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PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:11 am 
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Hello All,

I've been a long time lurker here, I posted once when I was really down and depressed during my taper but I thought I'd go ahead and start a new thread off the Sub and share my experience. This forum seems to be the only one on the internet that gives me encouragement. Too many horror stories out there.

I was on Subs for apprx 4 years ( I can't even remember now), previously on Methadone maintenance for 4-5 yrs and in active addiction (Oxys) prior to that. This has been a long time coming. I feel like I have preparing for this moment for half my life. My main motivation is that my husband and I really want to have children and I personally cannot knowingly get pregnant on Subs. I've done it all by the book, honestly have been clean from any illegal drugs since I first started the MMT. I've gotten healthy (lost over 100lbs, quit smoking, etc). Tapered to .25 mg and jumped on Jan 12.

What I have experienced these past 11 days has been a roller coaster to say the least! First, the bad:

First 2 days I was not so bad, felt pretty encouraged. Days 3-4 I could hardly move, I felt like I had gained all my weight back plus 100 lbs. Sleep was the worst, every time I lie down I felt like my muscles were being electrocuted. The restlessness and insomnia are the worst for me by far. I thought things were turning around days 5-6, I could move a little more but still felt extremely restless. I was able to force myself to move, clean the house and get a little bit of exercise. Then things took a nose dive again days 9-10. The "restless electrocution" moves from my arms, to my back, to my legs. All day with very little relief. I became extremely distraught and had a mild break down emotionally. I am taking clonidine, which definitely helps, but it makes me quite lethargic so it's a trade off. If I lie down too long I lose any momentum I've gained.

The good:

80% of the time I have avoided depression and anxiety. I have no motivation, but I feel fairly clear headed. I am surprised at how much strength and positive attitude I have been able to maintain. When things get bad, I FORCE myself to move. Taking a shower, cleaning the house, listening to music, it's not much but it helps my day go by and gives me spurts of endorphins throughout the day that keep me going. Last night, I went to the gym for the first time, did 30 min of cardio and swimming. I felt so much better for a few hours and actually got about 5-6 hours of sleep last night. Every other night was about 2-3 sporadic hours if I was lucky. It also helps to not be alone. I feel so much better when I have my husband with me or my Grandma to talk to. This is something I am struggling with though, because I have isolated myself in recent years and not many people know what I am going through. I kind of wish I had a larger support network.

Today, I'm not technically feeling better, but I am able to deal with it better. I have energy but the electrocution feeling is still all over my body. I am praying this will not last much longer, but I will anticipate the worst. I just keep thinking that if this horrible skin crawling feeling would go away I would be 100% fine. I would be curious to know how long it took some of you to shake this feeling. I know you all know what I'm talking about :)

Tomorrow I go back to work. I am kind of scared, but I am hoping that not being alone all day will help me keep my mind off of this feeling. I think being bored and alone is getting to me.

Thanks for listening to my rant. Any words of encouragement, prayers, and positive thoughts are welcome. I'll keep this tread updated on my progress. For those of you out there going through this, please stay strong with me. And get up and exercise if you can at all. I swear it helps. Don't lie there and fall into despair!


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 1:04 pm 
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Great job pushing through the Suboxone withdraws. I know it can be so hard. I think that going back to work might be looked at in a positive way. It will hopefully keep you busy and keep your mind occupied through it all. just know that you can always come to this site for positive support.

it might be helpful to go to a meeting while you are in withdraws, it seems to help when you can get visual support through your peers. And.. it just gives you the " you are not alone" in your struggles type feeling.

Keep posting here on the site each day, so you can always come back to it later if you are ever tempted.

I hope each day keeps getting less and less of the WDs. Good luck!


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 10:56 am 
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Thank you for your reply! I went to work yesterday and all in all I am glad I did. I even had a job interview for a new position, and I think I did fairly well. It all took my mind off the withdrawals and I think I may have even had a few moments that I actually felt good. Just a lingering foggy and icky feeling.

No restlessness during the day, but I could not get warm! I was wearing my coat with a space heater most of the day and I had goosebumps from top to bottom. Not sure if this was due to the -7 degree temperatures or me. Probably a combination of both.

