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Tramadol & Ultram Recovery Room Part 42

Jan 30, 2011 - 220 comments
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Recovery



Good Morning Tramadol Warriors!

We're all very happy that you have chosen to be here with us!

Please make yourself comfy, kick off your shoes and snuggle down. It's going to be a bumpy ride, but the end result is so worth it!


Love and Healing,
Emily

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by DamTram, Jan 30, 2011
So much for that!  Back on the 18.75 mg Effexor.  Grumble.  Day 13 Tramadol Free!

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by Ducky444, Jan 30, 2011
Yay you! And all the rest of you Tramtroopers

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by heal303, Jan 30, 2011
Hi again, Thanks so much for the welcomes.:) I am a bit confused about how to do my Lyme and co-infection treatment  and do the Tram withdrawel. Killing lyme is hell in itself,as it causes a herx's (die off) big time,with extreme pain,exhaustion and much more. And like Tram,many docs don't believe in chronic lyme and that a few abx will get rid of it. It took me 23 yrs to find out I was dealing with lyme,other infections heavy metals,etc. I am doing all alternatives like herbs,rife,supps,kpu,sauna,coffee enemas,reflexology,reike,organic diet earthing and more. My doc works out of the box and I have had lots of faith in him. He is so anti drugs and I think he really believed Tram was no prob. He knew I had a prob with Valium yrs ago and said Tram should be no problem. As we know that is wrong. I think I am a bit in shock.  I am reading all the past posts. Nora will try and find your post. I need to look back at my records but think I have been on Tram 5-6 yrs? Taking 2 ,50mg 3 X a day. I started a while after lyme and co treatment as the pain etc was and is intense with treatment. I cut one pill out and am going to ramp down very slow. Its hard to know now what is causing symptoms the tram or lyme,Babesia or Bartonella.  I do want to let you know that Lyme is epidemic and many docs r clueless. I am just rambling and hope this makes sense. Glad I stumbled into this support group. Healing Blessings to all of you.

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by Ducky444, Jan 30, 2011
Heal303,I'm on a low dose antibiotic for the micro plasma which also causes herx die off symptoms. Check out the road back foundation for info on their protocol?

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by heal303, Jan 30, 2011
Thanks Ducky, The site looks good.  I tested neg for micoplasma. Grateful for that as I have enough bugs on my plate.:) Are you doing the site program. I am on most of the supps they suggest. My Md is all into supps,herbs etc. He very seldom uses drugs even abx. Hope ur doing better with the Myco.  What a journey.

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by NoraTorious, Jan 30, 2011
Heal303-glad you are here. Sorry that you are going through so much. It sounds like you have had your share of poisonous things going through your body, it is good to get of one of them. There were a couple of hours today on which I felt 'normal' and forgot I was in the midst of detoxing from this garbage. This is my 25th day off and I can feel myself turning a corner. I slept most of the night-I woke up a couple of times but was able to get back asleep. I am waking up around 6 am, which was pretty normal for me in my pre-Tramadol days.

It is real overcast today, which means my sinuses are acting up. I took some benadryl which is making me feel sorta fuzzy headed and lazy. In some ways that Is a good sign as it means my body is responding to it. Just a few days ago I felt like nothing would take hold.


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by Ducky444, Jan 30, 2011
I'm trying some (cannot spell it) 5, htp, l-theosine, b's, otc to sleep at night. Biggest issue now is the big D, sleep and anxiety. But I didn't feel real good on the drug the last years. I used it all day at work and then crashed after work and every weekend, really life had stopped for me some time ago but I couldn't get off the treadmill. The micro plasma is a theory In my case. Docs never would test for it. I found on dr who let me go on low dose-b/c he thinks it won't do any harm. They use the protocol for other autoimmune disorders.

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by DamTram, Jan 30, 2011
Yayyyy Nora!!  May you be an inspiration to all who find themselves in a rut...that it always gets better!  So glad to hear you feeling better!

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by Thistime4real, Jan 30, 2011
Hey guys. Heal, I am happy that u have found some kindred spirits here.  I really hope that we can all be as much of a help as we can.  dam I am so happy ur trying to reduce the effexor too, that is tough taking two wd. I will def be looking to u for strength !  So its day 6 and things for me physically have been amazing.  Without being vulgar the sexual libido that came back from not really any on the poison is a lil scary. I feel like a 16 yr old boy. But the real issue for now is the depression. Granted I have some outside stressors the tram is not helping. I though I would be wd in a safe environment and since day 2 my wife has been in the hospital so instead of trying to get better I had to take the stearn of the family ship over with my daughter girls couts and EVerything else, at first fine but i started missing my wife dealing with the feeling this pill gives u and trying to be normal to do the regular things to keep everything flowing.  So she has been gone the majority of this wd and as the cloud opened i find things about myself I don't like, things i really need to change.  So for the last two days i feel like i can cry at any moment and I'm generally unhappy with my behavior of late.  I am going to get some professional help with making some legitimate changes, but good news is i have not looked to the pills since this had happened so i am 6 days free and growing. My mindset. Well right now i wish i could go back and change some things and I'm just hoping that I will make good decisions I'm just a lil sad. Let me thank u again tramadol for ruining my life, thank u for making me hide my feelings behind the poison. I am over u and I will get back to a good me

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by Thistime4real, Jan 30, 2011
Hope everyone makes it over!

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by DamTram, Jan 30, 2011
ThisTime -- The fact that you're leading your family THROUGH YOUR WITHDRAWAL has been giving ME strength!  Your positive attitude has been infectious, and I can't imagine how invaluable it's been for your entire family.  This drug ruined my career to the point that my life has literally stopped...as I'm on paid leave.  I have nothing better to do BUT sit and have brain zaps!  But how could I possibly feel sorry for myself when your positivity and strength in turmoil are oozing 2,000 miles from Cali to the Midwest??  I couldn't!  Thank you for your everything you've said and shared.  Thinking of you, over here.

The brain zaps disappeared about 2 hours after taking the ~19mg of Effexor, and I was able to go grocery shopping and clean up around the house.  I fiiiiinally started to tear up in the car when "I'll Be Missing You", Puff Daddy's ode to Biggie, came on the radio.  Then, I came home and watched a particularly depressing episode of Intervention (pills, pills, pills, wouldn't you know it!), and FINALLY CRIED!  It DID feel good!  Oh, normal emotions are so nice!  How I've missed them so!

Those of you in need of some laughs...I totally recommend hyperboleandahalf *******, if you haven't already seen it.  I was sitting in my bed, crying with laughter, with my kitties staring at me...wondering if their mama had finally lost it.  Check it out.  

Good night, warriors!  Wishing you a strong sleep and wake-up!

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by Thistime4real, Jan 30, 2011
Thank u dam for the encouragement and I'll tell ya the only way i do it is by refreshing this page every minute to read everyone elses strength.  And as for the funny things, it's so weird u know since you cannot sleep I stayed up and watched Jimmy fallen 2x at 3 am and was laughing so hard i was wee zing and crying. I even at one point looked around wishing other people were seeing this lol anyways dam, thank you. Ducky and Nora and Emily and everyone else Ty. Keep up the breakthroughs everyone.

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by Thistime4real, Jan 30, 2011
Ps. Those brain zaps are nasty. I tended to get them at night more, I feel what ur going through dam so keep ur head up, lol kinda funny to say that cause ur already doing so well, just keep it up.  

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by DamTram, Jan 30, 2011
It's all relative, ThisTime...I'm so sorry for what you're going through, but I'm so grateful that you're here and that we can be in this together...SAFETY IN NUMBERS, right?  I mean...even the Green Berets don't go out on their own...right?  

No brain zaps right now, but I go down to ~9mg tomorrow...so we'll see!  I would really love to NOT refill the Effexor script, but I would also love to not sustain permanent brain damage (some people still get the zaps 2 year out!!).  

If you find you can't sleep, then DEFINITELY check out hyperboleandahalf.  I know I will be!  Fingers crossed that you get some sleep tonight.  Get at that Melatonin, Boy!

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by Thistime4real, Jan 30, 2011
Lol I been puttin them funny tastin hylands under my tongue lol idunno that made me laugh..... I have a mix of the GABA and melatonin and theanine called achieve sweet slumber. Seems To do ok with the hylands, but once my legs start Kicking it's a wrap, nothing but time helps, why is it that it is dam near impossible to sleep at night dark and comfy as soon as a lil light comes in and people are moving around u start to fall asleep?  Lol i think they made tramadol by dropping a whole lab of crap in a bucket? This pill has so many adverse affects geez.

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by wewar, Jan 31, 2011
I am over a week now and feeling quite ok. I think my sleep patterns are still disturbed. I am restless and dream a lot which makes me tired during the day. GI ok, aches now and then. I am trying to think what else i do that makes a diffeerence. I think it will be clearer if i make a list of whats current for me presently.  I have been using Tramadol for two years. 50-100mg a day on average. A week is the longest I have gone without so hurray.

1. Meditation practice/mindfullness/ binaural sounds to help get off to sleep
2. Increased excersise. Cycling to work, jogging, going to the gym and then the hot tub etc
3. I have taken up vegetarian cookery to focus on and help keep good diet in general.( I made some rosemary flat bread and its the proudest I have been for a while)
4. keep a journal in my diary of my thoughts
5. I take Omega3 but with emphasis on the EPA content more than DHA. I also use MACA and Milk thistle for energy boost. I also take Brufen and codeine rarely
6. I have started a firm budget of spending which is a distraction like the cookery. This is also very politically correct in the UK at the moment ha ha
7. Yoga.. very good for the siezed up feeling getting off Tramadol induces.

