The land of no self-hate – Episode 10

How many years did you count between the first thought: ‘Maybe I should not be drinking so much?’ and actually quitting?

Apart from thinking this on a daily base… it took me more than 20 years for it to sort of get it to the forefront of my brain and another 10 years to actually quit. I literally knew that I would get addicted to alcohol at the first glass I took. I also downplayed it by thinking ‘Ooh, since I know that, I will be able to control it.” Yup. Not.

Weeks ago I looked at negative self talk and self-hate while reading a book called ‘There is nothing wrong with you’ from Cheri Huber. That had quite some impact and caused some mind shifts but the execution of replacing self-hate with self-love is not there yet. Not that I expected that – it is difficult to change behaviour. And this behaviour has been going on longer than my drinking career so I’m guessing it is more difficult to change.

For me, negative thinking has a lot in common with addiction: repetitive destructive behaviour. Also: it keeps me away from what really is. Even though that reality generally is nicer than the negativity. Keeping a watch on negative thinking was really helpful and insightful for a while. Also: I felt really happy and it is A-MA-ZING how much energy I had during the day. I was surprised by my openness, the good intention and love, joy and activity which came floating to the surface. I felt the same energy I felt when I was a child in my safe years. Then something happened, everything backfired and I totally lost myself only to go back to negativity and self-hate with even more energy. Sound familiar?

I had the same with trying to quit drinking. I would play with the thoughts to quit and then try it for a week. Something would happen and I would go back to drinking and most of the time I would catch up with the amount of ‘lost’ glasses during the week.

2 Weeks back the cat got really ill. At some point I was so down that I hoped she would quietly slip away into eternity so I could do the same. Very often it is only the cat which keeps me here. Could be a mind trick. Hope I never have to find out. I do feel that every time I return to these dark thoughts they get edged in me, where they even out the road to destruction. In trying to feel into / look at these thoughts I found I have a difficulty with connecting to people. I can love but I can not be loved. I can not let people in. This becomes more and more apparent now I experience how lonely my existence is in these dark moments. I have friends, very good friends. Friends who carefully listen to all this which you might find difficult to read because dark or because repetitive and boring. But in those dark moment that does not matter because this ‘hole in the soul’ is so much darker and bigger than anybody can fill.

I’m not sure what caused this ‘hole’. Do I miss my vanished twin brother? Yes, very much so. A partner in my life? Not specifically. Do I miss, I don’t know fundamental idea of goodness of the world, faith? Yes. Or maybe I miss myself? Yes, very much. What I do to myself is cruel, soul crushing. If anybody would do that to anybody else I would go berserk. And still, somewhere in my life I started to believe, or maybe I even made it up myself, that hating me is the best thing I can do. And I never changed. It is so engrained that it takes more than 3,5 years of sobriety to even get an inkling of it. And then, when trying to quit I this behaviour it calls me back and punishes me for leaving with even more and more darkness. And even though I guess this is learned behaviour be it picked up by an eager student, I still do it all to myself. Cunning, baffling and powerful.

So… I have tuned down the watch on self-hate to let the dust settle a bit and see how I can work on this from another entrance. I need to get my negativity act and food addiction together because they both keep me from being clear and from being honest to myself and other people. As long as I keep on eating away my own shadow, keep on disliking myself for perceived weaknesses, I will keep on transferring this dislike and anger to others. Not good.

So, looking at shadows is good. Ramadan is past so I am eating chocolate and refined sugar again, within 1 day I was back at my usual intake. I eat it and at the same time really dislike it and feel bad. Sound familiar? πŸ™‚ And every day, even now I think: tomorrow I will do it differently. Cunning, baffling and powerful.

Somehow quitting addictive stuff and behaviour jogs memories of events past. Part of quitting the chocolate and refined sugar were (mini) trauma’s I have encountered while living abroad without my parents at age 15/16. In real life and in the sober blogosphere I have met so many people whose life has been damaged and put to a halt because of severe (sexual) trauma and consequently addiction. My traumas are not so severe in comparison with most but I can not seem to get away from them. Whenever I do get really clear, other events keep on popping up. I watched part of the Trauma and healing online conference but I sank so deep that I could not follow-up.

Abuse trigger warning for the next few Italic paragraphs till the fat print.

No chocolate – no sugar brought back this memory from sitting in a tiny park like spot in the country side, next to an enormous white water river, reading a book, my lower legs dangling down the quay/ledge which had been put in place to keep the river from eating in on the environment. A guy comes up, he must be in his twenties, I was 16 or so. Even though I do not trust him we chat because I can not get away safely. I make sure to steer away from anything which might indicate interest in him or look like advances. I try to bore him with excessively speaking about the book I am reading. (Ha! Nothing changed there :-D) At some point he starts requesting I go with him to his house to have sex. I sort of joke around the issue knowing that downright offending or refusing him makes things worse. He comes back with; “Why would you talk to me if you do not want sex?” Followed up by: “We have sex now otherwise I push you off the ledge.”

