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I am reading these incredible responses from our Board friends, and I feel so hopeful. Just maybe, with you all by our side, we can 'do it!' No...make that, "We WILL do it!" :bouncing: Lynn and I know how lucky we are to have each other on this scary journey. And we hope that our updates over the next few weeks will encourage others to 'make the sub (or rehab) call.' (ChristianMom...consider us your 'triplet!' We suspect you are close on our heels to give the Sub a try. Cool!) :cool: And, by the way, it is criminal that a Rehab would say that 'Sub doctors are not available in Fl.' This new drug is available now in almost EVERY state! I'm sure the less scrupulous rehabs are concerned that they will be put 'out of business' by Sub. But the better facilities will no doubt incorporate the drug into their healing programs. And perhaps their clients, feeling 'normal' upon taking the Sub, will be in better emotional and physical shape to absorb the major mind-healing work that must begin after de-tox.

Lynn and I are currently mulling over our last days of Oxy nibbling...and, of course, like true addicts, how can one resist going out in a blaze of glory. Kinda like the 4th of July. We've been 'setting off' the 'little guys' for years - a pink here, a green there, a yellow everywhere. Now, with two days left till Sub, it feels like we're building up for the Grand Finale. That final explosion...the blast of artificial colors...the crescendo-ing oohs and aahs of the twins taking the last of all their pills...and then....the silence. When the only things left in the sky are the millions of twinkling stars...a reminder that the 'natural' beauty that life has to offer is still the most spectacular. And so, a special thanks to all of you who have, over these many months, gently nudged us to remember the beauty out there and assured us that it's all waiting for us!! You guys are true angels! :angel:

I have found my first post to the List! Almost one year ago. Have cut and pasted it below in case it helps explain our story to newcomers. (See below) TwinAlice :wave:

"DOUBLE TROUBLE"-TWIN Tales of the Unexpected :-( :-(
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Firstly, a huge "thanks" to all posters, here...for your honesty, your good - often-so-eloquent! - information, and, mostly, for your kind support of one another. There is so much intelligence, generosity, compassion to be found on this Board! Makes it a lot easier to 'share one's story.' And my (OUR) story may be a tad 'weirder'...or, let's just say, 'more different'...than some heard here, before. It is a tale of 'TWINS' - tho, thankfully, not as far gone as the poor twins of "Dead Ringers" - for those of you old enough to recall the novel/film! :-)

First...an introduction: we are 57 1/2 (that 'half' COUNTS at our age..so what if our 58th birthday is in January!) year-old identical twins. We are also: 'model citizens' (of course! lol);...no kids but we're deliciously dawg crazy (3 Shih Tzu furkids for me...hence, my 'Best Friend' board handle...I've worked with all 3 in Obedience )...and a lovingly-benevolent-dictator-Lhasa and Peke for my twin; she also has a VERY respectable, responsible job (for a public figure)...and I 'get by' with freelance writing, after a fun career in acting;...we are avid (tho never-in-shape!) skiers;...and....well...you get the picture - we 'seem normal!' My sister is recently separated from her husband of 20 years and dealing well with it. We live in same building, but in different apts.

Now for the "weird" part... This whole drug thing began with, (and its continuance is pretty much dependent upon), our cousin, who has been prescribed pain meds (legitimately, for REAL suffering!) for the past ten years. Over this period, she has been received Vicodin, Oxys, etal, and has been "very generous" with them (since my sister and I have occasional back pain). To make a long story short, what started out for us as taking these pills for our 'real' pain, has escalated to us "siphoning out" whatever we can (without being absurdly greedy) from her ongoing supply...which can be substantial. (By the way, we are fascinated that our cousin never seems to suffer withdrawal when she goes off opiates. She has quite an amazing constitution.) We rarely get our own scripts (once in a while, for back pain) and we've never gone online or accessed meds thru 'dealers.' But our cousin's supply has been just enough for both of us to have acquired a serious "habit.'