Hope this helps

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by Ducky444, Jan 31, 2011
I took my last tram Sunday 1/16/2011. I think that makes today day 16... If so I've been off mathematically. Whatever, fatigue and restlessness continue. This time, you and Nora, Dam, rain, Hawkfan,  wewar,  dani & heal and others that come and go are helping me each day.I admit it would be so nice to take a dam pill and be sedated again.

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by DamTram, Jan 31, 2011
IT WOULD ONLY BE NICE FOR TWO HOURS!  And then...devastation would ensue.  As you already know.  STAY STRONG, DUCKY!!  Thinking of you.

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by StephC28, Jan 31, 2011
Good morning all!

This is day 30 (30!) for me and I just wanted to let everyone know…it keeps getting better… :)

I haven’t posted in a few days as I’ve had family in town, but I have been keeping up by reading everyone’s posts. You are all doing awesomely! REALLY SO IMPRESSED AND INSPIRED. I often go back and read posts from other “generations” of people getting off this drug, and I’m impressed and inspired by their stories as well. I wouldn’t say I’ve ever had a CRAVING to take tram again…but the thought does pass through my head from time to time. I simply come here and read and the moment passes. This place is special like that.

In my experience, all of you who are past day 5-7…you’re through the worst! However, that doesn’t mean the next 3 weeks are going to be pain-free. As someone on here said…it took most of us a long time to get our bodies dependent on this, and it’s going to take a while to get them to think on their own again. So take deep breaths (seriously) and know you’re really on your way. Also know days 7 and on are NOTHING like the first few days, the WD isn’t linear (you’ll have a good day 12 and an awful day 14), and you can ABSOLUTELY make it through.

Jake: how ya doing? Didn’t mean to be preachy or anything…just voicing an opinion (since you asked!). I hope you’re doing well whatever way you decided to go.

Stay determined all. That’s what’s gonna get us through this...

Oh, and enjoy your monday! :)

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by dani170, Jan 31, 2011
Ducky444,

You're right Damtram!! We have to remind ourselves of the consequences, WITHDRAWALS'S (YUCK), money, and all the other negative contributors to this drug!!! I just remind myself every morning "today I will have a "natural high"!!!!

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by NoraTorious, Jan 31, 2011
Steph-congrats on day 30!!! I am so proud!! How are you feeling? I especially curious, because I am on day 26, and though there are improvements, I am still feeling the heart palpitations and bad. I see my psychiatrist today, I am hoping he has some answers for me.
Everyone is doing so well here, not only supporting each other but taking care of themselves. I am so proud of all of you!!



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by heal303, Jan 31, 2011
Its so nice to see such a supportive group. I was planning on coming back yesterday but besides the Tram problem I am still dealing with the Lyme and co symptoms. I am having lots of feeling coming up from anger,confusion,sadness etc. I am seeing clearly that the Tram makes way more brain fog,confusion for me.This is also one of the symptoms that Lyme and co have.It seems to also mess with my eyes. Probably a liver thing?? I was wondering what symptoms all of u feel r caused by Tram ? One of my friends,friends is a pharmacist and he said he has 3 friends that r addicted to Tram and he feels its a horrible,evil drug. I also am wondering if your docs agreed that the tram is addictive or r they saying it isn't ? Hope everyone has a Love and Light Peaceful day. Hugs

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by NoraTorious, Jan 31, 2011
Heal-my pain management Dr increased my dosage then started treating me like a junkie. My PC Dr saw the amount I was taking and nearly lost it. That is what got me to stop. I got rid of the pain Mgmt Dr. But all of my current Drs are in complete agreement: this is a much dangerous lethal drug than it was initially touted to be. On a small scale, it reminds me of how Radium was thought to be a miracle drug and a cure all, when it was first discovered. I think the last 3 or4 years is proving how terrible Tramadol is. I would not be surprised if the truth rears its ugly head in the next 5 years.

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by Ducky444, Jan 31, 2011
Thanks dam tram, I have these moments when I think crazy like "h--- with it, I'm old anyway, what the h---, I'll just use it and be sick and numb all the time and have the energy to go to work at least. My insurance allowed my prescriptions to be free-in the past I spent plenty on this drug but for about three years it's been free-that didn't help! My pharmacy knew I was addicted but rather than take me aside and tell me what they knew they were creepy and sneaky and made me paranoid. So tramsmart here went to mail order! I'd like all energy I put into this clandestine enterprise back please!
Well I'm going to get through this some how I hoped day 15-16 would be a tad easier....love to you all!,,

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by NoraTorious, Jan 31, 2011
My husband and I are in a pretty tight space, moneywise. So we need to drop our cobra insurance. I still am insured by Kaiser, so, even though they have caused many problems for me & my family, I have no other option. But it is better than no insurance. I have this month to settle things up with my current Drs. I am hoping to go back once my husband finds permanent work.

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by NoraTorious, Jan 31, 2011
Ducky, those days were pretty tough for me too. Trust me when I say, better days ahead. There will hard ones too, but better days ahead, for sure! <3

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by Ducky444, Jan 31, 2011
Thanks for the encouragement today was dreadfully long! I was walking through mud all day. I hate insurance companies!!!

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by NoraTorious, Jan 31, 2011
Does anyone here know anything about Gabapentin

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by DamTram, Jan 31, 2011
It's supposedly similar to Lyrica...which, like Tramadol, worked for me at the start...and then stopped.  

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by NoraTorious, Jan 31, 2011
My pysch prescribed them for pain and anxiety, but only 100mgs 3x a day. I can't say for sure if it is working.
The kinda plus side to being with Kaiser is that they do offer acupuncture and biofeedback, 2 things I will need for sure.
Just hanging in there.

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by heal303, Jan 31, 2011
Nora,thats terrible you were treated that way. I just want to share something I am doing that I am loving. Earthing bands.  www.earthing.com   It has helped me with pain,sleep and more relaxed. Hoping it will help me get through the withdrawels. Best to ramp up time using them, as it can cause detox,herx.  Nite all.

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by DamTram, Jan 31, 2011
Definitely worth a try...but BE WARNED -- one of the side effects is...

...drumroll...

TEARFULNESS!!  The Lyrica was the start to my downfall at work, though the Tramadol took it and ran with it.  

Also...weight gain.  Pharmaceuticals are awesome!  Except when they don't work, and make you think you're crazier than you actually are, and throw your body in the garbage can.  

Again, though, the Lyrica helped me through the worst of the Tram w/d's.  I will always be thankful for that.

DAY 14, GUYS!  It is almost TO THE MINUTE, two weeks ago, that I took my last Trama****s.  I had no idea that I would EVER, EVER, EVER think that life was beautiful...or that I would actually enjoy the majority of the minutes of the day.  I thank my time on Tramadol, because it made my life so much ****ier than it ever was, before...and having survived it, I get to live a life that is different than any other one that I lived before.

When I used to get depressed, have panic attacks, be exhausted, and have whole body pain...I didn't believe that I had any power to control any of it.  My 2 coping mechanisms were: go to sleep, or go to the doctor.  During AND before Tramaggeddon.  I've been able to spend the last 2 weeks, however, regulating my OWN emotions and physical pain...with only the help of natural supplements.  I TOOK MY POWER BACK, YOU GUYS!  AND YOU WILL, TOO!  My body and brain are not optimal, but they are mine and I am going to learn how to use them as best as I can...with the help of TALK therapy, with both a Psychiatrist and Social Worker.  Who do NOT throw scripts in my face.

I took the Western Medicine Train, and it derailed.  Broken bones, surgery, and infection will surely have me a'knockin in the future...but that's it.  It just didn't work for me.  

I'm taking ownership and responsibility for my well-being, and no person, situation, or pill is going to take it away from me.

Today was my 1st day on 9mg of Effexor, down from 18.75mg...and I swear I was even smiling in wall-to-wall traffic.  Can't wait to have it all out of my system!  Stupid brain zaps.  >.<

I was almost ready for the Snowpocalypse tomorrow, but realized I'd forgotten the Kitten Chow.  Other than going out tomorrow to get it, I'm entering full bunker-mode.

Lastly...guess who was cleared by the Psychiatrist to go back to work??

THIS GUY!!  Fingers crossed for Monday.

Stay strong, powerful people!

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by kaz47, Feb 01, 2011
Hi everyone - today is my husbands 22nd day free from tramadol - 3 whole weeks - what a journey! He went through a pretty bad 24 hours night 19/day 20 but for the last 2 nights has slept well - all the better for the fact that he is letting his body get back to normal by not taking any sleep aids - has even chucked the hylands in the bin as he found they were not consistantly helpful. After not having any night sweats for about 10 days night 20 he sweated buckets - am of the opinion that this was the last of the poison leaving his system - for those on weeks 1 and 2 don't be perturbed if this happens to you as well - I think Steph said in her last posting this is not a linear recovery and you may find that you think you are out of the woods when you suddenly have a day or night of symptoms BUT it does get better - as the old saying goes 'time is the best healer' and it is physically and emotionally ,so DON'T GIVE UP! The worst thing for him has definately been the RLS and insomnia - he is still restless when he liies down to go to sleep but this does seem to be diminishing daily - also he is managing to go to sleep and even if he wakes up in the night is able to get back to sleep again.  for those who are finding the insomnia and RLS the worst hang in there - it does start to get better but it takes TIME.

