July 2, 2013 at 11:27 am #37785
My name is Alana. I am a 40 year old woman. I am trying to change my life in a every positive way I can. I came from an alcoholic, difunctional home. I was raised by my mom. My dad didn’t want anything to so with me. I started using alcohol, drugs and tobacco at the age of eight. To make a very long story short, I am a very unhealthy person. I was addicted to alcohol, cigarettes, heroine, cocaine. I have had very abusive relationships and a very abusive marriage. I have two children, boys, ages 11 and 13. I have never wanted to be the person I became. At a very young age, I was in desperate need of help and wanted help desperately but no one cared enough about me to help me. I have been in and out of programs like AA and everything else you can think of, trying to get better. I have stopped doing drugs, alcohol and cigarettes for a while now. I am now on a medication called suboxone to help with my opiate addition. I am sick all the time. I changed my eating habits and began juicing fruits and vegtables because I was living on way too much sugar and junk. I want to join a local yoga class and begin exercising and I want to start meditating. I am trying many different things to help me get my body and mind back but its not working. I am tired all the time. my tiredness is extreme. I want so much to be a healthy person and to give my children the mother that they deserve but it seems like I am fighting a losing battle. because my energy is so low and doctors don’t know why, I ended up resorting to taking Adderall for energy. I am at the end of my rope and need any advice that anyone ecan give me to gain a healthy mind, body and life. I am tired of struggling.July 2, 2013 at 2:25 pm #37815EmilyParticipant
Hello Alana, its sad to hear your story. myself i have seen or myself i have had to go through some similar issues, so i hope this helps you.
1. i am very proud of you to open up and admit your problems that’s a very strong powerful thing to do, so well done you.
Now not everyone is a fan of going to see someone to talk too, have you tired it? don’t knock it till you do try it because you never know, ive had 4 myself for different things and some of the people i spoke to were fantastic and others not so.
Drugs and drink don’t help, they bring you down, and you need to see them as a bully, they are control and they don’t care about you.
Now down to business.
i personally love to write a good ‘to do list’
have you ever thought of doing one? clear your mind and write down everything you would love to do,
yoga? swimming? dancing?
i personally have used mediation and it has helped greatly with a dark past.
Your past doesn’t define who you are. you must find a way to let go of your past, i myself have spent a long time trying to let go of my past problems.
and i guess the best things that helped were friends, having people to trust and having mediation.
you will feel tired it is not an easy road but if you keep trying and you keep going it will get easier i promise.
the key is to remember your reasons why you want change. and thats your children and YOURSELF.
learn to love yourself, learn to look at yourself and think of all the wonderful things about you.
Eat good food, see good friends, see someone for help if it helps you and learn your past is the past and all that matters is now.
you can eat good food that tastes good and its cheap,
life is hard life can be a real bitch sometimes, but Alana its so very beautiful too.
i hope this helps, and i hope you write back i am here if you need someone, and i can try and help with any advice or just listening
i can go into better detail of things if it helps you in anyway
so dont feel like you cant write back to me because i am here
emJuly 2, 2013 at 2:26 pm #37816EmilyParticipant
Heres my email if you would rather speak via email than on tinybuddha
xJuly 2, 2013 at 4:28 pm #37852AruniParticipant
These are my suggestions – things that I do or that have helped me out of dark places and lead a more positive life. Maybe they can help you too.
First of all I would say there is both a physical and a mental/spiritual aspect to most problems.
On the physical side:
Make sure you have the best treatment that works for you. What I mean by that is make sure the medication you’re taking makes you feel better and that the doctor you have makes you feel better. Very important. Don’t put up with a doctor that doesn’t work for you. Or medication that doesn’t work for you.
Also on the physical side, it’s obvious but nonetheless true. Eat healthily. It’s very easy to give into the temptation of junk food. But when temptation rears it’s head, all you have to do is just disregard it for a few seconds and start preparing a healthy meal. Once you start preparing it you won’t be thinking about the junk food anymore. And certainly once you start eating the healthy food you won’t be thinking about the junk food at all. The benefits of eating healthily cannot be over estimated.
One the mental/spiritual side:
I highly recommend some sort of therapy. Most of us don’t have somebody who is objective that we can talk to about our problems on a regular basis. It can be very beneficial. Once again same as with the doctor. Make sure they work for you. That they make you feel better – or at least that they make you feel that it is positive in some way.
Surround yourself as much as you can with positive people. People that make you feel positive. It doesn’t matter who they are, whether you know them well or not. With those positive people be open and communicate with them and listen to them – engage with them.
