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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:50 am 
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This thread is so inspiring for those of us trying to get to the other side. It's interesting to me that Ladder and substation used radically different approaches and both say it's doable. Ladder, it sounds like your jump was smooth as silk (and don't believe for a minute something is coming, because it's not). Substation I think went through more pain, but to be feeling good at day 9? That is really better than I would expect. Ladder, you said you went through a rough spot in your taper. I'm wondering what dosage that was at and how long it lasted. If you could tell us more about that I would be grateful.
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Lilly


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2011 5:53 pm 
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Lillyval wrote:
This thread is so inspiring for those of us trying to get to the other side. It's interesting to me that Ladder and substation used radically different approaches and both say it's doable. Ladder, it sounds like your jump was smooth as silk (and don't believe for a minute something is coming, because it's not). Substation I think went through more pain, but to be feeling good at day 9? That is really better than I would expect. Ladder, you said you went through a rough spot in your taper. I'm wondering what dosage that was at and how long it lasted. If you could tell us more about that I would be grateful.
Thanks,
Lilly


This jump has been very smooth! Actually, the whole thing has been pretty smooth since I got past that huge hump, which was when I tried to drop from 1.25 to 1 mg. I alternated between 1.25 and 1 for a week or so, which I thought was going slowly enough. I could feel it, but I wanted to keep pushing to stay on this schedule I had in my head. So, I went down to 1 mg and stayed there a loooonnnggg time. I was not a happy camper at all and thought the whole thing was never going to get better. Specifically, I had leg pain and RLS, cold sweats/hot flashes, freezing hands and feet, and I would wake up in the morning with a big jolt of anxiety. In all, it took me 71 days at 1 mg to get over the symptoms, but I resigned myself to waiting until I felt alright, since I could sense that pushing it harder would be a very bad thing. If I did this again, I would have stayed at 1.25 or alternated between that and 1 mg for much longer. This was a hard time, but it's also the time when I think I made the most progress, because when I dropped after that, I dropped to .75 and felt very little.

I wish I was one of those people who could taper in 30 days. I'm just not. :D There is a point at which you have to accept that your body is digging its heels in and you have to listen.

The upside to this is that I'm already starting to forget how many days off Sub I have. It feels like ancient history.

laddertipper

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2011 6:20 pm 
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I just wanted to say:

YAY! You did it!

I feel so freaking happy every time I read someone's successful taper story. I'm happy for you Ladder and I hope life just keeps getting better and better for you.

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 Post subject: Makes Sense
PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2011 11:24 pm 
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Thanks LT for the tip. I too hit a wall going from 1.50 to 1mg. Ended up going back to 2mgs to stabilize. Now I'm back at 1.5 and will wait another week (being 2 weeks) before I drop to 1.25. Per your experience I may stay there for awhile before I try to drop to 1mg. Like you I will take it slow.

It is so good to hear you're on the other side now. Wasn't all that long ago you were talking about the w/d's you were having with the taper. Now you're there.

Congrats!

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 25, 2011 12:52 am 
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Miss Ladd!
I just want to high five you right now! your self discipline to taper has me in awe. I'm so happy for you!! *MMMMUAH*


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 Post subject: Two weeks off!
PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 11:08 am 
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It's been over two full weeks off Sub! Yippie!! Still feeling really good and much better than I thought. I have to think hard to come up with symptoms, lol. I mean, I had the worst RLS/pain in my legs for months after dropping to 1 mg and I have none of this at all!! The toughest thing for me is sleeping a good, long time. I just can't do it. I sleep about six hours. I stopped the Clonidine a while ago and recently had to cut back my Melatonin dose and then quit taking it because it suddenly started giving me a headache the next day. Weird. My body's so dang sensitive.

I recommend to anyone stopping Sub to watch your diet. It seems like bad feels makes me really feel horrible. That's the biggest thing I've noticed. Also, I've gotten sick a couple times. I can certainly sense that my body is still trying to come all the way back from being on Sub for nearly six years, but it's not so hard that it's psyching me out. I have some degree of PAWS, mostly if I eat like crap. I started taking vitamins regularly and eating tons of fruit and I feel waaayyy better. I've upped my running to 3 mi......

