Episode 347 – Can you heal in the same environment you became sick?
Today we have Frank. He is 42, from Omaha, and took his last drink on May 22,2021.
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Highlights from Paul
Can you heal in the same environment you became sick in? Yes, but you can’t use the same consciousness or thinking that got you into the mess in the first place. There is a line that goes, when you quit drinking you don’t have to change much, you have to change everything. The key is, not all at once. Paul describes three critical changes: awareness, boundaries and staying in the body (don’t disassociate).
You are gaining strength. Adversity makes you stronger. You are healing and as you heal, those around you will heal as well.
Exact Nature exactnature.com Code: RE20
[10:38] Odette welcomes Frank
Frank to his last drink May 22, 2021. He is married with two children, and he works in medical staffing. He is a foodie, loves sports and playing guitar.
Frank started drinking in high school. It was a rite of passage at the time. He never had an off switch and could always outdrink everyone else. His tolerance increased. In his mid 30’s he noticed the hangovers getting worse and he was eating shame meals. By his 40’s the hangovers lasted two days and it wasn’t fun.
Frank was never a violent drunk. He was a raging jerk during recovery because he felt so terrible. His hangovers became progressively worse. He could barely get water down. Frank was good at covering up his drinking. He was sober for 30 days a few years ago and celebrated with a drink. His drinking progressed from there.
Frank’s turning point came during his anniversary dinner when his withdrawal symptoms were so intense, he was shaking, sweating, felt faint and nauseous. He knew something had to change; he wrote a four-page letter to his wife, spoke with his counselor, and found Recovery Elevator. His Dad and his brother were good sources during early recovery as they are both in recovery. Listening to podcasts and playing the tape forward helped.
Managing through sober “firsts” this year (college football, golf, concerts, 3-day weekends) has been a win.
A self-described weekend warrior, Frank enjoyed the sensation of alcohol, but never drank to escape anything; he just wanted to fit in. He used koozie cup holders to avoid questions from his drinking buddies.
He is now open about his recovery and his friends and family check in regularly and have let him know how proud they are of him. He now observes others drinking to excess and is relieved he doesn’t have to do that anymore.
Frank said his relationships are all positive. He loves waking up rested and he appreciates the memories he is creating with his kids. Frank and his wife are doing better.
Odette reminds us, “we are doing this”. Alcohol works until it doesn’t. It dims the good and the bad. Learning to stay present during uncomfortable moments give us an opportunity to grow.
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