Thursday, March 13, 2014

Everything Changes... part TWO, of two



EVERYTHING CHANGES...................But,  life goes on


part TWO, of two



So, thanks for following along :-)


------------Suboxone/Subutex taper, just plain ,,,, SUCKS !!!!   --------------
so, I'm finding it really important to NOT set myself up for failure, by saying, "I'm going to be OFF by August" but, in all honesty, I would love to be... I'd love to be down to LESS than FOUR MG, at the very least.... 
Right now,,,, I'm TRYING to drop to SIX.... and it's proving highly difficult.... it's nothing physical, that I can't handle,, I mean, I'm a little more stiff-jointed than usual, a little more achy, but that's it... it's the COMPULSION that I need to take SOMETHING to keep myself, sane, that is REALLY GETTING TO ME!!! 
Some people might think I'm crazy,
but I swear it's making me MORE sensitive than "normal" too. And yes, I realize I'm pregnant and that's a big part of why commercials make me cry right now.... I'm talking about being overly sensitive about EVERYTHING......... like what people say, or how they say it,,,,,,,,, the look Sam gives me when he's embarrassed of his own lack of control frequently..... It really sends me into a tail spin!!! and you know what "the cure" is right?
you got it,,,, what's worked the last, ALMOST three years......... taking more suboxone....... 
anyway,
I'm working on it....... I'm trying just as hard as I possibly can....... I know it's the RIGHT THING to do,,, the responsible thing to do,,,, because you just can't be selfish when you're a parent.... I made that mistake, of my own "comfort level" while pregnant before, and I'm sure not making the same mistake, twice. . . . 
just to keep you updated......
as for today, I took ten mg..... a little more than I planned, my average has been 8, but I'm really trying for SIX, daily....... have I mentioned I'm struggling???


----------Three years ago-----------
I was exhausted........ tired of lying,, tired of having to "hustle" every day,,, figuring out SOME WAY to get what I needed for the day.... I mean it's EXHAUSTING..... 
so three years ago, in March, I tried inducting on Suboxone once, but my tolerance/use was TOO HIGH, and ended up having a seizure.... I didn't lose consciousness for more than 3 minutes or so, and it actually happened inside the Clinic Building, so that was damn lucky...... At which point they told me I had to get my use tapered down pretty low OR, switch to a short acting opiate so it'd "clear" my system faster, and not compete with buprenorphine.
The important part , is I DID IT in APRIL.... and it's the best decision I ever made. I wish I would've "got it together" a little sooner, but maybe it just had to happen this way to "stick" 
Either way,, I'm here.... and I'm still doing well, in that department !!!!
What I told my Doctor the other day....
was that I'm pretty confident, I can get thru pregnancy without using. It's after the baby's here, and not consuming everything I do, that really worries me. . . . . See, this is just the ONLY thing that's worked, and I'm absolutely terrified, to use again. I don't ever want something having that much control over every thought I have, EVER AGAIN........
Anniversaries are weird, though..... there's almost this "pressure" to clean the slate, because there are FAR LESS EXPECTATIONS, that way..... 

Don't worry, I'm just "sharing" here, and these are not overwhelming feelings of using.... they are random thoughts... I call "sharing" these with other people or even just writing them down, "telling on my addiction" therefore, it's unable to gain any strength... it's when I do NOT share, I keep it all tucked away, deep in the back of my head, where my Addiction lives (along with that big ol' shit tornado I drag around w/using) when it can (and does) gain strength , get louder, harder to dismiss, that eventually leads to overwhelming cravings and/or plans on how I'll get away with it.
I highly recommend this practice to ANY recovering addict. Any person recovering from ANY addiction, it really has helped me a ton. Just like anyone else, I have good days and bad, happy days, and sad ones too. That's okay,,,,, and it's how it's supposed to be, when you are NOT self medicating to cope with feelings.