I would not be able to stop him from where I sit and falling down would have meant sure death. Even at age 16 I make jokes like: “Is that how you pick up all your girls? Not sure it is such a succesful line….” trying to take the sting out of it while trying not to show how my hands trembled and I am so scared I feel I can not even stand-up. He was serious. Not so much in wanting to kill me but he was very thick headed, possibly officially retarded (sorry, not inclined to look for nicer words here). His intent and anger where very real and also he did not seem to have the faintest idea that falling into a deep white water river with rocks all over can not be easily survived – specifically with the 6 meter waterfall further down and a following 12 meter waterfall within a 100 meter. He just did not care. He wanted what he wanted and I refused that so I had to be hurt.

Also: even though the place was max 10 meters away from the road and bus-stop, at that moment there was nobody around. Passing by cars had made it seem a safe spot but when they do not actually stop there is no safety to be found. And even now I have the idea that I have to explain the surroundings to you to make sure that you do not think me silly. I had to come up with silly jokes and conversation for 5 minutes for some car to pop up at the car park 30 meters further before I had the guts to stand up and go home. My knees buckled and I almost shit my pants. I walked home, checking at every turn in the road to see that he did not follow me.

At that time I had stopped speaking about things like this to people because anybody would start with “What did you wear?” and “Why did you even go there?” and “He would not speak to you if you did not give him the idea that you were available.”

I can see now how every bit of anger I held against guys like this was redirected inwards by being blamed for their behaviour.

This is how the female spirit is killed in this world. This is how our freedom and sovereignty is taken

What would a woman who loves herself do? She would love herself. How will I get there? Not sure. Going to bed would be a good thing. πŸ™‚ It always is. And tomorrow slowly start examining and taking loving actions.

I am happy that I quit be it in a dark way. Even though my days have been rather nasty for a long time, I know it was worst when I drank. The guilt and the shame, my god. Unbearable. I literally could not look people in the eye. And that physical feeling of being bloated and stuffed. The high blood pressure. Ooh! Yeah, no sugar, no chocolate made my blood pressure drop quite some points. Eating it makes it rise; I feel my blood pumping in my ears when I lay down on my pillow. So: not good. I also appreciated getting more veggies in because of having better eating habits. Veggies are good.

Sorry for another way too long post. Hope you are doing well.

Wishing you a nice sober week.

xx, Feeling

 

 

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Reminder: online summit ‘Recovery 2.0’

Hi there,

Soon you will not know what to watch anymore! Summit overwhelm! Well, if you got to this page because you searched for ‘addiction’ or you notice you or somebody in your surroundings has a tendency to self-destruct in no matter what way… check out Recovery 2.0Β Β 

Also: if you happen to be depressed or experiencing other mental illnesses, quiting alcohol can greatly improve your life. The booze industry usually does not tell you that so I doing that here. πŸ™‚

Hope you enjoy!

I for one am happy that I stopped drinking.

xx, Feeling

Free online summit: Mindfulness

Hi there,

You thought it was wedding season? It is summit season! Here is one on mindfulness.

Hope you enjoy. I am currently watching Gabor MatΓ© in the healing trauma summit. Gabor is known as ‘The Addiction Specialist’ in the world.

I am happy that I quit drinking, and chocolate and am working on sugar.

xx, Feeling

Reminder: healing trauma summit

Hi,

Just want to remind you the healing trauma summit has started.

More info and a link here.

I am grateful that I quit drinking. Life is pretty dark lately but I found since I’m in a bad place I might as well do difficult things so I do not have to do those when I’m feeling good. So… on day 22 or 23 without chocolate. And on day 4 without refined sugar or man made substitutes of that like aspartame. I exclude soft drinks and cookies and the likes but not stuff where sugar is not the ‘main ingredient’ like a sauce. I am making good choices there though. Obviously I started transferring my chocolate addiction to sweets after I quit chocolate. It was tough, not so much to control the urges, that is ok, If motivation does not come from myself it comes from doing Ramadan-light (no there is no such thing, just a made-up word) and thinking: if the hug-buddy can do full Ramadan (no drink, food, sex during daytime which runs from 4:30 I believe to 21:45 something) – I can do no chocolate at all. πŸ™‚

The tough part is that I had a few, as I call it psychotic experiences; e.g. while biking through town I saw people’s faces and bodies change to skeletons and also the colour of everything changed in flashes. It are ‘flashes’, at most half a second but pretty disturbing. I realised that if I were to lose myself into it I will go nuts. So breathe, relax and drink water. What worried me is that I actually felt so down at some days that I wanted to lose myself in the flashes, take them seriously and freak out. Breathe, relax and drink water. I think to know that this is ‘just’ another way of my system to look for a way out of this reality. I am pretty convinced the reality of what I see in those flashes is a reality, just notΒ  the one I think is a healthy place for me to be. I’m thinking realities are like a drawing on a computer: when done well a drawing exists of layers covering each other; first a some basic shapes, then a grid to fill it in, then a colour layer, a structure layer, a shade layer and then some details.Β  As humans we only a one or two layers, cat’s e.g. see the world totally different because they have other eyes. Sometimes, in my case under severe stress, something in the brain wires wrong and it pushes on the wrong layer tab. Very uncomfortable. Breathe, relax and drink water. It is funny how all my life I have had knowledge of that ‘tab’ but I have stayed clear off it like I stay clear of the door to lala-land. Ok. Question: does anybody else have flashes of crazy?

