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Hello my friends now from the other side. The sober side that is... This is going to be long. And in parts so I apologize now but I think it's important to get the whole story. I had wls in July 2009. My highest weight was 398 lbs and I remember praying that I wouldn't go over 400... That or maybe my scale didn't. Either way I could not see a 4. Or regardless of a moderately successful career, higher education, and steady boyfriend (now husband) I would have rather killed myself. Looking back at that statement I should have known then that troubles lie ahead. I weighed 180 lbs when I graduated from high school in 2000. I was well liked. Fairly smart. I was actually the fricken homecoming queen and not out of sympathy BC I was the fat girl that got picked on as a kid, but truly bc I was popular and well liked. To this day the hometown still likes me... But truth be told I never liked me. I went away to college and ate. A lot. I was introduced to Wegmans Pittsford. The mecca for prepared late night food. I went to school at Nazareth College and was introduced to the infamous garbage plate...a Rochester NY original. My freshman 15 turned into 50... Maybe even 75 lbs. I stopped counting. I was always moving tho. Constantly involved in sports, activities, I was a resident assistant for 3 years at one point in charge of the freshman BOYS lacrosse recruits. I graduated and needed a size 3-4x grad robe. I cried. My father has been sick my whole life. He has ankolosyn spondolitis (def spelling issues there), rheum arthritis, and Chrons to name a few. He's been on narcotics his whole life basically but his DOC has always been alcohol. I swore, based on his behavior, that I'd never drink. I would never be an addict like him, my two aunts (also diagnosed w arthritis) and his mother/my grandmother. He worked. And he drank. He shit in my toybox once when I was a kid thinking it was the can. My mother threw him out once when he was tanked while I huddled my younger brother at the top of the stairs swearing we wouldn't do this. Ever. Fast forward. My brother has been an addict since he was 16? Using any type of substance he could get his hands on. I remember taking him to treatment and telling the counselor I had no hx of addiction myself. I was a therapist after all and I KNEW better. I worked in mental health for about 12 years, mainly as an inpatient therapist. I started working for the state of NY shortly after my child's first birthday. I was also waitressing. This was about 2 1/2 post RNY. I was down 130 lbs, had a beautiful baby and a great hubs. My shift was 11:30-8 pm sun thru Thursday. I hated the hours and never saw my family. My back has always been an issue and my primary quickly referred me to pain management for my pain. I went to pain management and would have bottles of loratabs laying around. I'd usually only take one or two a week after waitressing Friday and Saturdays. So I had a good stock. My mother in law also was going to pain management so if I really hurt she would give me an oxycontin and an oxycodone. Again she would only take one or two pills a day and would have bottles of medication sitting around. I remember taking my first oxycontin. 30 mg ER. I puked. It made me so sick bc it was so strong. Meanwhile, I started getting more depressed working these awful hours and was getting closer and closer to my (male) boss. He casually mentioned he used loratabs/hydrocodone as well and if I took an extra it would make me happy happy happy. I was hooked. I spent the whole year working there with him basically high as a kite. 6 pm would roll around and we would pop 2-3 tabs and act like the lunatics we worked with. Pretty soon my 2-3 became 5-6. Then more. And more. I was running out of my script and my tolerance was getting greater. I convinced my pain management doc to add on a long acting med, fentanyl, claiming that the pills weren't cutting it due to absorbtion. This was partially true, as when I did then take my now percocets they didn't last long enough. So after being unsuccessful at getting this doc to up my meds I switched pain management docs to a newer younger guy that I had heard I could get anything from. Fast forward. I left the state job and during the next two years I had 6 surgeries from RNY complications. This also played a large roll in my increased usage. Its now summer of 2014. Im prescribed 60 mg of oxycontin 3x a day and 30 mg of roxicodone 4x a day. FOR what you ask? Degenerative disc disease. Arthritis. At 32 years old. I'm also at this point running out of my script early and buying anything I could find and taking pills left and right from any one I could find them from. I lose my job because I am late. We lose our apartment and move in with my parents. November rolls around and I wake up withdrawing terrible. No meds. No money. No job. I go to rehab for the first time at Glenbeigh. In the end we find out I don't have insurance and I end up leaving 8/days in. I'm at least detoxed and finally admitting I am a mess. I'm sober with the help of meetings for about 10 days when I relapse due to pain again. I go back to pain mgt and swear I won't share or tell anyone. I immediately start the same stupid behaviors. Buying. Selling. Sharing. Etc I'm a mess again. I go to detox at the local hospital this time, as I can't afford anything else. I fear I'll see my former clients (I do). This is march 2015. Sorry this is so long but I feel it's important to get the whole story... There's no getting away with it now. The