Last night was rough though. I was so hopeful that I would get some sleep because I was so tired after work. The very second I tried to relax the extreme restlessness all came back. I ended up taking 2 clonidine and some melatonin and was able to fall asleep, by never more than 1-2 hrs at a time. I may have gotten 4 or s hours altogether. The funny thing is that the restlessness is not really there when I wake up, I'm just 100% wide awake.

Today I have no motivation and I'm starting to get the restlessness again in my arms. I know it will pass though. All my symptoms are up and down, which is better than being consistent. I work later this evening and I'm actually looking forward to it. I also have some family functions this weekend so I shouldn't be alone for much longer. I think I will try and find a meeting. I know I have everything going for me to be successful in this except the meetings and support. I will be damned if I don't throw everything I've got at this!

After tomorrow it will be 2 weeks!!!


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 11:51 am 
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Getting sleep in 1 to 2 hour blocks is pretty normal when coming off opiates. I know it sucks, but it's part of the process.

Keep hanging in there.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 1:39 pm 
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Just try to keep your head up thing will start getting better i am on my 3rd day so stay positive and know you have all of us if you need help you are thru the worst of it keep it up


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:59 am 
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Thank you for the support guys :)

I went to work on Friday and had a really good night. I was able to laugh with my co-workers and felt pretty productive and clear headed. My back was killing me by the end of the night though.

Saturday we had a birthday party for my Father in law, and I was really glad to be around family and get my mind off things.

I am happy to say that my sleep is steadily improving. The last 2 nights I only woke up once with the restless feeling, and last night I was able to fall back asleep relatively quickly. I'm getting up at 5:30 am but I have gotten 6-7 hrs both nights.

The weakness is definitely improving too. I am able to get up and move a little faster, but I am tiring out easily. The restlessness is still with me and this morning I have had some of the worst stomach problems I've had so far. I am going to try and hit the gym this afternoon and hope it helps me feel a little better.

I'm off work again today, bored and sad at the horrific weather we are having. I have never wanted to feel sunshine and take a walk so badly. I am trying to remain positive though. I keep thinking that once the nice weather comes again I will be feeling good as well. I am starting to realize it may take that long to fully recover from this. Every day seems to be an inch of improvement though.

15 days!


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 3:56 pm 
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Thought I'd update :)

I am at day 20 now! I am definitely progressing and things seem to be a teensy bit better everyday. The severe restlessness in my arms and legs subsided about 2 days ago and I am starting to be able to get 5-6 solid hours of sleep a night. I think most of the acute symptoms are letting up.

That said, I'm far from 100%. The lack of motivation I still feel is quite crippling. I am anxious and feel like I can't sit still, but it's ridiculously hard to force myself to get up and do anything. Once I do however, I seem fine. I feel a whole lot better when I am at work and around people. I am able to completely forget about feeling bad for awhile. It's funny because I keep catching myself feeling really good and as soon as I acknowledge I'm feeling better the ickiness comes crawling back. I'm also having violent fits of sneezing. Everyone at work thinks I'm pregnant because I am so sensitive to smells.

I'm also frustrated because I cannot concentrate or enjoy things I normally do. If I'm at home by myself I basically just feel like lying on the couch until I am forced to get up to go to work. I've been going to the gym, but only because my husband makes me. I really hope this dragging ass thing ends soon. I feel a ton better when I get up and get out of the house, but it's the getting up part that is indescribably hard.

Even with all my complaining, this is definitely doable. It's not even quite as bad as I was prepared for. I truly think I am progressing well for as long as I was on opiates. The snow is very slowly starting to melt and that makes me hopeful.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 7:28 pm 
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Hey Kristabelle,

Wow, 20 days! That's a huge accomplishment! I totally get the whole tired thing you are describing. For me, that is always one of the worst symptoms of opiate WD. Well, maybe not the worst, but it definitely ranks up at the top! I can remember going through that and feeling like it would take a miracle to get me up and going. You get off the couch, make it to the kitchen and have to sit down because you're too tired to keep going. Nevermind trying to cook or clean anything!

Even though I know you aren't feeling great yet, it is coming! You have made it almost a whole month. And I'm sure you are noticing that you are improving every day, even if it is just a little bit.