It was so gradual, that neither one of us realized how bad it had gotten. Now, we have admitted to ourselves - and to each other - that these drugs have changed our lifestyles quite dramatically. The need to feel "medically warm and fuzzy" has supplanted so many of the 'real' activities we once filled our lives with. We used to love wandering the city, enjoying its varied cultures, it's wonderful ethnic areas...and we'd rent cars and drive miles to see friends exhibit at out-of-town dog shows...and checked out any interesting new eateries... Let's just say, that before drugs, while we may not have "gotten high on life" each and every day, we never 'needed' those "highs" to simply "get ON" with life...(to function)! Now...it's mostly about hanging out alone or with each other...no natural energy...no goals. "Nibbling' an opiate has become the day's focus. It's just been so insidious. And, what finally drove the point home, is that we are finally facing withdrawal ('funny' how this Board gets REAL interesting when it's time to pay the piper). Our cousin is getting different medication now, so WE are confronting reality...SOON. The "physical" symptoms will, fer shure, be uncomfortable for us....but it is the 'emotional' pain that we know we will face. We will have to 'relearn' what it feels like to wake up and look forward to a "normal" drug-free day. In one sense, I am almost happy we will be forced into this. I used to love waking up and planning each day....I got SO excited over such simple pleasures. Now, I feel like a social 'hermit'....unable to separate my 'real' depressions and fears from those, drug-induced. My twin feels the same (tho she goes into an office everyday and I write at home...so she is 'forced' to socialize, while I just have to walk my dogs!). We have both dealt (fairly successfully) with clinical depression and OCD over the years (for us, Prozac was a blessing and still is), but this escalating addiction has been a real setback for us.

Things got worse for us some years ago when we cared for our mother, who, for about 8 years, suffered bad depression and dementia. We got her an apt in our building and, tho she had a daily caregiver, we spent much of our time with her, trying to make her final years bearable. "Pills" were a 'way out' for us at the end of an emotionally draining day....and even tho our mother has been gone a few years now, we are still left a bit 'stunned' by all those years of sadness. While the drugs remain "OUR secret," both my sister and I do continue to have loving, caring friends...and the irony (part of the "weirdness" of this!) is that many of them rely on US, like 'gurus,' for help in THEIR day-to-day troubles. They have no idea what is going on with us (guess my years of acting paid off - lol!) - and, of course, we are so HAPPY to help out our friends in any way we can (and relieved that apparently our brains have not been TOTALLY "fried!" ). I guess that's what just amazes me. I can 'talk down' and psychoanalyze almost anyone out of anything - but I sat back and watched 'myself' sink lower and lower into this abyss. But that seems to be typical of many posters here -- 'levelheaded' and down-to-earth in every 'other' aspect of our lives!

It's amazing tho, isn't it, how this 'drug thing' all happens... My first experience with opiates was 20 years ago...I was prescribed Percodans for a sprained ankle. I actually called the doctor and told him, "There is a problem with the medication you prescribed...I took it last night and felt like I was floating." At THAT time, I considered the 'floating feeling' a "problem!" Then, fifteen years ago, we had a dr. who gave us a small amount of Percodan once a year for our menstrual pain...and we both recall being 'delighted' with its warm little buzz. But we had no access to other drugs. Then....came our cousin and her constant supply. Who could imagine getting addicted so "effortlessly!" No "doctor shopping"...no ferreting out "dealers"...just a family member with a monthly bottle of opiates.

Well, this is getting awfully long...but so many of you have been so brave this week, so thought I'd take the plunge with our "twin story." Identical depressions, identical OCD....and now, identical addiction. Two DOWN....ONE to go! ... We hope, we hope, we hope.. :-) We wish you all lots of strength and the love and understanding of good people in your lives. Believe me, we know that we, as twins, are totally blessed to have each other to share all this. (If we can help anyone else somehow, please do not hesitate to direct a post our way. And, by the way, we are happy to "do" twin questions....no query considered 'too silly.' Promise! Lol! P.S. We will be home until late next week when we go on our annual ski holiday.)
The Twins :-) :-)
After lurking, barely posting, missing the "old gang," then only dropping in once in awhile these days, well...I can't begin to tell you two how glad I am for checking in tonight as I would not have wanted to miss this thread for the world! So much to say to you both, but where to even start...?