Whilst I wish he hadn't had to go through this we have learnt so much about eachother as a result of this process- thanks to all of the posters on here who have given us the support we needed as we were totally clueless when it came to tramadol and withdrawal - Madtram, Steph and Sheliz postings have been particularly helpful so thankyou to them particularly. I think 3 weeks in we feel even stronger as a couple and are now of the opinion if we can get through this we can do anything! I say we - I have been the sometimes reluctant passenger on this rollercoaster ride - his strength of will and determination and love for me and our children has been truly inspirational . I am very proud of him and am in awe of all of you - please keep battling this - you deserve to have your lives back! Good luck.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 01, 2011
Kaz47- I am so happy to hear how things are going! I enjoy your perspective very much. I know it must be hard to watch your loved one go through this. I feel bad for what I have put my husband through, but grateful that I have such a good supportive person in my life such as him. Your husband is a brave and strong person to be going through this, and so are you! I am on day 27, and I can say that things get better. That does not mean there are not going to be some bad moments, hours or days ahead, but they are chased by better days. Good luck, and keep up the good work! That means all of you!!

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by Ducky444, Feb 01, 2011
Day 17 not sleeping more than a few hours for awhile now. At first I slept fine-not now. This not as tough as day 1-5 but not a happy time yet either. Fee l like I'm going through the motions....hopeful things improve for me soon. Thanks for being there...

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by NoraTorious, Feb 01, 2011
Ducky, these were tough times for me too.  It was pretty spotty for me. It is still tough but in a week or so, you will turn a corner. It was after the 24th day that I felt better more than not. You are getting better, even if you don't feel it, just in small increments. I promise you it will get better. Just promise me that you will hang in there. If I can do it, you can do it. I am not always the strongest person person in the world, so if I can make it this far, I am sure you can make it just as far.
<3

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by hawkfan684, Feb 01, 2011
Day 15

I haven't been on here for quite a few days because I have been busy working and doing other things to keep my mind off of trams.  Today is my last work day of my 8 day stretch.  I am partly excited to have tomorrow off but also partly not excited.  Just not looking forward to a whole day by myself, and the we are in a winter blizzard til tomorrow night so there is not a whole lot I can go out and do.  
The last week I have felt energized with the help of the b12 but yesterday and today I feel like I have no energy, which I know that it is expected and it will happen every few days.  I just can't wait for spring and more energy.  
I was excited to read and catch up on everyone's progress.  Everyone is doing so great.  It feels like its been years since I stopped taking that awful drug when it's only been 15 days.  
I worked out yesterday for the first time in a long time so that could have been the reason why I felt unenergized yesterday, but I need to stick to it.  So gonna do a quick work out (zumba-love it) and then get ready for work.  I hope all of you have a good and warm day!!!!!!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 01, 2011
Hawk-I am sending some California sunshine your way!! You are doing so well! Especially being off the Tram AND working! That in itself is exhausting. I have been exercising, the first time in about 3 or 4 years. I am the girl who ran up the stairs the local ampitheatre along with the firemen. And now I am like a marshmallow. But I am walking 15-20 minutes every day. It may not seem like much, but for me, it is something.

Hawk- you will be fine. Take a lot of hot baths or showers, get some easy to cook food, and some good books and movies to watch. You will get through this, and it will get better. I promise.


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by Ducky444, Feb 01, 2011
Hey Hawkfan now I remember why I can't keep up with how many days I've been off tram-you've been missing I'm 2 days ahead of you.  So i am on day 17, thanks.  You've been missed!
NoraTorrious, thank you, thank you, thank you! I needed that encouragement! I am hanging in there but I've often thought about either taking a damn pill for relief, or calling my doc for some other drug. haven't done either one thank goodness and all of you!

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by rainallday, Feb 01, 2011
Day 30 (I think) Started Jan 3rd...Watching that blizzard in the midwest, Good luck hawkfan, looks like a heck of a storm...
     Things feel quite normal at day 30, just weary from the war fought in january...Marching forward into february...
Too bad we don;t all get a victory celebration in hawaii...Instead just the mundane task of daily blahs of winter and work..Looking for little daily victories, like how good it felt last night going up and down my steps from bedroom to kitchen..Body feels stronger and more at ease which is great...Mentally is a little harder, again , because its about adjusting back to reality..(And reality wasnt exactly nirvana)...I find it helps immensly to write down goals and lists for like grocery cause I've been forgetful..Things people said last week at work feels like months ago...
    The quercitin helps wonderfully with the sinus headaches that I had before turning to damitall...For neck and back pain I have the vaporub and some essential oils like peppermint, and of course aspirin..
  So 'normal' is returning in full, with aches and pains we all hate, but I'm better prepared as hopefully everyone here will be..I've read many times last month how important it is to 'plan' for life after quitting....So hope evryone here keeps searching for natural alternative treatments for their ailments as the come...
   Hope everyone feels strong and happy and healthy this week and happy February!!! Can't wait for spring!!

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by DamTram, Feb 01, 2011
HawkFan...Day 15 here, too.  You're amazing for having been working through this!!  I'm just one state to the east of you, so SnowtoriousB-I-G is hitting...15 seconds ago.  WHEW!  Snow day tomorrow.  Just keep taking care of yourself!!

Ducky --  KEEP IT UP!!  You are the 2-day-light-ahead for me!  I'm with Nora on the bath!

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by DamTram, Feb 01, 2011
RainAllDay - CONGRATS!!!   I still can't imagine being 30 days out...the last 15 days feel like 15 years.  I'm so happy for you!

Nora - After your Gabapentin question, later last night, my ankles and knees were searing with an 8/10 pain...I figured it was w/d from Trama**** or Effexor.  So, I took my Lyrica AND IT HELPED SO MUCH!  Maybe it's helpful in extreme circumstances, so you don't build up tolerance?

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by Ducky444, Feb 01, 2011
just have to say hello to rainall day! missed you and hawk this past week-but you always chear me up thanks-and thanks Damtram snow day's so much better than no days! good job

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by NoraTorious, Feb 01, 2011
Rain- so glad to hear from you, I was wondering how you were! Congrats!!!

I am day 27, and hearing that things improve makes me feel so much better! DamTram is right, those 15 days feel like 15 years, and last Friday I thought I would never make it this far. 4 days later, and now, it doesn't seem so far away. These walks around the neighborhood are nothing for some, but for me it's a huge deal. The fact I can get out of the house and take a shower every other day is an enormous change for me.

I realize (and I know I am repeating myself) that the big changes are not always obvious. But every day there are good changes, in small increments. We spent a long time allowing this drug to infiltrate our lives for so long, there is going to be some fighting to get our lives back and own them completely. Jeez, sometimes I feel like Faust. I sold my soul and I had to go to Hell to get it back again.

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by DamTram, Feb 01, 2011
I LOVE THAT FAUST COMPARISON, NORA!

The 40 mph winds are making the power lines say, "You will not have internet for much longer!".

They closed our public schools for the first time since 1967.  This weather is SERIOUS!  It's great, because I don't feel badly about lying around doing nothing...because if I left the apartment, I would die.

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by madtram, Feb 01, 2011
Ducky, you are doing so well dealing with the lack of sleep.  I have had a terrible week of insomnia, due I think to a course of the antibiotic cipro which is a GABA antagonist, (stops GABA from binding).   Contrary to my own advice, I am not being at all accepting & continue to search for anything other than benzos that may help.  Just another lesson in how specialised our individual biochemistry is.  Have taken 4x the recommended dose of benadryl & feel wide awake as ever whereas normally half a tab is more than enough to knock me out.  Anyway, hang in there Ducky, you must be due to turn the corner any day now.

Re gabapentin, I like DamTram's suggestion of using 'as needed', although there are plenty of reports of successful continuous use, using occasionally should avoid any risk of tolerance or needing to taper off if your gaba receptors turn out to be as touchy as mine.  If you want to check out other people's reports on prescription meds, www.askapatient.com has pages of references for drugs like gabapentin.

Kaz, so glad your dh is feeling better, he is so lucky to have such an understanding partner.  My own dh did his best but I know a lot of the time, he thought I was malingering or otherwise mentally ill.

Heal, I was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome as many of my symptoms mimicked that condition, including extreme postural hypotension, (very low blood pressure when changing position), which lead to fainting which I had never suffered from prior to tram.  Not to discount your lyme condition at all but a  read through the whole of Emily's journal will show you what a variety of symptoms can be attributed to tram.

I hope the blizzard bound get some benefit from the compulsory down time.  Having just come out of the most severe floods in recorded history, the north of my state of Queensland is about to be hit with a category 5 cyclone.  Yet some would have us believe that burning down acres of rain forest & emitting more carbon has no influence on global climate change.

Best to all.

