Relapse and Recovery


“Relapse is A Part of Recovery”

I’ve said these words so many times when supporting other addicts, but believing it when it is myself is a lot harder than I realized. No, I didn’t slip and use an opiate, I didn’t try some crazy new drug, but I did relapse. Taking 6 times the amount of my prescribed muscle relaxer to just have an hour where I did not want to die from the pain in my neck. (EDIT: I apparently cannot count shocking I know. This med is once a day and in less than 24 hours I took 22 pills, 6 at a time).I realize how crazy that sounds. I realize that alone could have killed me. I JUST DID NOT CARE. Imagine the worst pain of your life and then imagine the weather cycles controlled that pain. What would you do to make it stop? Doesn’t matter if it’s right or wrong. It really doesn’t. I had a prescription for a long acting opiate and it scared me so I shredded it. Neck pain, the same reason that led me to the opiates to begin with. Anything I say sounds like an excuse or rationalization. Why didn’t you just ask for some pot? Because I need to pass a drug test. You should have called Physical Therapy: yes I should have, but I didn’t. There are 500 other things I could have done, and I didn’t. It’s been raining since Tuesday and it won’t stop before Monday. While all of these suggestions seem helpful to you they come out as accusations just like all my “reasons” come out as excuses.

So today, day 63 turns,back into day 1 and I am going to tell myself exactly what I have told every other addict who finds themselves at this point: “relapse is a part of recovery, but it doesn’t mean you have to stop. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and reset your clock. You made a mistake and that’s okay. Anyone who says otherwise does not understand the nature of addiction. It doesn’t do anyone any good if you stop now so dust yourself off and start over now.  It isn’t going to do you any good sitting down there crying. You did it, it happened, now move forward with the intent of not doing it again. NONE of this works if you give up. It’s your life, fight for it”

I wonder if that has actually ever helped anyone? I spew variations of that speech to anyone who is upset about relapsing. Yes, relapse is a part of addiction but then what? How do you just go about the process starting all over again? It is beyond disheartening. I refuse to take my ambien because it gets me high, I shredded the prescription for opiate medication. I wasn’t looking for a high yet here I am. Day 1 sitting in front of my computer crying just like before only this time I don’t feel very hopeful.