First, thank you for sharing something so personal as your very first thread. It gave me an insight into you two that I didn't have all the pieces of your puzzle of how you got to addiction level. I think you will find yourselves rereading it at times just to help you "know where you've been." I can see a difference in your ways of expression already. I remember also when a half of a pill was enough to suffice for a shopping spree, but as you know, for me it got to where 4 or more were needed just to get me ready to go out the door, then five or six to get the kicks I used to get from the shopping, and then eventually to where there was no fun in them anymore, and it drove me out of my mind and made me want to kill myself, and I made that first post here a mere 4-5 months ago. Life was hard to live for the sake of my loved ones then, but it is better now, and the thoughts of death seldom linger for long anymore. The main problem I deal with, and I wonder if you will find yourselves experiencing this also, is because I had purposelfully pushed away all my friends and pals so I could be alone with my real buds--the pills, and now that the pills are gone, I have severe bouts of loneliness as I try to rebuild my life and rekindle some old friendships. Ah, the payback...!

Next, how does someone even find the words to tell you how happy, excited, nervous, anxious, hopeful, sincere, understanding, and every emotion and expression of congratulations for making such a huge decision as you two have made and be able to tell you that...well, in proofing, I guess I found the words! Sincerely Lynn, Alice, I am so genuinely happy and excited both with and for you, too, really--my eyes well up at the thought of anticipation for the guilty pleasure I will recieve as a result of your new upcoming posts. I'm right there with you ladies just like you two have always, always been there for me.

If the sub works the same as the meth has for me, then I think you will be very pleasantly surprised at the immediacy of the relief you will feel. Yes, stabilizing takes awhile, but gone will be the days of counting, carpet combing, rationing, and I hate to say it, but say goodbye temporarily to rearranging closets, drawers, cabinets and cupboards! That thing we do to justify away the guilt of taking an extra pill or two by cleaning and reorganizing and tackling weird projects goes away for awhile, but when it comes back, watch out as it comes back with a real-life vengeance! Your homes will never be cleaner than in a few months...LOL! And have no fears, your beloved pups will not find you any less loving nor boring, either.

How wonderful to have each other's heart and hand to hold as you begin this adventure into a world you know, but have only taken a detour from. I have no doubt your strength of character and senses of humor will fill the time when dosed properly every 4 hours! You will get through this change and the sorrow of saying goodbye to the powder vicodin es white, buttercup norco yellow, or baby lortab blue of your best friends cloaks as you watch their backs disappear down the street and around the corner and out of the sight of your life. I truly understand that sense of loss, and I expect you will feel it quite strongly. Those pills don't let us down like real people, but then at some point they do when they don't work like they used to, and we are forced to make a decision and ultimately a change, and that's where the irony is because they are so very bad for us so we do something good to replace them! I have no doubts that you will once again find the joys of the sea while looking only at a raindrop, you know? Those little things you speak of are and have always been there, waiting to be noticed again by you both, and I can assure you that you will feel that feeling again. There are many Kodak moments ahead, and I want to be there to hear you describe each one!

As I wait for your next post and the start of this new way of life for you, I will offer you these words on the playground of life...

One hour devoted to the pursuit of beauty and love is worth a full century of glory given by the frightened weak to the strong. From that hour comes man's truth; and during that century truth sleeps between the restless arms of disturbing dreams. In that hour the soul sees for herself the natural law, and for that century she imprisons herself behind the law of man; and she is shackled with irons of oppression. It is that hour when the heart is purified by flaming sorrow, and illuminated by the torch of love. And in the century, desires for truth are buried in the bosom of the earth. That hour is the root which must flourish. That hour is the hour of contemplation, the hour of meditation, the hour of prayer, and the hour of a new era of good. This is life. Portrayed on the stage for ages; recorded earthily for centuries; lived in strangeness for years; sung as a hymn for days; exalted for but an hour, but the hour is treasured by Eternity as a jewel.

Lynn and Alice, I wish you many new hours...

All my love,
Dallas Alice





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