Guess I am coming closer to what is ‘ailing’ me and something inside wants to protect me from meeting that. Fixed it the only way I could by overeating sweets. 😦 But hey, tally ho! Onwards I go. πŸ™‚ Maybe I should be feeding (talking to) my demons by now. Might be more constructive than fighting flashes of psychotic experiences with watermelon and dates.

So substituting big time. Obviously. I can not do the cold turkey no sugar anymore. I can not do anything cold turkey anymore. I can do baby steps πŸ™‚ So I do baby steps: no chocolate, and when the cravings for that have settled and the no chocolate headache is gone (9 days!!!) I continued to wonder about the next step. Next step done. I only eat natural sugars now and you can imagine that I stocked up on fruit and dates. πŸ™‚

Here a recipe for a lovely desert, most likely this is for 2 persons, but I ate it on my own. Still losing weight though. Well, truth be said it feels like a TREMENDOUSLY BIG meal. πŸ™‚ Quantities of eating is the next thing that is on my list. But baby steps, baby steps. One of the baby steps I am doing right now is getting back to eating home cooked meals twice a day. I’ve thrown away all the ‘thou shallst do this and that’ – only 2 home cooked meals and I am noticing they are getting more healthy during this process anyway. Baby steps Well, apart from this one. Although one could argue that it contains fruit and chia seeds.

BIG MEAL PRESENTED AS DESERT

Cut 2 dates into tiny slivers and put into a small bowl, cover with boiling water and what is that word: squash with a spoon until you have some ‘dilution’. Then add 4-5 tablespoons of coconut milk to an equal amount of chia seeds. The original recipe I had at the Vietnamese restaurant had vanilla in the chai but that comes with refined sugar so I left that out. Leave to swell over 5 minutes at least, add water in tiny tiny bits if you feel the seeds could still expand. The seeds must swell up like crazy and coat themselves in a gel like substance.

Heat up a frying pan and add a little coconut oil or butter to lightly cover the surface. Cut 2 bananas in halves and cut those in halves length wise so there is a flat surface to them. Put those in the pan, flat side under and fry (bake?) on low heat, cover with a lid.

In another small frying pan put a teaspoon of coconut oil, heat, add a handful 20-25 brown almonds and toss about cheffy so the almonds are coated. Now put back on a low heat till they ‘pop’ and spread a beautiful aroma. In between cut tiny slivers of fresh ginger to taste and add to the nuts. You can use powdered ginger but realise these powdered herbs always need to be heated for 5 minutes through and through so in this pan without moist they would burn.

This would be the time to check on your banana’s, the flat side should be brown, if not, take the lid off, crank up the heat and keep an eye on it. They go from pale to dark quickly due to high sugar content. Then use a spatula or 2 forks to turn them around bake till you are ok with the colour.

In between cut some peel of an ecological. (!!!) citrus fruit (without the white) in tiny slivers and add to the nuts, stir around a few times and add the 1 cup of cooked and cold rice. Mix and heat up, it is ok for the rice to become a little brownish here and there. Place nicely on a plate and enjoy.

If this is not enough one could tart it up with coating the bananas in coconut flower before baking. Then add some more oil to the pan. Maybe slow-fry pieces of pineapple the same way. Or lightly toast coconut flakes or almond flakes and decorate the fried bananas. Or possibly add ice cream but then again: that mainly contains refined sugar. Possibly tiny slivers of mint might be good. Well, hope you enjoy. πŸ™‚

Currently still unemployed, not looking for a job, receiving sick leave money from the government, based on my ‘profile’ I have been put at the bottom of the list for treatment. Not sure what that means, but it does mean that I am not getting any treatment obviously. Not sure what that means. Also: I am not up to anything anyhow.

I am grateful in a sort of depressed way about quitting alcohol and sugar. I have no ‘will power’ left to put into these next steps to healing so I need to do the way I can: through knowledge and baby steps. The goal is to unaddict, ‘get my body back’ and also to not have the mind fog anymore. To get back on that road of becoming clear which I set off onto when I quit drinking. If not for me, then to minimise the damage I do to others in not being clear and having and addictive personality.

Wishing you a nice sober day.

xx, Feeling