The number one thing for me that gets me out of dark places is to concentrate, look for and recognise beauty wherever I see it, every day. It’s amazing what that can do to every part of your life.
Good luck and peace. And remember you are much stronger than you might think you are.July 2, 2013 at 4:51 pm #37855MattParticipant
I’m sorry its so tough for you right now, I hope you find your better days soon. There are few things that come to heart as I consider your words.
One of my teachers told me that when we go through dramatic changes we do the best if we give them space. In Buddhism, it is said that the greatest force for change is patient endurance. Much like a flower bulb needs time to open after it is planted, our bodies need time to heal from traumas. You are doing great! Overcoming addiction is tough. Tough! Right now, that is taking a lot of your energy.
Its important to give ourselves space to heal. Self care, such as laying in bed, taking a bath, sitting in nature, cooking a meal… all these can be done with that patient endurance. “Yes, this feels icky now, but I am stepping each step with the courage to keep going… here is this feeling, and it will fade. I am healing with each moment that I make a healthy choice, it is OK to be patient.”
With each step, you’re getting distance from it. Over time, your body will heal, and that frees the inner strength that’s now focused on recovery. Then, you will have the strength to become the person you dream to be. She’s in there… she’s the one who is shedding unskillful habits.
Right now, in this moment, it is important to choose your battles carefully. If you try to recover all at once, it is like banging your head into a rock. Trust that as you keep moving forward, what is tough now becomes easy as you practice. Said differently, each big thing that you work on takes effort, and that effort can tire us out. If you work on too many things at once, you might just be tired all the time.
For now, consider breathing meditation to help build patience. It can help us build concentration (increasing your strength) and help us let go and relax. It also helps us calm our minds so that we have the endurance to get through tough times. On YouTube, you can search for “jayasaro (5) counting breaths”, which has a simple and effective method.
Do you have a sponsor? Often times, being able to connect with someone who knows the struggle can help us believe that recovery is not just possible, it is who we really are finally getting to come out and play. At AA, did you open up to the group? I’ve found that this world is full of loving and wise people, and when we bear our soul to them we are not only given help seeing “what’s next, what’s here, what to do”, but also in raw strength in knowing we are loved.
I know you can do this. I’ve seen it done by people, and you seem to be asking all the right questions and having all the right frustrations. The main point at this point is you need nurturing. Hug, bathe, sing, sleep, breathe, talk… healthy ways of saying to your body that you are beautiful and deserve special care and attention. It does! You do!
MattJuly 2, 2013 at 10:47 pm #37866
Thank you so much for all the feed back…Emily, Aruni and Matt. I am so glad I found this site and decided to share. I don’t have many people in my life that I can share things like this with…or I should say, I don’t have very many people in my life that would give me positive feedback. I really can not thank all of you enough for taking the time to respond to my post. I am very tired…I don’t sleep well, that is why I am up at 1:45 am. I will write more tomorrow. Thank you all so much !! 🙂July 3, 2013 at 1:35 am #37868lianxiaoyueParticipant
First of all, you look great in the picture and I’m sure people who see you smile like that could feel your happiness too.
Sorry to know that you’re suffering, however, as you’ve said in your post, you’ve tried to doing so many positive things in order to become a better you and to live a better life. For yourself and for your kids.
Right now, I also have a few important things in life to deal with, career (I quit my good job, as I really don’t have passion for it), and relationship gets rough, I’m on diet (though I’m not fat, I want to be the girl I want to be) and other minor things like the exam I always want to take, but it seems I fear of it. I’ve been struggling for those for a while, and I also remember “less is more”, as when I’m trying to deal with all of it, I can do nothing but get overwhelmed.
I once read an advice from a book, it says, just form one habit at a time. My advice for you is you priority your goals first, then pick up one. For example, to eat more healthy, and just focus on it, develop methods to reach for it, till it becomes your habit. And I’m sure you can start to build your confidence by reaching your goal daily, if fail, then try agian. I guess that’s called persistence.
Not sure if my advice helps, but at least, you have to know and remember you’re not alone and there’re many people care about you and could offer some serious helpful advices.
Love your smile, and wish you happy.
