here, the more other people are helped.

    Be brave, share some of your thoughts.
    2 x
    Kiz11
    Junior Member
    Posts: 1
    Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2022 8:48 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Apr 11, 2022 8:31 pm

    Hey everyone, I don’t really know what to say but I’m 2 weeks clean after 5 years of using ice heavily. All up battling a 9 year addiction but the last 5 years have been pretty full on.

    So 2 weeks clean 🙌 I have a few questions that I would love any advice or ideas on.

    1. I’m struggling massively with boredom throughout the days.. I have notice I seen to be wanting to have a drink when this happens whether it be 8:00am or 4:00pm. The last thing I want to do is trade one addiction for another so my question is what are some strategies you have used to get past the boredom?

    2. My second struggle is sleeping.. I have no problem falling asleep but staying asleep is driving me crazy! I wake up every 2 hours and at about 2:30am I struggle to fall back asleep. I eventually do fall asleep and then I’ll wake one more time before needing to be up for the day but my morning alarm goes off and I struggle to get out of bed! I can’t win, I’m either tired when I need to be awake or awake when I need to be tired 🙄 does anyone have any ideas on how I can stay asleep instead of waking up so many times through the night?

    Thank you in advance and I hope everyone has a lovely week
    1 x
    bh16
    Junior Member
    Posts: 2
    Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2022 2:07 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Apr 11, 2022 9:00 pm

    Hi and thank you for both sharing.

    My substances abuse is alcohol and have tried 10 day stay in detox, but it didn't last.

    I had a few wines last night with a friend with dinner. He brought out an extra bottle and finished that, Feel so disappointed today.
    I didn't drink Saturday night, had a few Friday but had 3 days off previous.

    I have been to GP in past. Tried valium, naltrexone baclofen.
    Nothing seems to help.

    Boredom is big one, but having no motivation to do anything makes it hard.
    Kiz11 i have the exact same trouble with sleeping.

    I just resigned from my job (in mental health after 2 months as it didn't feel right)I

    Im 51 and single mum to 10 year old (4 adult children not living with me)
    Been a drinker most of my life, since covid and marriage break up 3 years ago its became a big problem.
    put on 20kgs and i hate myself for it.

    This is my first time here
    0 x
    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 548
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Monday Meetup

    Mon Apr 11, 2022 9:12 pm

    Hi @Kiz11 and thanks for sharing with us………….awesome work on 2 weeks clean!!!

    Boredom is a tough one. I found that going for walks, reading books, colouring, gardening, swimming, gym, movies, music, journaling, driving, walking the beach or just sitting there watching waves, cooking, taking the basketball to the local park and shooting hoops all helped. What are some things you enjoy doing? Or have stopped doing that you could start again? Or haven’t tried but always wanted to???

    AA meetings were also really helpful for me. I found a support network there, it gave me a place to be and some purpose. Have you tried AA or NA??

    I found sleep hard at the start but it got better over time. Have you tried speaking to your GP about help sleeping?

    I’ve found meditation apps helpful especially Smiling Mind. It has a range of sleeping meditations that can be used for the start of the night or if you wake up in the middle of the night. Journaling can help too. If you wake up in the middle of the night you could try writing down your thoughts to get them out of your head. I also found that daily exercise helped because it tired me out. Routine helped me too.
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