----------Recent Arrests/Media Coverage----------
Here in the very recent past,,,, there's been some arrests locally, that really hit me like a bag of bricks. Normally,,, when someone I "know" gets arrested/charged/convicted with a crime as a direct result of losing their battle, it makes me sad, makes me feel like I want to help in SOME way, or some thing close. But, 
the articles published recently,,,,,, involved some very close friends, from NOT very long ago. They were peers of mine, in one or more out-patient programs, group therapy, community service programs, ETC ETC.... And, if I'm being totally honest, ONE of them actually HELPED ME GET INTO TREATMENT,,, and I've always kinda looked up to her, leaned on her in challenging times, and she's been a source of solid support. It just goes to try and prove to me once more, we are all human, and we can all fall off the sober train really freaking fast.... What took YEARS of earning back, can disappear in literally seconds......
And, that my friends, is why it's so difficult to get back ON the wagon.
anyway,
it made me very sad. For some reason I thought of her family, too.... Her parents, and siblings who were all so incredibly proud and supportive, her kids she earned custody of, her employers that continually stood by her side going thru court/probation stuff.... That was "new" for me, to think not only about the person/addict, but about how a relapse effects the WHOLE SUPPORT SYSTEM..... it basically crumbles from within, doesn't it???
This all,
boils down to me, just wanting to be that much MORE aware of my own debilitating, incurable, & ever-present disease...... 
that's another question, I get quite a bit..... "so do you really believe addiction is a disease"
yes, I do.
While a lot of people on this planet believe it's a CHOICE..... I whole-heartily believe, that it in fact may be a choice AT FIRST,,,, but then it becomes an overwhelming compulsion, that gets stronger and more consuming BY THE HOUR....
I've read so much research work, studies and medical journal articles on addiction, including if/how professionals consider it genetic and/or  a disease, and a whole lot more. 
One article I remember very well,
said addiction basically attacks the SAME PORTION of your brain that tells you to SURVIVE.... For example eat, breath, sleep, love, ETC..... The same part of your brain, working the same way as your compulsion TO BREATH IN AND OUT..... Maybe that will help some people?? who have friends/loved ones either fighting this battle or not...... I hope it will. . . . . . And, I still cannot control that compulsion, I can only control how I react to it. 
Another article says, the people most likely to become addicted to opiates/pain pills are people with a generally low-performing dopamine receptors. . . . When they use opiates, they most likely get a boost of dopamine,  5-10 TIMES that of a normal person. So, they feel five times the relief/good/happy/normal feeling the dopamine triggers... No wonder we want more and more???   LOL
Well, I cannot believe it's been almost three years. 
Some days it feels like just a couple months, other days it feels like ten years ago. I know I wouldn't even recognize, the person in the mirror today, three years ago..... 

A LOT has changed, that's a total understatement........


---------Mike's Probation/General Everything---------
So even with his last polygraph, and "passing with flying colors" as to quote the polygraph tech himself,,, That didn't really change anything that I know of, regarding his probation/restrictions/rules. . . . 
Still, he and Samuel are allowed TWO supervised visits per week, two hours each. they are allowed to talk over the telephone, each night though, which does help immensely. . . . Especially with the behavior issues lately. Sam really doesn't like giving his Dad bad news about his day, I think he just dreads hearing him say, "I know you can do better" Which is pretty much the same thing I say, too. . 
It just helps a lot to have "back up"
Well to summarize everything over the last six months or so, Mike started working in October,  washing log trucks on weekends. He worked his way into some "shop" hours, working on the trucks and buildings on the property, and from there worked up to ON the job training to Drive LOG TRUCK.........
Something, he had always talked to me about doing, since he got a commercial licence. Well in December he took his class A test, (step up from the class B he had previously) and PASSED.... His boss still wanted him to get some more hours, "on the road" with someone riding along, so it wasn't until the first week of January,, he started driving SOLO,,, MAKING  a percentage per load. . . 
Well as it turns out, payroll is done monthly,,,, and his employer holds back almost two weeks, running payroll on about the 15th of each month, for the previous month, the first to the last day of that month. To give an example,,,,, Mike started driving SOLO on January 4th, but did NOT receive a paycheck, until FEBRUARY 15TH.....He was however, able to get a few small draw checks, to get by. . . . . 
Well,,,,, from October to the end of December, he basically worked seven days a week. . . 
Only being off early one day per week; to check in at Probation. As you can probably guess his probation fees/supervision costs/polygraph bills, were ALL really behind, including the court house and the restitution account to the state. All the above mentioned accounts, he's signed agreements at Probation to make "regular monthly payments"
Moving on,,,,, His Probation Officer ("PO" for short) knew of the situation, knew of when his first payroll check would be. . . . (remember that for just a second, k)
Let's back up to last May,,,,
and the "new" charge for unemployment fraud, which yes, was pretty much my doing. . . . And he did a plea bargain for 24 months BENCH probation, pay restitution, and 100 hours of community service. . Well last AUGUST, his PO reminded him he had to PAY $45 and go register, to START any community service hours.....It was this meeting in August the PO reminded him he had a due date of February 1st, 2014.
WELL MIKE FORGOT that part,
and obviously didn't have fifty bucks at any point really,,,,,, until recently..... and let's face it, there wasn't anyone really willing to "loan" him $50, either. . . so when he had the TIME to do it, he didn't have the money, YES YOU HAVE TO PAY TO DO COMMUNITY SERVICE.
And, when he had the money,,,,
Oh I forgot to tell you,,, his PO CALLS ON FEB 11th, AND SAYS, OOPS GOTTA TURN YOU IN FOR  A VIOLATION SINCE YOU DIDN"T GET YOUR SERVICE HOURS DONE... I REMINDED YOU LAST AUGUST AND YOU SAID YOU DIDN"T HAVE ANY MONEY... SO I'll put in for an out of custody hearing, and I'm going to recommend a 14 day sanction.
Mike gets the papers in the mail, and has NOT ONE, BUT TWO VIOLATIONS..
and yes,
the PO TURNED HIM IN FOR NOT PAYING TWO DAYS BEFORE HIS FIRST PAYDAY.......
Want to guess, how much he's paid SINCE FEB 11th, When the violation papers, were turned in???????