ClareJuly 3, 2013 at 6:03 pm #37931Pat MerrittParticipant
You are so courageous! Your desire to change for your children is amazingly admirable. I would suggest sticking with that mantra! It’s for me and my kids! Our children are so instrumental in the happiness and growth in our lives. Any energy toward helping to make you and your family whole is worth every minute. The pay off ( not a spiritual term I know) will be when they see what their mother was able to achieve for them! What a lesson you will have taught them by experience. I am a mother of 2 beautiful girls but was raised by a very mean, dysfunctional and self centered Mom. My childhood was very painful. My saving grace was my kids. I tried to love them as I wanted to be loved. I have myself to thank for not repeating her behavior. My kids are my life! Yet believe me they have their own. The both live in the city and I live in northern NJ so they are strong enough to move into their own lives and dreams. Doesn’t mean I don’t complain about missing them though!
I am available to chat if you need to.
Oh – regarding your physical condition. I am a nurse too. I recently went through a physical fall and I already have several herniated discs in my back. I was sick for 3 months and I became so deconditioned physically I could hardly walk up my steps to my bedroom. I didn’t feel like eating either because I was hurting, and I also was not burning any calories to desire food. I’m glad you are open to medication. I know they get a bad rap in the “natural” community but sometimes our bodies need help and just a little medication can get us to a better place. As long as you are not relying only on meds to get you there. You seem to be making a real effort in all aspects of your life. It is a lot to do! Be patient with your body – it has been really abused. It may take as long to heal it as it took to abuse it……it is worth the wait. Give yourself some type of reward system. It’s okay to put stars on a calendar every time you do something positive. Then decide that after a month of stars – you get to buy or do something special. This will give you the motivation that might not be coming from anyone else. GREAT JOB. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK>>>I”M YOUR BEST CHEERLEADER. Take care….PatJuly 4, 2013 at 9:44 am #37956JackieParticipant
I am going out of my mind at the moment with worry , my daughter is being harassed by an older man who she had a short relationship with after breaking up with her long term boyfriend, her head was in bits (her words)
This man kept threatening her to tell everyone but she finally told us all when he started to come round the house, we told him we knew everything and he wasn’t welcome and that she is not interested but since then he wont stop phoning her – even though she blocked his number – hes using another phone! also hes been driving past the house too. We have called the police now twice and im now going out of my mind thinking scenarios that could happen. Its consuming my life and i cant sleep!
All I can do is pray for this al to pass…..please help me to cope !July 4, 2013 at 9:46 am #37957JackieParticipant
Im sorry i have posted this on your page as a reply…… Its my 1st time of using this site and not sure how to start!!
I wish you all the best in life you deserve to be happy !July 4, 2013 at 4:58 pm #38002luciaParticipant
Everyone’s feedback have had some pretty great pearls of wisdom for you. I’m sorry to read that you are having a tough time, it really takes a strong person to acknowledge and present the intention to make changes in their lives. Everyone has got it in them to make those changes, at times it won’t be easy but you’ve got a fan base here cheering you on. 🙂
Just to add to what others have touched upon, I really find the changing one habit at a time is a great idea. They say it takes about thirty days to change/adopt a new habit. I especially like the idea of make a list of at least 5 things you are thankful for everyday, helps you to remember there are still good things in life even when times are rough.
Something I have found to help me when times have been rough: take it one day at a time. You’ll have good days and bad days, and that’s okay. So if you’re wanting to start something, start small. A walk around the neighbourhood, take in the sun, the breeze that flows through the leaves on a tree. You can always build on that when you’re feeling ready to do something different. 🙂
Remember to take time for yourself.