What else? I gotta say that, as much as I tried to not concentrate of my taper, it's hard to not do that at least a little. So, once that was over, I felt like there was an empty spot where there used to be this goal. And when it was easier than I ever dreamed, that kinda made that empty spot emptier. Does that make sense? Do, I am trying to fill that in. I started studying accounting again. I have my degree but graduated nearly 9 years ago and have not used it. Add to that the fact that I was drunk in many of my classes (not proud of this, but it's true!) and I kinda feel like I'm starting over. I'd love to sit for the CPA in a year. We'll see. I'm working on it.

laddertipper

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 4:07 pm 
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So crazy cool to see how well you are doing!! I can't wait till I'm at 2 weeks!! If you can do this, you certainly can do anything!


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 6:08 pm 
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WOW ladder….I honestly didn’t know you were on subs for six years! Holy cow you must feel AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I mean I was on for 20 months and feel free, I can’t imagine the feeling after six years! Unbelievable, you’re a rock star!

Hey good luck on the CPA, you can do it. I actually come from a family of almost all CPA’s and I know that test is HARD. But knowing you can kick subs after 6 years you can do anything, for reals :wink:


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 6:10 pm 
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WOW ladder….I honestly didn’t know you were on subs for six years! Holy cow you must feel AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I mean I was on for 20 months and feel free, I can’t imagine the feeling after six years! Unbelievable, you’re a rock star!

Hey good luck on the CPA, you can do it. I actually come from a family of almost all CPA’s and I know that test is HARD. But knowing you can kick subs after 6 years you can do anything, for reals :wink:


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 11:30 am 
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substation wrote:
WOW ladder….I honestly didn’t know you were on subs for six years! Holy cow you must feel AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I mean I was on for 20 months and feel free, I can’t imagine the feeling after six years! Unbelievable, you’re a rock star!

Hey good luck on the CPA, you can do it. I actually come from a family of almost all CPA’s and I know that test is HARD. But knowing you can kick subs after 6 years you can do anything, for reals :wink:


Seriously, substation....I forget that I was on Sub for so dang long and this is absolutely a huge victory!! Dude, I just did not think I could ever do this. It was so scary and overwhelming to me. So much of that was lack of understanding on my part and lack of understanding and guidance on my doctors' parts. I mean, geez, when you are informed that you should 'feel nothing' if you jump at 2 mg, you are being set up to fail IMO! I'm so grateful to have found this site, where there aren't just scary stories, but explanations and solutions!!

I have to report that I have PAWS. I didn't really believe in PAWS, lol. I was totally focused on the w/d part and didn't give much thought to it, especially since it made no sense to me anyway and I tapered really low, so I was pretty sure I'd avoid it. I guess until you go through it, you just don't truly get it. Live and learn. This is a very weird feeling. Some of it feels like the end of tapering did.

A couple mornings, I woke up with that really horrid heavy feeling and immediately thought (in a half-awake way) "I am looking forward to not feeling this way after I dose today." Then it hit me that there would be no dose. :o This still feels very doable to me, but it's still kinda hitting me. It feels like moving and thinking through water. Like, slow body and slow brain. As you guys know, I was a terrible drunk, and there were times I'd drink heavily all weekend and stop on Monday. So, Monday, I'd be super hungover. Tuesday, I'd be better but dragging and feeling very dried out and a bit unwell. This feels like Tuesday. I feel dehydrated all the time, which is weird, because I'm chugging water. Kinda wondering if anyone else has felt that way. My nose feels dry, weird smells, etc.

I'm battling this thing. I really am, and I will beat it. I also think some if it is just a matter of waiting it out. At the one month mark, I bet it will be better than it is now. I'm only 16 days out. I think resuming a normal sleep cycle will be huge, because I cannot wake up in the mornings or fall asleep at night, and I have to maintain a normal schedule, so I can't just sleep here and there when my body wants to.

This is still all worth it. I love not thinking about cutting my Sub, the tweezers, the mirror, dang it cause I dropped it, where is it?, etc. It's a huge freedom that I feel was hard earned and I'm really proud of it.

Oh, and my surgery is coming up on the 18th. The low iron could be causing a good portion of this, so I'm really excited at the idea that I may feel way better afterward. :D

laddertipper

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 12:02 pm 
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Hi Ladder, I was reading your post and thinking "oh no she has paws, I really thought you would mostly avoid it" then you reminded me of your anemia. As someone who has battled anemia, yes it makes you feel just like you describe. The exhaustion is overwelming. It feels like you are lifting 100lbs just to move your arm. It also gives you a weird kind of feeling I can't even describe and you feel over all shitty. I am not saying that it is all anemia but I am willing to bet that once you get your surgery and your iron levels improve you are going to feel a whole lot better. Are you taking iron? You should because even after your surgery your body will need the extra iron to get your levels back up and starting it now will help get them up faster. If you are not yet, make sure you get the slow release iron. It is a bit more expensive but releases the iron slowly which helps your body to absorb it better and helps prevent constipation. When you take just a plain old iron supplement your body only absorbs a tiny bit. Also since you are anemic it takes more to build your iron back up so you should take one in the am and one at night. Get those iron levels back up and I think you will notice a drastic improvement, take care!