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by heal303, Feb 01, 2011
Hi Nora, I was dxed with lyme and co and started treatment way before I started Tram.  For yrs I was dxed with Chrinic fatigue syndrome,Fibro and Multiple chemical sentivities. 23 yrs later finally got the Lyme,Babesia,Bartonella and Ehrlichia dx. By IgenX lab in Palo Alto.All of those can be caused by a tick and other biting insects,from mom to baby and more. Are u meaning the Tram caused your cfs? Anyway I know I am dealing with these diseases and know I am addicted to tram.I am sure there is a cross over with symptoms. When I get off this evil drug I will know what causing what.  Trying to read all the posts but my eyes r really hurting. Looks like u live in Ca like me. Hope you and others r doing well tonight. ;0)

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by hawkfan684, Feb 01, 2011
Thanks for all the responses.  I had a heck of a time getting home from work and I only live 2 blocks away from my work.  I had to park on the street because the snow pile in front of my apt parking lot is like 4 feet high and there was no way my car would have made it through that.  I barely made it out of my works parking lot.  The snow here is horrible.  The 40mph winds are suppose to stop by noon tomorrow but this is Iowa and I doubt it will.  My dog trixie is a keeshond which is an alaskian huskey/pomeranian mix.  She normally LOVES going outside and playing in the snow, well today she doesn't like it so much because of the wind.  
I am off tomorrow and possibly so is my boyfriend, he wont know for sure til in the morning.  I hope he doesn't have to go into work.  But either way I am going to try to really enjoy my day off because I have another 8 day stretch starting thursday due to having drill this weekend.
I will have to start doing the hot baths again.  To me it just feels like it would be a lot easier to have a hot tub lol, but I don't.  Living in an apt isn't the greatest when wanting to take a bath because the tub is tiny.  

Madtram- the reason why you felt the wide awake from the benadryl is because if you take too much of it, the effects are opposite.  I found that out because one wasn't helping so I tried two and it made me WIDE awake.  I looked it up and one of the side effects said that if you take more than the recommended dose it can cause you to feel awake than tired.

I am hoping the big lack of energy the last two days are due to the weather we have been having here.  I have been sleeping 8 hours a night on my own without any sleep aides so that part I am glad I have back.  The no energy thing I hope goes away again because I very much dislike the feeling.  The b-12s helped some at work so can't complain too much.  

Damtram- My bf and I laughed our a** off at SnowtoriousB-I-G.  I don't think there could even be a better name than that one.  It so fits the 40mph wind.  We are planning to eventually move out of the midwest, as soon as I finish my nursing school.  This sh*t is something I wont miss.

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by DamTram, Feb 02, 2011
Hawk - So glad you made it home safe!  I have friends that have been stuck on Lake Shore Drive for NINE HOURS!!!  The city shut it down WITH HUNDREDS OF CARS STILL ON IT!  And noooo police or rescue force to help anyone off!  My friend has been in the same spot for 5 hours...and still no word about how to get them off.  I just helped someone get out of our alley, but the winds are at 70mph now and my hurt hand (no glove fits) was so frozen it was burning and I was screaming and cursing and scared my kitties.  =/  I'm not going to be able to sleep until I know my friends are home and safe, so this is going to be a looong night.  SO GLAD YOU'RE OK!  And, I guarantee your boyfriend will NOT have work tomorrow.  Like, $100 on it.

The coolest thing?  SNOW THUNDER!  Thunder and lightning all night with 13'' of snow so far!

I can't wait to move back West.

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by hawkfan684, Feb 02, 2011
Damtram that's crazy.  I am SO SORRY to hear about your friends.  I can't believe a city would even do that especially in weather like that.  I'll say a prayer for your friends that they stay warm and get home soon.  That just blows my mind.  Im so so very sorry =(

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by DamTram, Feb 02, 2011
The word just came that they won't be rescued until the morning...and are spending the night in their cars =(  I can't believe this is happening.  Thank you for your prayers...I am so grateful.  Hoping you get some rest!

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by rainallday, Feb 02, 2011
Madtram I heard about the cat5 storm tonight while working,  hope it weakens fast I know how bad the floods were and yall don't need more..Glad yall still had my favorite tennis tournament in the world, I watched every night..Also sorry about your pains and insomnia I know youve been through so much....I hope it gets better quickly....

So many suddenly going through so much, its aweful....we had thunderstorms tonight and when I got home from work I find my tarp over my cat shelter is destroyed by the rain, it all folded inward capturing about 100 gallons of water which flooded my shelter and legs when I released it..Then i come upstairs to find my sweetheart 20 yr old cat very weak and looking close to death...she hadnt ate or drank in days....for some crazy reason she got up and drank and ate when I started to write this so I'm relieved some...I had yelled at the dumb tarp and scared the strays which just made me angrier at myself and everything else.....What took days and months to get a little better all can go wrong in minutes..

Reading everyone elses issues make mine look stupid so I can just calm down now and say I'm sorry so many are having a tough tough day, night, and week.....
Ducky, Hawk, Nora, damtram, and madtram Your all in my thoughts and I'm humbled to read your posts....Glad everyone is here for each other and hope we all get some deserving good luck real soon....
Gotta get back to my cat and decide whether to force meds or just let her be...


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by madtram, Feb 02, 2011
Rain, thanks for your thoughts & I so hope your beautiful Liammi rallies.  My 2 16 year-old furballs are sending over some extra healing purrs.  A collapsed shelter & an ailing family member are more than enough to deal with.

Hawk, thanks for the benadryl advice, now I know if 1 doesn't cut it, more is not better.  That really interests me from a biochemical perspective as I can appreciate how histamine receptors can have a finite capacity to be blocked but not how more substrate can have the opposite effect, (just being a biochem nerd here but I will have to look into this).

DamTram, I hope your friends have enough warm clothes with them, overnight in a car in a blizzard would not be fun.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 02, 2011
HEAL-I am not sure what you mean by CFS? Chronic Fatigue Syndrome? I have never been diagnosed with it. Really, I think my fatigue is due to my withdrawals, and the fact that I have not exercised properly in over 3 years! I know you have been through a lot, but get the Tramadol out of your system! I am finding my pain is much more manageable than I ever thought it would be. And even this small amount of exercise IS helping. This time last year I was taking tons of it. I was depressed, I could not leave the house, I could not bathe or take care of myself. I could barely take care of my household. I am 28 days without, and aside from my W/D symptoms, I feel better than I did when I was taking it. Your results may vary, but it seems a lot of the people here would agree they felt worse overall whilst taking this crap than not.

MADTRAM, my heart goes out to you and yours. From that awful flood and now the cyclone-oh, hang in there, I am thinking good thoughts for you. Same with DAMTRAM and HAWK. I hope this goes quickly, and most importantly you take car of yourselves. I am worried about your friends spending the night in their car, if poss, please keep us updated on how they are. I am glad you both have furry friends to keep you warm and occupied during the storm!

Damtram--are you from CA?

RAIN-hope your sweet kitty feels better. It sounds like you are doing quite well despite the kitty shelter fiasco. I am glad to hear you feel an improvement at 30 days. I am looking forward to it. I never thought I would make it this far.

I am thinking warm, safe thoughts for you all. :-)

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by Ducky444, Feb 02, 2011
Hey all, day 18 am I feeling a little better? I think so....have that other shoe to drop feeling again; which is better than both shoes stuck in the mud.  Congrats to Rain on 30 days! a major milestone. Madtram you are a wealth of information, thanks!
I am so sorry about the terrible snows, please careful! Thanks to you all you are my rock.

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by DamTram, Feb 02, 2011
At 1am, my friends were told that they would not be rescued until daylight.  So, they just stayed in their cars and some got frostbite.  At 5am, they were finally rescued.  One somehow got to the train and through the 8 foot drifts back to her apartment and is now safe...with her car still on Lake Shore Drive.  The other friend was rescued and put in a hotel downtown...with his car still on Lake Shore Drive.  I could finally go to sleep at 6am, as I couldn't knowing they were out there in this madness.

I do not live in CA...I know, I was promoting MMJ.  I used it medically, here, BECAUSE of the last 2 months on Tramadol.  It allowed me to calm down (as my life disintegrated around me) at night so that I could sleep.  I never used it before, and now that I'm not on Tramadol...I can't tolerate it.  But I maintain that it was the ONLY thing that allowed me to recover in Days 1-4.  Nothing else allowed me to sleep through that nausea and freezing/burning.

MadTram - I'm so sorry.  I'd never experienced a natural disaster before, but now that I have...I pray that you are safe and that your life is not severely affected.  

Is the gabapentin working, Nora?

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers, guys...it means so much.

I was rejected by my first PhD program via e-mail last night at 2am (thanks, UCSD)...so this is my first bout with depressive feelings off of the Tram.  Will let you know how I cope!

All my love, Warriors.

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by Ducky444, Feb 02, 2011
Hey Damtram I just dropped out of a PysD program-too much to do and try to work full time, stay sane....For me I think I was driven to do all I could to avoid myself. Did UCSD at least give you any ideas about how to become what they are looking for? Glad your friends are safe and hopefully everyone is warm.

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by DamTram, Feb 02, 2011
They didn't!  That's why I'm so frustrated.  On paper, everything is perfect.  But because of Tramaggedon, I wasn't able to e-mail and converse with professors during the process (it took EVERYTHING in me to complete the applications while teaching!).  I can only assume this was my downfall.  Publications, scores, GPA's, a Master's degree, laser-sharp research interests, well written essays, stellar recommendations from stellar researchers/professors.  It doesn't really make sense.

So, on this, I blame Tramadol.  

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by madtram, Feb 02, 2011
How disappointing DamTram, it must be very steep competition, you sound eminently qualified.  What's your area of expertise & what about yours Ducky?

