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Addiction & Recovery Message Board

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I have been reading forums for a while now regarding others addicted (for whatever reason) to narcotic PRESCRIPTIONS. Just felt like sharing my story, hoping to bring relief to some. Roughly 5 years ago, (I'm in my early 30's). I started feeling much lower and mid back pain. A neighbor gave me the hydrocodone 10/325's to take. After trying the standard otc med's I thought would help nothing worked but the hydro's. I continued to take them as they were just being given to me. Initially yes, it was for pain relief, then.... I know I became mentally & physcially addicted to them. I ended up doing things as I thought I should, went to my family doc, told him my situation & about my back pain. He wrote me my scripts for quite some time but he also tried to get me a specialist, I liked him a lot but it he never tried to taper me down or f/u with me on the specialist visits. He was giving me 60 tabs every 12-15 days for a long time. A year later he told me to come in for blood work (they have to do that for their files). We all know prolonging finding a permanent cure is easier because it seems the pills are all we need. The Norco 10/325's gave me so much energy and things seemed easier to deal with. For the longest time it felt I couldn't do anything w/o them. The amt. he was giving me didn't seem to be enough so I found 2 other doctors for scripts...I didn't consider the legalities (or as any addict, ignored them). None of these doctors EVER told me the risk of addiction or the pain of the withdrawals... nothing.. but I don't only blame them. Yes, I had been in 2 serious car accidents & have severe muscle spasms, but nothing was ever determined through MRI's/X-rays that constituted the level of pain meds they kept me on. I didn't question that...I just wanted the pills. I know I kept taking them mainly for that euphoric feeling. I felt embarrassed going to the doctors office requesting refills and picking them up from my pharmacy. Perhaps my true colors were showing. I didn't want anyone to think I was an addict to them....although at one point I felt that my pain was justified....I know there are others that are a lot worse off than I am that truly need them. I do firmly believe nobody should be on narcotics for too long though. In summary...I was running out of ways to obtain doctors were helpful at the time but they stopped my prescriptions for the reasons most doctors do. No, they didn't taper me off and I do feel they were wrong in that aspect. As soon as I found out I couldn't get anymore from my last doctors, I was stuck.....I had NONE. I went w/o hydro for I believe it was 22 days. I was MISERABLE! I thought I was going to die. I have a child to raise on my own, no family or friends to help, (I'm always working or living for my child) ...I couldn't let anyone at my job know ...I have a wonderful job. Having to quit cold turkey after taking up to 14-18 10/325's per day was awful. I experienced all the standard symptoms: bathroom issues, severe flu symtoms, no energy, mood changes left and right and restless nights that seemed to go on forever & my body temperature was going crazy. I firmly believe a percentage of addiction is mental but I'm no doctor. Majoring in Pschology, doing research on placebo's, I've always believed in mind over matter .. When I first quit cold turkey, I only took 1 day off work and then the next day, I only made it half a day at the office. The next couple of weeks at work, I was useless...but I forced myself because I didn't want anyone to suspect anything, I was late everyday but went. Didn't clean for 3 weeks (which is not like me...had to keep up w/all household chores and be a was tough. I moped around & felt like if I didn't get more pills, my life would fall apart. I went to a different doctor and started all over...6 months ago.. I've been on Hydro 10/325 for a total of 5 1/2 years with only that one 22 day break in between with nothing, I always had pills except during that time. It took some convincing with this new doc...but he gave me the script. I filled it and kept making excuses to continue to get them. He did ask I go to a specialist, get some MRI's & I did to continue getting the refills from him. He started me out on 4-6 10/325's per day (but we all know we take more most days)..I kept making up stories to get my refills early, made up stories to get more pills... etc.. he kept giving me the 10's for about 5 months.... last month @ this time he cut me down to the 7.5/325's. Those seemed to give me relief but he gave me lower quantities so it got harder and harder to continue to have a supply on hand. I talked to him, I asked him to please gradually cut me down. I did some research and knew I should finally ask him to do this. He did it too quickly. He suddenly took a quantity of #40 at 7.5's/325's at 1 every 8 hours to a quantity of 20 tablets