How are you doing other than the physical stuff? Any cravings or thoughts of using? Keep in mind that you need to be prepared for these thoughts to resurface. Have a plan in place to deal with them, and a person you can talk to at any time of the day just in case.

Good luck girl, I'm so happy for you!

Q

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:49 pm 
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:shock: TAKE 3

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2014 11:44 am 
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Sorry for the slow response. I told myself I was going to try and keep posting every few days, but my motivation to do anything is so low still.

I have actually been surprised by some of the thoughts that have been creeping in. Even being out of active addiction for so long, I have had some old feelings and cravings come and go. The main issue being the thoughts about how much better I felt on the Sub. I tend to have an overwhelming voice that starts screaming "NO!" every time I think of using or getting back on. I keep pushing through. I keep making plans to go to a meeting, but anything that I am not forced to do (ie work) I cannot get myself up and moving.

I'm at 30 days now. Not trying to scare anyone, but I am feeling quite discouraged at the moment. My symptoms have not really changed in the past week. I can sleep just fine, but I wake up with anxiety and extreme weakness every day. I have a general feeling of ickiness and dread that never leaves. Still some restlessness and clammy hands etc. I guess this is PAWS. I pray so hard this eases up soon. I have some days I can push through and some like today that I just want to scream and cry. I just want to be the normal happy person I was again. I am getting sick of pushing so hard to do anything. I was reading that these symptoms can last anywhere from 2 months to 2 years. My doctor confirmed that too. As long as I was on meds I am afraid I am in it for the long haul.

I apologize for the downer tone of this post. I will get through this. I have been through worse.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2014 12:37 pm 
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Hey Kristabelle,

Please don't apologize for stating your true feelings. Others reading along need to see how it is for each of us at different points in the process no matter if your struggling or not. I encourage you to continue posting exactly what your feeling because you are helping so many others by doing so, and in turn helping yourself too by getting those thoughts out in the open. A win all the way around!

The good news is that is does get better given more time. How much time varies with each of us. I had what would be considered one of the easiest times ever with the taper process, and for the first 2 or so months after I had taken the final dose. I did have several days and nights of very severe cravings, and some anger issues which is foreign to my personality and it truly frightened me. But it all did pass and I am now feeling better than I have ever felt in my life at a little over 5 months since my last dose of subs. I'm preggo and due at the end of March with my first child, so tired and anxious feelings are to be expected with that. But as far as symptoms from the bupe itself, there are none, and I am extremely happy to be where I am right now. Enjoying life without worrying about any kind of pill or other substance to get me moving.

I'm sure it will be the same for you if you can hang in there as best you can while it's rough going. If your not already, get as much exercise as you possibly can because it puts you into such a positive frame of mind to stay busy. When you have those days that your feeling pretty darn good, hang onto them and put those away in memory. Won't be long and everyday will be a good one. You have to think about it like that.

I know it's been 30 days since you stopped, but if you really consider it - it's only actually been 30 days. In the overall grand scheme of things that's really not very long at all. Sure it's a wonderful accomplishment, and you have every right to be proud of yourself for how far you've come, but our active addiction usually lasted much longer than that, so it takes some time for our mind and bodies to make the adjustment back to what normal should feel like.

Kristabelle wrote:
I will get through this. I have been through worse.
I know you can do it! Keep adding up the days and deal with any symptoms the best you can. Time will make the difference I promise you. Positive thoughts help so much in this. Best wishes to you!

Karen


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2014 1:02 pm 
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I was off Suboxone for about 9.5 months before my PAWS ended. Acute wd passes fairly quickly with fair improvements almost everyday. PAWS seems to pass much more slowly with improvements seeming to come very slowly. I know PAWS is supremely frustrating, but it does get better....it just does so slowly.

How is your diet? Do you eat fairly healthy? If not, you should consider a healthier diet. While on opiates, I could pretty much eat Tupperware and feel fine. Once off opiates, I realized my diet has a lot to do with how I feel.

Exercise is a great way to kick start your natural opiates. Your brain is 100% not used to producing its own opiates and giving it a kick in the butt (exercise) may be exactly what you need.

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