Our cyclone caused a lot of property damage further North but thankfully, no-one appears to have been seriously injured, which is a great relief after the high death toll from the floods.

Rain, I hope there's some good news about your kitty.

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by DamTram, Feb 03, 2011
Human Cognition and Development are my things.  My interests are threefold:

1) If poverty mimics disability, then how do students in underfunded areas differ cognitively (i.e., how do they learn best?)

2) Bridging the gap between the Ivory Tower research in attention/perception/cognition/learning and what teachers and administrators actually implement in the classroom...by communicating findings and applications in a teacher-acceptable way so that children are learning in the BEST, most effective way possible...as science has spent billions of dollars figuring out how to make it happen.

3) If resiliency can be developed in children in whom it is not innate...and, if so, how does it affect cognition and learning?  How can it be manifested in a classroom setting, and how EXACTLY does it affect cognition?

SOMEONE ACCEPT ME, PLEASE!  I swear I'm a good person and will do all of your research bidding until doctoratized.

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by madtram, Feb 03, 2011
Wow, DamTram, this is such worthwhile work.  I am very interested in what can influence resiliency & think it's one of the most important attributes you can help develop in a child.

Are there many institutions that would be a good fit for you?

Apologies to everyone else for temporarily highjacking the thread but maybe DT can give us some extra tips for resilience during withdrawal, not to mention not getting accepted by our employer of first choice.

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by DamTram, Feb 03, 2011
Maybe institutions that seemed like a good fit are not?  Portland State is the most congruent, as far as i can tell...

Yes, sorry everyone...these life events would have been DULLED by Trama**** before...so it's so therapeutic to be able to come here and talk them out, instead.  Especially for single me.

Thanks so much, MadTram, for listening and responding.

I became so interested in resilience because of students after students (6-13 year-olds) whose lives, by outsiders, would be deemed 'traumatic and painful' who are actually able to work through ANY struggle effectively (these are children, mind you!) and without outward or described emotional trauma.  WHAT IF WE COULD HAVE BEEN MADE TO BE BETTER AT THIS AS CHILDREN, DURING MATH, SCIENCE, LANGUAGE ARTS, AND SOCIAL SCIENCE??  The world, and ourselves, would be different.  Surely.  NO TURNING TO PILLS FOR ANSWERS!  For instance.

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by Ducky444, Feb 03, 2011
I work with these kids too! first taught behaviorally DO, inner city kids before mainstreaming. Now I work with kids and families coming out of incarceration, served for various crimes.  Big gang problem.  I'm a clinical social worker(MSW-LCSW).  Seriously check out some SW programs you'd be very surprised at how much research is done now adays.  Ive noticed the low IQ scores of our kids and think its mainly because they haven't been exposed to much of anything related to the tests.  Some of my kids haven't been in school since 3-4th grade and now they are 15,16, 17.

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by wewar, Feb 03, 2011
I had a go at a meditation practice called Metta Bhavana. It was guided but harder than simply counting the breath. I consists of 5 stages. Concentrating on well bieng and kindness to 1. To ourselves 2. A good friend 3. A non friend or someone we find difficult 4. all the first four 5. Everybody and everything else in the universe.

I think this is what this post is all about really. Support, kindness, non judgemental regard through words

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by NoraTorious, Feb 03, 2011
Mad, you and Ducky have a special place in the hereafter. You are both working in jobs that I greatly admire. I am just a lowly artist turned criminal justice student. But you guys have jobs I find so admirable and brave. These are people with no voice and you are speaking for them.

Mad, have you thought about SDSU? It is a good school. It has a reputation as a party school, but it has some great programs. I know a lot of people who went their for their teaching degrees and psychology degrees. And can you contact one of the profs you were dealing with at UCSD and see if they can give you any ideas? (if you came to San Diego, we would be neighbors)!

Day 29 for me. The worst now is just the anxiety and the boundless lack of energy. My Mom has a person she hires to help her clean house and do gardening, and she is having her come over on Saturday. I know this sounds crazy, but there is a lot of pre-cleaning I am trying to get done in the next two days. Yesterday was a total wash for me since I spent part of the night in the ER with stomach GI pains that made me feel like I was wearing the world's tightest corset or the alien baby was going to pop out of me at any given moment. I got lucky, the ER dr was the same one I saw when I had been there last and admitted me to the hospital for detox. She knew my concern for narcotics and gave me something for stomach cramps that was non narcotic and non addictive. But I was in bed the better part of yesterday.

I can say as I approach day 30,  I do feel better, not as anxious, but it has not disappeared completely. I can say I am much better than I was 2 weeks ago. This non -linear thing is exhausting. I know once my husband finds work that will alleviate some of my stress. I can rationalize in my mind that I can't be stressed out about the things I cannot control, but my body is going to tell you something else. This is a true test for me, all this stress and I cannot bury myself in medication. I am clear-minded and the reality is blaring in my face in living color, HD.

My best friend offered my husband a job. It would not pay as much as his prior job, but it is a good company (I have worked for them in the past). The problem is, my best friend has a drinking problem. I have called her on it several times. She called last night and talked to him, she was pretty sloshed when she talked to me, so I am hoping she is going to remember all this. I told her this had better not be one of her drunken promises thing, and I advised my husband to call her this afternoon and follow-up. I am the last person to judge, since I am an ex pill-popper, but she is a functional drunk, and I fear that her 'slip is beginning to show'. Part of me wants to talk to her husband about it, but then I think that I should mind my own beeswax, I have enough on my plate. I have been steering clear of her since she came to my house (drunk) and acted inappropriately.  She had the telltale 'ring of red' on her lips from drinking red wine from a bottle, she reeked of wine, and although I asked her, she denied it. About 3 days later we found a small bottle of cheap red wine under the bed. I called her and confronted her, she tried to blame it on my neighbor, who does not even like or drink red wine (unless it is sangria), then she friend to blame my husband, who would never drink from little bottles covertly, and nothing as cheap as this. Then, she tried to blame our cleaning woman, which was such a cheap shot, I lost it. I knew she was drunk and I was fed up with her behavior. I am trying to be patient, being an ex addict, but it is really hard to watch your friend act like a fool while plowed on cheap red wine. I believe that the only person that can change you is yourself.

Well, enough about me and my problems. Hope all is well, and that everyone is safe and warm.

FIGHT ON, WARRIORS!!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 03, 2011
Correction, we found the bottle under the couch, not the bed. Sorry about that :-/

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by DamTram, Feb 03, 2011
Nora, having watched 5 million episodes of A&E Intervention, I would say don't mind your own beeswax and talk to her husband.  If she dumps you as a friend but ends up getting help in the end, it will be more than worth it...and, most likely, she'll be thankful later.  Given that she might get your husband a job, though, I suppose survival of the fittest might trump being a life-saver.  I really don't know.  Let me know what happens!

We found out today that my mom has a mass in her left lung, most likely lung cancer.  Why is this all happening at once?

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by NoraTorious, Feb 03, 2011
Oh DamTram, I am so so sorry, I cannot begin to tell you. Your Mom seems like a really cool person. Man, I hear ya, when it rains it pours!

I feel bad posting what I did especially after Wewars post. Wewar, I am looking into meditation classes locally. There are some Buddhist temples and a monastery nearby. I really think it will help me. I am not trying to judge my best friend. I love her. But now, more than ever, I cannot be around people who are drug users or drinkers. Too much chaos. Luckily, my drinking days are behind me. I don't drink much, I don't like to mix it with my prescriptions. I am trying to stay anchored during this tsunami I call my life, and being around other addicts makes it tough.

I am very sorry if I came off high-handed, that is not what I meant. I am trying to stay on track, and I cannot be derailed.

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by StephC28, Feb 03, 2011
Hi all! Hope everyone is having a good day today. I’m finally caught up a little with class prep things and wanted to say hi…

Nora: you asked me how I was feeling as I’m a few days ahead of you (day 33 today). Well, these last few days have been pretty great! My mornings are always good (consistently since about day 25...) SO much better than tramadol days…then I still get tired mid/late afternoon. I have been sleeping well (7-8 hours), though I continue to wake up in the middle of the night for about 15-20 minutes. Still taking melatonin. GI problems are mostly gone (fingers crossed). I will say – when I stopped taking Tram (and percocet/vicodin from a knee surgery) 2 years ago, it took me about 2 months to return to feeling 100%. So be patient. Also, now that I’ve used it for the last year in pretty consistently high quantities, I assume it will take me even longer than that to be 100%. But I’ll take 75% and tramadol-free over popping 16 pills any day! I’ve also heard it’s more about length of time using than amount…so if you’ve been on it for a while, it will take a while.  Just keep trucking ahead! It definitely is getting better and more consistently so. I mostly am talking about physical symptoms here. In terms of other things? I definitely get irritated at times, and angry for no reason. But that hasn't happened in the last few days. Sometimes feel depressed, but again, nothing that's too overwhelming. I've never been an anxious person, so that's one symptom that I can't speak to. I do feel more nervous about teaching at times...which might be considered anxious...I just think it's normal when getting up in front of a large class unprepared. Now that I've got my classes under control, I am much less nervous.