at 1 every 12 hours......then, they wouldn't refill it for took me 3 calls to the doctors office to explain that things were moving too quickly. They finally called in a refill but guess what, this was only 10 tablets at 1 per day. This, to me AND my pharmacist was too much too quick. She didn't even agree with it and that's all pharmacists do is medication, I trusted her more than the doc but there's not much you can do when your doctor always thinks he knows best. I had 10 tablets left (counting today, 8 days ago) and this is what I did. I took 4 last Friday, I took 3 on Saturday, I wanted to take the last 3 on Sunday but I didn't... I took 2. I felt like something was missing but I think I still had enough of the narcotic in my system for those to suffice. Well, come Monday morning...I only had one left (this was 5 days ago), I took that last one around 7:30 Monday morning before I went to the office. By that afternoon and all that night I kept thinking of ways to possibly get more. What prevented me from doing that was the embarrassment and hassle and money spent going through the process of being addicted to the pill. I decided, that's more. It's Friday evening and I haven't had a hydrocodone since Monday morning early. Miraculously enough, yes...I had a few stomach issues the first two days.... still am sneezing a bit, not many body aches at all.....I think I expected to go through the miserable time I did the first time I quit but that isn't the case this time. I've gotten up at 6:00 every day this week, got my child through his last week of school, worked full days (and productively) :-), am doing fine and keeping up dinners for my child and house work..... and NO, I'm not superwoman...I still feel weird, like something's I still have a craving, I still think about the pills, but... I have slept very well even knowing I don't have one to take when I wake up which is what used to keep me going :-( .... but this is all I've done thus far: I've tried to eat a **** load of fruit, I'm taking a good multivitamin daily.... and I know this sounds weird but I invested $50.00 into 2 of my favorite CD's. Sarah Brightman sings a great song "Winter in July" (totally inspirational for me) and Sarah McLauglin's "Fear" is another song I love. I blast these in my car every morning after I get my sonic tea and they give me so much inspiration. I keep thinking about tomorrow instead of today and I just keep telling myself that every single day is going to get better and better. It's not always easy...this afternoon I had a quick 20 minute spell at work where I had to hop on a forum and read about others with the same problem to get through the day. I was reading some horrific, sad stories...people getting arrested for Rx forgery.... losing their families...etc.... in fact, yesterday at the store I saw 2 police officers attending what appeared to be a very serious issue at a very upscale pharmacy here in my town..... that to me, was a sign from G-d. I know I've written so much but it was important to me to let everyone I've been reading about all week know that when I think about how long I've been on these, why, how many I was taking, what I did to have access to them... and to here the truth about the few days it's been since I stopped taking them w/o the taper....(which, if you can is probably the best way to do it).....unfortunatley, I ran out of pills entirely but figured, now's the time to stop, but also..I woke up and realized that I can either stay on them forever which is difficult when you have to go through so much in some states to obtain them, or just stop now as I've been forced to. I keep thinking of all the other things I will be able to do when I'm completely healed from this that will take the place of numerous doctor and pharmacy visits and extensive medication costs...because when your insurance co. will only pay for a narcotic when prescribed from one doctor and not the exact same narcotic even with a prescription from another doctor.... you have to act like you don't even have insurance and pay for them out of pocket. These are the things that keep me going. I guess I just got lucky with the withdrawal symtoms not being as bad the second time (please remember they will exist still)..... but also please remember that I have gone through the agony of a 22 day cold turkey withdrawal and I really understand what you are all going through. Mind over matter, no matter how bad the physical symtoms suck..... keep positive. Just PLEASE KNOW that time takes care of EVERYTHING, I firmly believe that. I know that since I've had the addiction for 5 years, a good attitude doesn't free you from the classified "addict"....but knowing I'm on the road to calling myself a recovered Narcotics addict holds a great sense of proudness for me and I know that it's better for me and my son in the long run. all, anything is possible if you really want it to be. Good luck and God Bless.

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