Big hugs!July 9, 2013 at 5:50 am #38249
Thank you all for your feedback 🙂 its nice to see positive feedback..but I am not feeling too good about myself right now. I have been dealing with incredible fatigue….absolutely no energy at all….I came in contact with another woman who has problems being tired…she takes Adderall…I started taking it so I could just function…Im very mad and disappointed in myself. very disappointed. I just wish I could be a normal person who wakes up in the morning and is functional… I would give anything just to be a normal person who didn’t always resort to some sort of substance to make me better. I have been using substances to ” make myself better” since I was eight years old….now I am forty and no matter what I do, I come back to this spot of using substances to fix me in some way. I have really been working hard at changing my life and becoming healthy mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally…..I just think that I will never be ok with the way I am….it’s exhausting….I just want to be normal….I don’t want to be an addict anymore, I don’t want to be depressed anymore, I don’t want to be my worst enemy anymore….I really believe that we create our lives and bring forth everything in it, good and bad. and I think that I am just such a negative person througth and through that I will always bring only negativity into my life….I am totally aware of it …I listen to my self talk and the tapes that play in my head…but its just so deeply engrained that I don’t think I will ever be able to change it…see right there, negativitity…I guess I just have to keep going forward…I just don’t know what to do with myself anymore….any more suggestions ?? I want to stop my pattern of always resorting to a substance to “make myself better” and just accept myself and life for what it is…I am grateful that my life is a lot better than it used to be…I just have to get back on track…the right track….I know one thing for sure, I will never give up moving my life in a positive direction….I may I take a few steps backwards but I will always keep trying to move forward for my children …..I want a better life for my children …. I want to give them everything that I never got……I don’t mean just in the material sense…I want them to love themselves…be happy with who they are…I don’t want them to live like I have…with negativity and self-loathing. It’s a very painful and tiring thing to hate yourself inside and out….I never want my children to know the pain that I have known….I love my children more than life itself and need to be a power of example so they know that they can overcome any adversity that they may have in life….I want them to be whole human beings and love themselves inside and out…..I want them also to be proud of their mother…..I want them to look at me and be proud….I want them to be able to look back some day and really see that I did my absolute best I could…..I want to be able to look back with fewer regrets than I have right now….I want my steps forward to out number my steps backward….I need to start loving who I am for them to love who they are…I have learned from my children that they don’t learn from what we tell them, they learn from what we do. I may sound like I am just rambling on and on but I feel like as I wrote this a light bulb went off in my head and I now know what I need to do….I need to stop being to incredibly hard onmyself , stop being my own worst enemy and cut myself a little slack and just get moving forward again. Everything I just wrote may make no sense to whom ever is reading it but writing my thoughts like this helped me see things in a new way…this was very good for me ….very good 🙂 thanks for having this website available and for letting me write openly and honestly without the fear of judgement 🙂 Thank You 🙂July 9, 2013 at 7:52 am #38260MattParticipant
It does sound painful, the place that you’re in, and for that you have my sympathy. I love how you desire authentic happiness for yourself and your children, its a far too rare desire in this world!
David Burns wrote a book “Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy” which can help with the negative self talk. In the absence of the negative self talk, our mistakes are only information that we can use to change our behaviors for next time. In the presence of negative self talk, we can slip into spirals of painful feelings.
For instance, if we cook a grilled cheese sandwich for too long, it will burn and taste icky. One path is “OK, I will cook it less next time and see if that helps”. The other is “I can’t even cook a grilled cheese. Everyone can cook a grilled cheese but me. I want my kids to have a well cooked grilled cheese, and I am failing as a mother. I must conclude that i am a failure as a cook and a person and a mother.”
Burning the toast is really the only way we can learn. You’ve tried drugs as a source of joy and find that they don’t give it. That’s great! Its left some icky taste in your mind, but you learned the lesson and are struggling to cook a better grilled cheese. Alana, I wish you could see yourself through my eyes, because I see bravery, love, commitment, and healing. Don’t be afraid of failure… you’ve been through it before and know your love survives. Your failures are all part of something greater… burnt bread, drug addiction, ishy self-talk, your love of your children, your inherent beauty… all of these are leading you on a path where you are learning to cook.
Remember that you’re not alone! As you struggle with things, don’t be ashamed to ask for help. People suffer just like you, and we all have innovations that might help. You have the courage to jump, and have jumped, so now all that is left is to be patient with yourself as you grow your wings and fly.
MattJuly 12, 2013 at 9:05 pm #38522
thank you so much 🙂 I am feeling a little bit better. NO more substances 🙂 I am just going to keep my mind positive and when I start getting negative feelings, I will change them to positive. I really really like this siite…I really feel that I can tell honestly how I feel and I wont be judged. I thank you so much for the responses 🙂 its nice to feel that some one cares 🙂July 13, 2013 at 2:00 am #38523AudettaParticipant
Well done on your daily recovery. Just on the physical side, its worth getting to know the difficult side effects of suboxone, these are just a few: constipation, glossodynia, oral mucosal erythema, vomiting, intoxication, disturbance in attention, tiredness, palpitations, insomnia, withdrawal syndrome, hyperhidrosis, and blurred vision.
Adderall may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert. Do not take Adderall late in the day. A dose taken too late in the day can cause sleep problems (insomnia). Avoid drinking fruit juices or taking vitamin C at the same time you take Adderall. These can make your body absorb less of the medicine. Adderall is highly addictive. Mixing of Suboxone & Adderall should be fully researched for contraindications.
I know this may sound like a medical reply, but it’s important to know the facts and the symptoms of each drug, to elimate physical causes. We need to treat the whole person cognitive, physical and spiritual. How are you doing in all of these areas?
I wish you the very best in your life going forward.