DamTram and Ducky: so impressed with you two! That’s amazing. I’m reading a book I’m sure you’ve both read – The Boy Who was Raised as a Dog (or something like that) and it’s seriously blowing my mind. I am so interested in children and trauma…and their recovery from it. I think there is so much wonderful work going on in investigating the connections of the brain and emotions (which sounds silly I know as the brain controls those…but I think people often think they have “control” over emotions when much of it is simply how the brain develops). BTW, I know really almost nothing about all this stuff…so feel free to correct me if I’m totally wrong! :)

DamTram- the world of higher academia is SO competitive. When I first applied to PhD programs I “only” applied to six and didn’t get into any. After that I had to apply to 15 and finally got in. Perhaps just try applying to more schools. Sometimes they have a candidate in your field already, and they simply don’t have room to have another person in the same field. From everything you’ve written, you’re completely qualified and just have to keep trying for it if this is what you want to do with your life. I know it is so disappointing (I sat at a bar and drank martinis and ate chocolate cake upon receiving my 6th rejection letter…) but it’s just a closed window, not a closed door (how cliché, I know, especially for an English teacher!)

Rainsallday – just wanted to say I’m thinking of you! Hope you’re doing okay. We're in the 30s now!! :)

Wewar – so good to see you’re still at the meditation. I think mindfulness practice is so important – especially in the later stages of WD.  

Kaz – SO GLAD you and your husband have turned the corner! I know it was a really hard few weeks, but I’m sure you guys are closer because if it. It’s so wonderful you were there for him and are such a supportive partner. It keeps getting better too! So you guys have a lot to look forward to. I've so appreciated your posts, and your lack of judgment, even on those of us (me) who did not come to this drug through legitimate means. Thank you!

Madtram - you're the best! Thanks for sticking around and giving us amazing medical insight and encouragement. Another question for you: I am still so short of breath a lot of the time. Like walking up stairs can wind me. I'm young(ish) and slim and work out and do yoga...so I'm thinking it's T-related. I've heard something about it on here a while back...Thoughts?

My bf is out of town for a few days. This is the first time I’ve been alone in our house since I moved here last spring. The experience of him being gone has taught me a couple things: one, I need to make new friends! I think with Tram I was content to sit alone inside doing whatever. NOT OKAY! I’m such a social person, and I really need to get out of the house now that I actually have the energy to do so. Two, even though it was my decision to quit and he knew nothing about my use, I still find myself more tempted to take Tram again without him here (but tempted in a theoretical way, not a real way as I don’t have any pills nor would really actually go out and get them…but certainly the thought has crossed my mind to be honest). I think this has to do with one of my triggers – loneliness. But so far I’ve been able to simply let the thought come and go, while I contemplate why it’s coming up. My therapist once said that I needed to "get curious"…why was I turning to drugs? What did I think they did for me? When did I want to use? And that that curiosity would “save” me. I think she was right in a lot of ways. The minute I engage my mind in figuring out answers to these things, the desire to take a pill diminishes. I think this is because drugs have overtaken our brains…tricked us in a sense…into thinking that it’s needed (let’s call it drug thinking). Once you force your brain to really think about how ludicrous that is, the drug-thought looses some of its grasp. Does that make sense? I don’t know…I know it helps me to write this. Sorry if it’s out there and unclear. Goes back to the fact I really know nothing about our brains and their wiring! :)

Anyway – stay strong and determined everyone! I say this to you as I repeat it to myself…

PS: For anyone in the very early days of WD or thinking about WD…know that I feel really pretty good most of the time– and nothing like days 2-5…so please don’t get discouraged because it takes a while to feel 100%. And also know it’s really different for everyone. Some NEVER want to take Tram again, some do. Some feel 100% at week 2, others week 3, others month 3. Just know that even in my hard moments (which is when I post here for the most part) I still am SO RELIEVED and PROUD and HAPPY to be off the poison Tramadol.

Be well all

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by StephC28, Feb 03, 2011
Sorry...I missed DamTram's latest post before I posted...

DamTram: I'm so sorry about your mom. Stay in the moment...get all the information first before you panic. I know this will be hard to hear...but look at the positive side: you are tramadol free now and can be her rock if it is cancer.

All that said...I do know it rings hallow...there is no explanation for pain sometimes. No reason for it. I once went to a yoga class and my teacher was talking about death. She was saying we have to accept the dark side of life because it's what makes us appreciate the light side. And as she talked..I "got" it on an intellectual level...but I just kept thinking..."yeah, you go tell that to my friend whose husband just died of a heart attack at age 32." Sickness is a part of health, death a part of life, blah blah blah. I get it. But it sure doesn't make it any easier.

I know there are no words that can provide true support right now...but know that all of us here will try!


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by NoraTorious, Feb 03, 2011
Steph-thanks for the insight. Last week was pretty bad, I felt so hopeless. I was sure I had ruined my body permanently, and I would never respond to anything. But this week I feel better, different. I am still tired and weak, but I know I have more of the bad stuff from the detox over and behind me. I can feel myself getting better, and feeling better. Late afternoon is the worst. I am so worn out. And I have done very little.

But getting closer to day 30, something that last week I thought I could never do, I can see better times ahead. Of douse, this would be so much easier if my husband was working and my kitty was not dying. I suppose what does not kill me makes me stronger.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 03, 2011
Me again. This is the first day in my recovery process that I have desired any drugs. Not necessarily Tramadol, but something to sedate me. Some Valium, a vicodin. Just something because I am having a lot of trouble dealing with reality. And knowing I have none, and no way of acquiring them truly frustrates me. I don't see my counselor for 2 weeks. I might have to make an appointment much sooner.

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by madtram, Feb 03, 2011
Dear Nora, no way are you permanently damaged, not to discount your great achievements to date, but 30 days is so early in the time line of ingesting the tramapoop for so long, (sorry I forget exactly how long you were on tram).  Read Emily at 30 days & you will see that there is so much progress to look forward to.

Would your husband be working directly for or with your friend in the new job?  I know jobs are scarce these days but it seems that your friend is losing her grip & it would be tough if as a boss or colleague, she is in a position to cause major upheaval in your family.  I may be biased as I have a close relative who is a long term alcoholic & it seems to me that alcohol can bring out the worst in people.

DamTram, I am also so sorry to hear about your mom & hope that it's an operable tumour if it does test cancerous.  I agree with Steph, that philosophy doesn't offer much consolation here, this just *****.

I love & share your ideas about resilience.  What misery could be spared, if children, (or anyone), could be shown how to model the behaviour of those who are able to thrive in the face of setbacks.

Steph, thanks for your success story with your post grad application process.  I will be enduring it all again myself next year, trying to get post grad certification as a dietician which is highly competitive.

  I don't know the answer to your question about the breathlessness but have seen others report this symptom in withdrawal.  Opioids are commonly prescribed for breathlessness suffered by cancer patients & do depress the respiration rate so perhaps this is a rebound effect.  I had periodic bouts of intolerance to even the mildest of exercise for a long time during withdrawal even though I had been a pretty much every day gym junkie.

Ducky, blessings to you too, what a demanding job, with I'm guessing minimal budget allocation.




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by madtram, Feb 03, 2011
Ha, the MedHelp censor elf apparently disapproves of the means by which you partake of an ice lolly or a throat lozenge but the **** enable you to insert your pejorative of choice anyway.

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by kaz47, Feb 04, 2011
Hi everyone - day 25 for my husband without tramadol - sleep is still up and down but we are getting there - many posters have said that sleep is the last thing to sort itself out so we are accepting of this and are taking one night at a time. Have taken the view throughout that if he's awake I will be awake also - this has helped I think but everyone is different and I don't actually need that much sleep so it hasn't been that much of an issue for me - just really difficult for him as he has never experienced insomnia before and I know in the early days thought he would never sleep again! But he has! Are looking forward to the night where he gets 7 solid hours though! Will have a celebration when that happens! For all of you in the early stages the other symptoms have all more or less vanished so be strong and hopeful!

Steph - good to hear you are doing well at day 33. Many congratulations - amazing! Breathlessness has been cited on here before as a symptom of w/d - my husband found that he was affected by this BEFORE he stopped taking the tabs - like you he is generally pretty fit (other than the problem with his back) and we didn't really understand where that was coming from - now we know! Breathlessness has now disappeared so I can only assume there was a connection - seems that everyone on here has different symptoms after early withdrawal - those with insomnioa seem to manage really well during the day - those who manage to sleep seem to lack energy during the day etc etc. Am sure that the issue will get better given time - I think that Nora said that the fact that the recovery is not linear is in itself exhausting - I think she is right - two steps forward and one step back but everyone on here is MOVING FORWARD - one step at a time! Thanks for the comments re my 'non judgementalness' - but to be honest don't think anyone is in a position to make judgements about anyone on here - we are all human and everyone has reasons for taking different paths at differnt times in their lives. To be honest it doesn't matter how you got stuck in the tramadol trap - no-one deserves it - I repeat you and others on here DESERVE to get your lives back irrespective whether you got hooked 'legitimately' or not! Your posts are very helpful to others so don't carry guilt - the people who produce this S**** and make it available so easily, and the doctors who keep prescribing it without any thought to the long term consequences are the ones who should be feeling guily!