1. CLATSOP COUNTY PROBATION   2/18/14                   $   150.00

2. CLASSES/TREATMENT              2/20/14                    $     80.00

3. CLATSOP COUNTY COURT-  Fines/Restitution-- 2/13/14

account #    618-10-05-1                                               $   710.00
                   618-10-05-2                                               $   358.00
{THESE TWO ACCOUNTS ARE PAID IN FULL NOW}

4. RESTITUTION TO STATE OF OREGON, UNEMPLOYMENT RECOVERY  
(THEFT CHARGE RESTITUTION)

first payment,    2/13/14                                                $ 1,451.00
second payment  2/20/14                                                $ 4,066.00
                    
                                    Total paid on restitution    $ 5, 521.00

TOTAL PAID ON MY BEHALF SINCE STATEMENT FOR COURT HEARING =   
                               
                                          $6,739.00

Is that some effort, in your un-biased opinion??? I certainly think so... and seems pretty MESSED UP to turn the dude in,,, TWO DAYS BEFORE PAYDAY... I mean, how the F is that helping him in ANY WAY
that's what I'd like to hear the answer to.....
Thankfully, he'll have the attorney by his side, in court,  his boss offered to attend court, on his behalf to verify his unpaid driving/training hours, and that he worked seven days a week, and that his first actual paycheck wasn't until February 13th.... A year to the day, he was released from jail.... 
In my opinion, he's made tons of progress in almost every aspect of his life. . . I really hope he can get off supervision without the suspended prison term being imposed. Not just because I don't want Sam to go thru that, but because I honestly think he's changed, somewhat...... Although I'm not around him nearly as much, I can just tell by his actions especially in times of stress/anxiety/worry that he's grown up.... I don't know how else to put it. 
I'm still amazed on how our country's judicial system works almost solely on the plea bargain, after stacking as many charges as possible on a person, forcing them into a corner , intimidating them until they "fold" and either, take their sentence or go on supervision. Both resulting in paying the justice department TONS OF MONEY over the next years of their life.... I mean,, Not everyone "deserves" what they get, and I believe it's because of OVER charging one thing, and intimidating the person into signing....
overall,
I'd say he's doing well... One year down, two more to go. . . . Unless he can do some kind of after hours counseling , the therapy described in his "treatment recommendation" that was ordered by the state and cost 2500 dollars..... If he can do that, then he could possibly file for a hearing, and explain/argue why he should be OFF supervision.... the attorney said, it's not worth the time or money, until the counseling is done though. I'm proud of him for making the changes he has, but I also remain very guarded, kind of "waiting/watching to see what happens"
anyway,,,, there's his update.


--------------LASTLY,,,,, LIFE in general;;;;; on life's terms-------------
After reading my post from yesterday,,,,, I'm somewhat concerned, I may have come off like my own Mom,,, didn't try or didn't understand my problems in school, or as a child.... Now, not having ADHD, I'm sure she can't "see" things, or recognize behaviors,  like I can for Sam... I have absolutely NO DOUBT that she tried everything she could to help me though.... I also think, the 80s were not a good time to be a kid in school with ADHD, anyway!!! since they didn't know JACK about it, at that time as it was.... And what they did know, most viewed as a disciplinary issue, and not a disorder... Oh!! more detentions!!! Yep!! that was thier 'master plan' back then....
Anyway,,, my point is,,,,, I have always maintained my mom and dad did the best they could, did what they thought was right, and no matter what anyone else thinks, THEY RAISED A DAMN GOOD PERSON !!!!!

Another thing,
My Mom and I have been getting along better in the last couple years, than I ever can remember getting along growing up.... Not to mention this is probably the first time in my LIFE I feel "safe" to be honest with her. . . . that's huge for me....... I've come to value what/how she thinks of me, and the choices I make. It's my honest opinion, ALL OF US just want to make our mom and/or dad PROUD OF US....
Just because we make mistakes, doesn't mean we cannot recover, or make up for it, overcome it and move on as an even better person later. . . . 
I'm pretty sure my entry a month ago or so, says, it's just recently that I have begun to understand my parents, and some of their behaviors, NOW..... Only because BEING A PARENT really helps you see where the hell they were coming from......
what a job!!!!!!
the most overwhelming, never-ending job you'll ever LOVE unconditionally.... 
pretty much sums it up!!!!!
i don't think you can understand how much your parents loved you, until you have a child,,, or adopt a child, ETC ETC ETC.... Being responsible for another HUMAN LIFE, is the most responsibility there is....
And the most fun & rewarding experience ever, I think too......

With that,
I'm gonna wrap this up, and say GOODNIGHT!!!!!!

it was so nice of those of you that messaged me, called, sent a text ETC ETC ETC today,
to give me words of encouragement, or share your own experiences like what I'm going thru with Sam right now !! it was SO NICE and unexpected to hear from like FIVE PEOPLE in the last 24 hours....
I just want to say 
THANK YOU SO MUCH,,,, You'll never know how much it really meant......
thank you for not giving up on me, and not forgetting about how much I really do struggle....
THANK YOU 
THANK YOU
THANK YOU

-----all my love--------
*****amber********

















heres my STUPID BUBBLING TIRE,,, I just bought not even a month ago!!! yes, it was used, so no warranty... on tomorrows' list??? ONE MORE USED TIRE,,, yep, you betcha.                                              

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