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 Post subject: Had my surgery
PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:25 pm 
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Hi guys, I wanted to update about having my surgery. So, I had it on Tues. and the plan was for me to go home that evening. It did not exactly go that way. I ended up staying over and was in the worst pain in my right side up in my ribs and in my shoulder/neck. They sent me home anyway after many shots of Demerol. I ended up back in the ER about an hour or two later. This was unbelievable pain. Like, 10+. I was totally hysterical and crying/screaming at the poor nurses because it was absolutely unbearable and the fact that shots of Diluadid could not even control it make me feel panic.

That was Wednesday, and I got out of the hospital late this morning (Friday). What a ride. I don't think this had anything at all to do with Suboxone. My surgery was a little complicated because my uterus was attached to my bladder, so that took a while to separate. I had some internal bleeding afterward that contributed to that pain, plus the gas they pump in there during laprascopic surgery, plus some issue where your downstairs shuts off after surgery. Anyway, I'm home now; the pain is more controlled but I'm still around a 5-6. I'm taking painkillers. They gave me a boatload of stuff in the hospital and now it's Percocet. Still in quite a lot of pain and expect to be on the painkillers a while more.

laddertipper

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 2:26 am 
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I am sorry Ladder! I had exrcutiating pain after my hysterectomy but I had hoped my experience was not the norm. The 1st time I posted about it I realized it sounded negative and figured that I just had a worse time than most so I decided to not say that it freakin hurt because I didn't want to scare you for no reason. I also understand about not getting proper pain control, at the time I was on around 250mg of oxy a day and they gave me a 30mg oxycontin 2x per day, and lortab every 4 hours. I had told them what I was scripted and that is all they gave me. I was crying and screaming at nurses too. They wanted to keep me a second night because of my pain but I told them I could treat my pain better at home.

I am bummed that you had such a hard time too. The good news is that horrible air gets better after a few days. I have had numerous surgeries and 2 of them were laprascopies, the laps hurt worse than any of my regular surgeries. I would much rather be cut open than feeling the pain that air causes.

I hope you heal up fast and start feeling better. It's all worth it in the end.


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 Post subject: Re: Had my surgery
PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 2:45 am 
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laddertipper wrote:
Hi guys, I wanted to update about having my surgery. So, I had it on Tues. and the plan was for me to go home that evening. It did not exactly go that way. I ended up staying over and was in the worst pain in my right side up in my ribs and in my shoulder/neck. They sent me home anyway after many shots of Demerol. I ended up back in the ER about an hour or two later. This was unbelievable pain. Like, 10+. I was totally hysterical and crying/screaming at the poor nurses because it was absolutely unbearable and the fact that shots of Diluadid could not even control it make me feel panic.

laddertipper


It sucks you had to experience that pain. It sounds really rough! It's great you got through it though.

So many doctors just don't fully understand that people who have recently come off opiates, including Suboxone, have a much higher tolerance to opiates than the opiate-naive patients they usually deal with. We are in such a minority, us opiate dependent, that most doctors simply don't have the experience in dealing with us.

I remember in the months after I would detox off any opiates - heroin, Suboxone, methadone - my pain threshold was much lower. I was overall just more sensitive to physical pain. IMO this could even be considered a symptom of PAWS, it takes a while for our 'natural painkillers' to come out of hiding after all.

My brother in law is an anaesthetist, and we talk sometimes about how my addiction has affected me, and my treatment. He said the fact he's familiar with my story has made him more aware with how to deal with us 'complex cases'. He said that people who are dependent on opiates often need massive doses of painkillers to relieve their pain, enough to potentially be fatal the opiate naive. So when a doc isn't familiar with treating us types, they are often really cautious about giving us the dose we need.

Don't do your head in about PAWS. In support groups and counselling, their name for PAWS is 'early recovery'. I think it's a much more life affirming way of viewing it personally. Viewing early recovery as a medical problem can too easily result in looking to medicine for a solution. And wasn't that our problem in the first place?