Damtram - so sorry to hear about your mum - stay strong - the easiest thing in the world would be to cave now but you know how much she wants you to be healthy and happy - you would not be in any position to give her support stuck on the posonous tramadol - so keep going - take one day at a tme and stay positive - treatment for cancer has progressed and is progressing daily and I am sure things will work out well for you and your family. Will remember your mum in my prayers. The work you are trying to achieve with regard to children is fantastic - it is something to focus on - strange coincidences on this forum but I also work with young people and their families - often those in crisis - have taken a career break as we are out here for a year but am doing some volunteer work for a cancer charity while here and will be working with families affected by this disease. You and Madtram were talking about the importance of resiliance earlier and I totally agree - not just for young people either but for all of us, particularly the tramadol warriors on here - life like recovery is not linear - we all go through our ups and downs - you guys are going through good days and bad days and having to cope with all sorts of other rubbish such as family illness, painfule conditions, job and financial issues, family and frendship issues etc - you are all stronger than you know and you need to hang in there - these problems WILL NOT BE INSURMOUNTABLE if you stay OFF the trampoison. Love and respect to you all x

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by Ducky444, Feb 04, 2011
Dam tram I'm so sorry and hope for the best possible recovery for your mom, she sounds so wonderful!. So does your mom Nora, and I totally get the pre cleaning issue!!! No one could even clean my place unless I did that. I'm at day 20! A tiny bit less insane. Sleep is erratic. Cravings still strong thanks for being there, team.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 04, 2011
Please send good thoughts for our kitty Colette (aka The Kitten). She is clearly in pain. She is not getting any better, and after giving it a lot of thought, we are looking for a doctor to come to our home and help with the transition.

Today is day 30. I feel okay, just sad about my kitty. We never heard from my friend (the one who offered Larry a job whilst drunk). So I called her husband and talked to him about her problem. He was very responsive, and in full agreement. I told him we would be happy to help in any way we could. I feel bad for him and bad for my friend, but I think if it goes on any longer, her drinking could ruin her life. She has already had one DUI, I fear the next time might fatal. So, I hope it goes in the right direction. I realize now, that I am in recovery that I cannot have addicts around me. The chaos is too much right now...

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by billy201, Feb 04, 2011
I have been taking tramadol for over a year now and was started on 100mg per day, it quickly became 400mg per day and sometimes i was taking a few extra just to take away that tired feeling when i felt down.  I soon came to realise that tramadol was addictive after thinking i had plenty of tablets to do me over the weekend but i ran out on saturday meaning i had to go without on the sunday.

I felt awful and was pacing back and forth and even rang an out of hours doctor for a prescription which was refused point blank.  On the monday morning i collected my prescription and after taking it the flu like symptoms i was getting and the agitation started to fade, it scared me to know that i was addicted to this stuff.  My wife and i agreed i had to come off it.

I was advised by the doctor to lower my dose from 400mg to 200mg for 3 days then to drop to 50mg in the morning and 50mg at night for 3 days then to stop......FAIL!

I got a repeat prescription in and tried to do it a different way, by dropping 50mg per week.  This is my first week, day 7 of not taking any tramadol but im not sleeping at night, iv had to take 20mg tamazapam just to get some sleep.  Iv only got about 2nights worth of that left and no chance of getting any more, worried about what happens when they run out.  Got stiff joints my wrists really ache like iv been doing weights all day, iv got restless legs and a constant headache, bit of depression i think and a general not giving a crap attitude which is getting me down because im not usually like this!  Iv got a 10 week old daughter who i love to pieces but sometimes i just cant get motivated....i need to get this stuff out of my system....how long does it take??????????????????????????????????????

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by NoraTorious, Feb 04, 2011
Billy-welcome, you've come to the right place. I am on my 30th day without  the Tramapoison. Your best bet is cold turkey. Read some of the previous posts and you will see that the length of time to recover varies. What we can all agree on is that days 1-5 are hellish. I quit cold turkey, and on my 3rd day I admitted myself into a hospital to finish my detox. I was there for a week, but it was very hard. If you are detoxing at home, look up the Thomas Recipe for detox. It will help you a great deal.

It will very hard the next couple of days, but it will not kill you. You must be strong in your resolve. This stuff WILL kill you. The more you do the more risk you can have for seizures or seratonin syndrome. If you want to live, not exist, and if you want to be in the present for yourself and your daughter and family, quitting would be the way to go.

Good luck to you.

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by billy201, Feb 04, 2011
Thanks for the reply i started a new thread cos i wasnt sure if anyone would answer my post....thanks!  Any way you have just used words that i have been using alot lately to my wife....."exist" "in the present" "to live".  I kept saying to her that i felt as if i am just existing and not living, its a nasty drug....should be banned, il look up on the Thomas Recipe for detox,

I also forgot to mention that the doctor prescribed me sertraline, 100mg.  She give me this when i said i was feeling down coming off the tramadol but i dont know if its this that is keeping me awake now or the come down off the tramadol, so ah im in a right mess...

Started taking tramadol cos i messed my back up, protruding disk L5/S1.

Wish i knew what i know now before starting.

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by jillpaige, Feb 04, 2011
Don't know if this has been addressed in prior posts (dont have time to read through all of them), but do NOT take Tramadol, Ultram, or Ultracet with antidepressants!!!  It is contraindicated and can cause what is known as serotonin syndrome which can dangerously or fatally elevate your blood pressure.  It also has the potential to lower the seizure threshold.   Zoloft is an SSRI and should NOT be taken with Tramadol!!  I'm an RN.  Thanks.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 04, 2011
Thank you Jill. She is right, in fact that is what got me here in the first place. I was taking 8-10 50mg tabs a day, plus a 300mg XR tab. All pushed on me by my pain management Dr who was very sweet and understanding, telling my I am not a 'junkie' but 'chemically dependent'. As soon as I was out of the office she could not be bothered with me. Her office manager (she did not have a nurse) treated me like a junkie. The Dr refused to take responsibility. When my PC Dr found out how much I was taking (not including the extras I took), she freaked, I am taking effexor as well, so I was very lucky to have not had any seizures, or seratonin syndrome.

Mark my words, we are going to see a lot of bad news about Tramadol. Things we already know. It will a rude awakening for the Doctors!

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by rainallday, Feb 04, 2011
Hey Billy, welcome and I hope you'll be strong and get through kicking trams azz......I have a messed up c6/c7 from a rear end hit on me at a stop-light..I have no insurance at all...the headaches and neck/back pain i got/get can be debillitating. Tramacrap helped that, but the tolerance build up quickly ruined any benefits.....As with many here, you'll find life to be better finding alternative ways to treat pain...Hopefully all natural ways....
    I'm at day 30 something, I'll guess 33, I stopped cold turkey the end of january 2nd so the 3rd was day 1.....dam 31 day month messed up my count! doesnt really matter cause its over 30 days.....I had NO sleep aids or aids of any kind the 1st 10 days....Then realized I had melatonin in the cupboard..It helps if you havent tried it...I used/use it sparingly for fear of taking ANYthing I could get addicted to!!!!
    Youve got the best/nicest/educated/friendly/caring people here for support and may find yourself checking in here many many times per day for moral support!!!!

My stray kitty shelter tarp has held up this round of rain so thats a great thing...1 big stress relieved, and another huge stress relieved by my 20yr old kitty's flu improving from just 1 meds home treatment....she eats and drinks and breathes again thank goodness!!! It wouldve been near impossible to leave her alone for 3 straight 9 hour shifts this weekend, but now feel I can work without the paranoia and depression....
    My cat came from a line of cats of my sister's up in New Joisey, that several have lived to 21 and 22 years old!! Her friend visiting her currently just put to sleep their cat at age 23 !!! I couldnt believe it! I just didnt think cats got to such ages!!! Now I know better!!! When I got her in 1990 I thought maybe 10 years!!!! And to think I started smoking in 1990 also, after a break up with a fiance..and smoked ever since, so she's had 2nd hand smoke for 20 years! What do the doctor schmucks have to say about that? Sorry for the rant, I hate so called experts that tell the world crap, such as tramacrap not being addicting...anyways ....
  Saw 'the king's speech' last night and I'm convinced it'll win Best Picture Oscar......Should also win best actor best supporting actor best supporting actress.....Fantastic movie....Only have 1 nominee left to watch 'the kids are alright' but don't expect it to be better.....Any other movie lovers have any predictions?

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by NoraTorious, Feb 04, 2011
Rain, being a costumer and a historical clothing consultant, I am usually right on the mark with costume design. I need to look over the nominees.

In the meantime, I think we found someone to come over an take care of our kitty. It breaks my heart it has come down to this.

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by MyFreedom, Feb 04, 2011
Nora - I'm so sorry about your kitty. I know how you must feel as I had to do the same with one of my precious pets a little over 4 months ago and will be faced with the same decision again with a current pet in the near future. Isn't it hard enough to have to go through this tram-hell? I think it makes it harder because of our fragile emotions and hyper-sensitive feelings due to withdrawing from tram. When it rains it pours, I suppose. So hard. At the very least, you can be assured that you are doing the right thing for her.

When I had to have my little Daisy put to sleep back in September I made the decision to have her cremated. Some may think I'm nuts for having a ferret cremated, but I couldn't bear the thought of not having her with me any longer. She is now in her little pink urn in our living room.

I feel your pain. My heart goes out to you. ((((hugs))))

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by NoraTorious, Feb 04, 2011
Thank you MyFreedom. The Kitten (aka Colette) is gone. We will be getting the ashes, and her tiny paw prints on plaster. This has been a tough year and it is only february!

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by Ducky444, Feb 04, 2011
I'm so sad to hear about the animal babies conditions, but I'm glad they had you all with them through it all. It takes such courage to love. Cannot believe I made it another week!!! And worked all week. You are wonderful people! Thank you!