hospital calls my pain management doc and blows me in. I'm done I figure. He agrees somehow to keep me on as a patient and to put me on Suboxone. The detox unit detoxes me using methadone. I immediately start Suboxone and do fairly well on it. Going in monthly just like I was for pain management. The pain tho, is still there, so occasionally I continue to use a pill here or there (which doesn't work really because Suboxone blocks that...durrrrrrrr Libby) but old habits die hard and the pain was obnoxious. I do okay...not fabulous until July 2015. I relapse. I somehow convince the pain management doc I need meds for a month and use them all in 3 days. In my defense I went from the equiv of 8 mg of suboxone twice a day to 10 mg of roxicodone 4 times a day. Uhm. Not good anyway you look at it. I end up at another detox facility as the local hospital deems me not sick enough. Uhm WHAT? So I go to another facility where I detox with the help of suboxone or any meds and on the LAST day there, pain management doc decides he will take me back again and let me continue suboxone. I take first dose the day I leave and am out the door back home to parents house where daily use and hustling is happening. Operation get the eff outta there is on. I end up switching over to the clinic of the detox center and the doc there. Its a rough, hard program. I am required to go to counseling, group therapy 2x a week and meet with the doc for Suboxone. I also start a job at this point after not working for a long while. I switch to a cash only Suboxone doctor in November. He seems legit at first...was cheaper to go to him than pay my deductible for the year.... I do okay. I'm not perfect at this point. We move. I start drinking. Marital issues, money issues, trust issues....ISSUES. Life on lifes terms actually is what it is but when you want to blame everyone else on your problems....well you do. I end up losing new job due to being sick. I had my RNY revision revised on Dec. 30 and of course test positive for diff meds at my sub appointment. They let me use my HSA card to pay, so no problem, new year, new money...should be good. Come back in two weeks doc says... Two weeks later...$120...we can't take your card. Uhm what I say? You took it just fine two weeks ago? Oh well the policy actually is that you have to be a patient for 6 months in order to use a card. What. The. Fuck. No one has money. No one will borrow me money (except one person but it was already too late I figure). I decide enough is enough. Suboxone withdrawal felt like death to me. I go to the hospital with little hope that I will be admitted as I had heard NO ONE will help you detox off of Suboxone. Be warned, it is true thus far from what I find. I immediately use whatever I can find and have withdrawals from that as well. I am withdrawing so bad from the combination that I try to kill myself/cry for help by wrapping a usb cable around my neck in front of my husband. Oh side note: I've been drinking 4 bottles of wine/box every 1-2 days since November...bonus. Deal with issues? NAHHHHH...drink them away people. So I take a handful of klonopin (benzo's) in an attempt to sleep but alas i just keep screaming/kicking/crying all night long. Finally I take a handful of muscle relaxers in hopes that the creepy crawlies as I like to call them or restless leg syndrome will just go away long enough for me to sleep. I tell the counselor at the hospital all this. I end up in the psych ER for literally five minutes and then I am admitted to detox. Thank YOU GOD. I was again on a methadone taper, along with a Valium taper for the etoh withdrawal. I never want to take Suboxone again. The withdrawal from that was literally hell on earth. This "doctor" was no help. He cut me off cold turkey simply because I didn't have the cash when I needed the refill. I am disgusted by my dependence on this and doctors in general... No alcohol. No benzos. I've taken a tylenol and a robaxin. I am working on making appointments to meet with several different outpatient providers, including a legit pain management doctor, a methadone maitenence clinic where the physician treats pain management addicts, and good ole therapy and psychiatry. I'm trying to figure out if I can handle not being on anything. I have to see a spine specialist and rheumatologist again to figure out how to treat my chronic health issues. I have to figure out how to deal with life on lifes terms. I used to tell people that having WLS was the hardest thing I have ever done, because they don't rearrange your brain, only your guts...well guess what? THIS is the hardest thing I've ever done. Stay sober for more than 3 days. THIS is what keeps me up typing my whole life story to a bunch of strangers (minus a few) and hoping that someone will read this mess and say, DAMN I am never doing that. THIS is what I need now...support. A kick in the ass once in a while. I am not sure how to deal with the pain. I'm not sure how to deal with my issues or feelings, but I will tell you this... one day at a fucking time. Love you all..thanks for listening. If you have any questions about opiate or alcohol detox more specifically, please ask. I'm an open book and frankly, I'm proud I finally feel at peace with myself to work on just that. Myself.

Comments

  1. Hey lady! I know we've only chatted randomly since Naz days, but I'm proud of you for writing this, sharing your story and and putting it all out there. I'll be thinking of you while you're on your journey! Xo

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