I think you're doing awesome laddertipper. Wow who woulda thought.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:24 pm 
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Ladder, I'm so, so sorry you are going through this. I know you are a tough cookie and you're going to be OK, but that doesn't help in the short run when you are in pain. In addition to the meds try whatever non-medication techniques that you can: music, conversation, having someone read to you, have your husband (or even your kids) massage your hands/feet. Watch funny shows/movies. Do whatever it takes, let people take care of you. I really hope by the time you read this you are much improved. But continue to take it easy. That's a big surgery, don't do too much too soon.
I'm sending you healing thoughts and prayers.
Feel better,
Lilly


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 3:01 pm 
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Thanks so much for the replies. Breezy, it really sounds like we had identical experiences. This was absolutely a terrible experience. It was insanely painful. I'm not sure it had anything to do with the Sub, although I guess I could be wrong. In the future, there's noooo waaaayy I will have another lap surgery. Hell to the NO! :D After five days, that gas in my ribs is finally dissolving and letting up. I can actually feel the incision now! It still hurts to breath deeply and sneezing is like being stabbed in my shoulder/ribs, but it's way better than before. And I bought this huge thing of Motrin from Costco because I thought that would get me through, lol.

So, here's my question. I'm still on pain meds and expect to be for a few more days if I follow this healing trajectory. I got it mixed up when I said I'm on Perc. I'm now on Hydrocodone. The Perc made me get sick. In the end, I think whatever they give you after the anesthesia is probably what ends up making you sick. I'm also taking Phenergan to ward off any nausea. In the hospital, I was on a boatload of narcotics: Fentanyl, Dilaudid, Demerol, Toradahl, and oral meds. I don't even know what else. I didn't always ask, but I know it was a LOT of IV meds. The last day in the hospital, my IV clogged and I didn't want another one, so they switched to 2 Hydrocodone every 4 hours. So, yesterday, I took 6 Hydrocodone 5 mg/325. Today, I will probably take 6 again. It's nearly been five days on pain meds. I'm thinking I should just taper off them as my pain level drops. Is this right? What happens if I take them for the better part of two weeks? Will I be addicted? Should I take 5, then 4, then 3, 2, 1? Should I even worry about this?

Thanks everybody!!

laddertipper

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 4:14 pm 
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I don't know the answer to your question but wanted to say I am with you sister, lap surgeries suck! If I ever have a Dr suggest one again I am gonna tell them I prefer to be opened up, that gas hurts sooooo bad! I thought I was being a baby or something because they kept saying people have less pain with laps, well not me! I am glad you are starting to feel better it will be over soon!


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 7:13 pm 
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Breezy_Ann wrote:
I don't know the answer to your question but wanted to say I am with you sister, lap surgeries suck! If I ever have a Dr suggest one again I am gonna tell them I prefer to be opened up, that gas hurts sooooo bad! I thought I was being a baby or something because they kept saying people have less pain with laps, well not me! I am glad you are starting to feel better it will be over soon!


You were not being a baby! I've had pain and surgeries before and nothing comes close to this type of stabbing pain.

Do you have a smallish abdomen? I don't know if it matters, but a couple curses said that people with larger abdomens do much better with lap surgery. My abdomen is (normally) pretty small, so there's not a whole lot of room for all the gas to go. I will be splayed open before I ever have another lap surgery. I know they do colonoscopies using gas and I'm already dreading the idea of having to get one in 20+ years.

Breezy, not sure if you mentioned this, but how long were you on pain meds after your lap surgery? Wait, you were already on pain meds, so I guess that's tough to answer, right?

laddertipper

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 9:51 pm 
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Hey LT,

I remember taking Vicodins for a full week and had no problems stopping. After two? That I'm not sure but I doubt if it would be very bad. Being that you were on Sub I wonder if that would make a difference?

How's the pain now?

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 12:04 pm 
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rule62 wrote:
Hey LT,

I remember taking Vicodins for a full week and had no problems stopping. After two? That I'm not sure but I doubt if it would be very bad. Being that you were on Sub I wonder if that would make a difference?

How's the pain now?


The pain is getting better! Everyday is a little bit better. I got up this morning and waited a while and then took a painkiller. :D I can handle feeling icky for a while and then it starts to make me :x I'm just going to keep going like I'm going until I'm off of them. It helped to start taking 1 at a time instead of 2. Now I'm spacing them. I think this will not be tough, because I go for 12 hours at night w/o any pain pill (thank you, Ambien) and I don't wake up feeling any sort of w/d. I have no idea if having been on Sub could affect this. I'm not sure how I would be able to tell though.

laddertipper

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