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by StephC28, Feb 04, 2011
billy201 - hey, welcome! This is really a great place to be if you're getting off of Tramadol. There are so many people on this site who can help you through this - so post specific questions and definitely read through other's posts...there is so much information here. I also just wanted to say, just because some of us did cold turkey, doesn't mean it's the "right" way to detox. Others on here have done very successful slow tapers (if you have enough pills to do that...). Do what's right for you and your body.

Rainallday - Thought the acting in King's Speech was spectacular...but the story...eh, seen it before (I know it's a true story and all...I'm just saying...we've seen that plot line where the king/wealthy/upper class/whatever person meets with the alternative/slightly out there "commoner" and the commoner changes the king for the better...) I'm a super harsh movie critic though, so don't mind me. I agree with you that it will win. What other nominees did you like?

Nora- so sorry about your kitten. I have no words...it just *****. Stay strong and breathe.

Ducky- yay! :)

Happy weekend all!

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by rainallday, Feb 05, 2011
Hey yall...Not 1 minute from getting up yesterday till now at 415am has it stopped raining....All night at work rain...No big problem just amazing not 1 single minute did it stop lol.....were at about 3 inches of rain...My feet got soaked early and stayed that way...Didnt care it took all concentration just to drive safely....anywho...

Steph I thought "Winter's Bone" was excellent...All the others to me were good, above average, but not 'spectacular' , still have to see 'the kids are alright'..Wondering why 'Toy story 3" was nominated???? I mean it was good, but...why not 'Dinner for Schmucks' instead lol?!  I will have to see 'Inception' again as I saw a bad copy the 1st time...With a 9 Imdb rating it makes me think it could win..If I'm rating, it was maybe a 7...Black Swan a 7..127 hours a 7...True grit mayyyybe an 8......King's Speech a 9....Social Network a 7.....The Fighter...hmmm 6 maybe?.....Winters Bone an 8....
Toy Story....lol....
   Can't wait to see some of the movies that best actor and actress were/will be in....I have "biutiful' "Blue Valentine' and 'The Town' waiting....Hope to predict them all within a week...
  NORA Ive seen 3 of the 'costume design' movies, Haven't seen "I am Love" and "The Tempest" yet....So far i 'imagine' Alice in Wonderland has an edge lol... True Grit and King's speech don't strike me as compelling, but i don't know costume design at all heh......I'm terribly sorry about your kitty.....It doesnt take much kitty talk like that for me to get all teared up so I'll just say I hope yall are ok......
   Hope everyone is pain free and symptom free and feeling good and strong.......
Congrats Ducky!



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by Ducky444, Feb 05, 2011
Thanks for the good words & it is raining all day here too!!! It's always great when you post! Hope you and the kitties stay as dry as you can! Nora I'm so sorry your baby is suffering. I had a cat "flash" long story on the name. He lived to be 21, I finally had to let him go. I was 21 when he came into life and he went through the 70&80s with me, I still miss him. My heart is with you!


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by DamTram, Feb 05, 2011
From the updated PDR (Physician's Desk Reference) on our TramaDear (CAPS used as emphasis by me)

Cautions: Do not prescribe for SUICIDAL or addiction-prone patients.

Adverse Reactions:  Development of serotonin syndrome including mental status changes, autonomic instability, neuromuscular aberrations, and GI symptoms reported. May impair physical or mental abilities.

Mechanism:  Centrally acting synthetic opioid analgesic; NOT ESTABLISHED mechanism of action. Binding of parent and M1 metabolite to µ-opioid receptors and weak inhibition reuptake of norepinephrine and serotonin.

WITHDRAWAL SYMPTOMS WITH ABRUBT DISCONTINUATION (eg, anxiety, sweating, insomnia, rigors, UPPER RESPIRATORY SYMPTOMS, diarrhea, piloerection and rarely, hallucinations).

Sorry, TramaVictims.  At least all of the reported withdrawal symptoms have made it into the PDR.  Unfortunately, the "Patient Counseling" portion only tells doctors to avoid taking TramaPoison with other drugs...nothing else.  

Vicodin's entry, however, tells doctors to, "Advise that drug may be habit forming; should only take for as long as prescribed, in amounts prescribed, and no more frequently than prescribed."  WHAT THE ****?

Also, the 'adverse reactions' for vicodin are MUCH milder than for Trama****: Lightheadedness, dizziness, sedation, N/V, constipation, rash, respiratory depression.

Lastly, it tells doctors to monitor VICODIN for TOLERANCE...but does not say the same for Trama****.  

I guess we still have a long road to redemption.

Thank you for your kind, kind words for my dear mama.  We will know more after Tuesday's PET scan.  I love you all, and grieve with you for your beloved furry friends.  It really does all happen at once...

But now we have the strength to deal.  I thank the heavens.

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by DamTram, Feb 05, 2011
And on a happy note...I'm down to 4.5mg Effexor/day.  No major side effects.

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by Ducky444, Feb 05, 2011
Excellent! Damtram you amaze! Day 21 for me, easing into life a little more today! I so long for the end and a" normal" day and night. So glad I have all of you. For the new folks you found the right place for sincere advice, someone to understand how you feel, and give unconditional support. Groups are good but this has been even better for me.

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by madtram, Feb 05, 2011
Nora, so sorry for the loss of Collette, my heart is with you.

DamTram, so glad the effexor withdrawal is treating you more kindly than the tramaexcrement.

Billy, at a week clear of tramadol, there should be minimal risk of serotonin overload, particularly if you had already been taking them together without problems.  Sounds like yet another doctor who doesn't understand the pharmacology of tramadol before prescribing it.

As for discontinuing the zoloft, of course you know how you feel, I would only mention that quitting both at the same time may lead to quite a drop in your serotonin levels until your receptors re-sensitize.

Zoloft can be quite speedy for some people when you start taking it but usually moderates after a week or two.  You may want to try taking it first thing so it doesn't exacerbate the insomnia.  If you do want off the zoloft, you could try 5htp or tryptophan which are serotonin precursors & some people also find them helpful for sleep.

When I was a fully paid up member of the corporate rat race, regular movies were one of my sanity savers but now we live in an area that is some distance from the only theatre that shows movies I would want to see, so I am in a movie time warp.  I have seen the King's speech & know many people love it.  I think that Geoffrey Rush is great at playing those quirky characters but I'm with Steph on the story line, I prefer characters & story lines that explore the grey in the life, where you can empathise with both sides of the dilemma.  Have seen 'the kids are alright' & loved Annette Bening & Julianne Moore's performances but wouldn't classify the movie as great although it was very watchable.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 05, 2011
Thanks to all the condolences. The Kitten (Colette) is gone, and we are so very sad. I did not sleep well last night, but I woke up feeling very alert, and not as foggy or sleep deprived as I have felt in the past. Went walking with my husband, and took a hot bath with Dr Teal's Lavender Epsom Salts. I have been to all our local stores looking for the lavender Batherapy, no luck. But this stuff definitely relaxed me.

Day 31. I do feel better, and I feel a change coming on, like I may be resuming to my 'normal' given state soon. Still pretty weak after about 1pm, but I am hoping for more strength as I exercise more.

We are very sad about losing our little girl. We called her 'The Kitten' because she never got very big. She was such a sweet, gentle loving little girl. She was originally my cat, but after my husband moved here and we married, the two of them really bonded. We both have kitten-shaped holes in our heart.

Rain, I am glad your kitty is doing better. I agree with the 'Alice' for costume design. You can NEVER go wrong with a Colleen Atwood designed movie. But sometimes Oscars are given to movies that have swept the votes, like 'The King's Speech'. So I am hovering around both. The designer for 'The King's Speech (Jenny something) is great with capturing British period looks. She did great with 'Sherlock Holmes'. I really have no desire to see 'Alice' but I have seen enough of the costumes (and Colleen is an idol of mine) to know they are great, they have that open-end fantasy factor that the academy likes, however, think back to 'Ghandi'.

In a few weeks we pick up her ashes and a little plaster casting with The Kitten's paw prints. For being a 10 year old kitty, her paws were so very small. I am glad she is free of pain, but I do miss her so.

My best wishes for all of you and your furry babies.

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by DamTram, Feb 05, 2011
Nora, your strength and acceptance during this time is more than laudable.  I heard something, recently, about love being stretchy...like a rubber band.  That when we lose a pet, friend, etc...we feel such guilt when finding joy in a new friend, as if we feel they've been 'replaced'.  But we know they haven't.  Love is stretchy, and you continue to love and to miss those you have lost..and to build with those yet to come.  I hope, one day soon, you and husband are ready to stretch your love for a new kitten...who most likely needs you very much.  

Rain, I'm so sorry for all of the RAIN!  More than 24 hours of heavy precipitation and darkness was new to me, and it was not pleasant.  I hope the sun comes your way, soon!!

Steph and Ducky -  you continue to support and inspire...thank you for continuing to come back, even on the good days!!

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by DamTram, Feb 05, 2011
Oh right..I meant to post because last night I went to dinner with a friend and had a martini, and then later had a beer on a date.  I've never liked alcohol, but am usually too embarrassed to not get SOMETHING.  Well, my Trama****-recovering body could not understand why I would do such a thing...and today my body and brain were back to Day 2.  SO GROSS.  I mean, I know that we know that alcohol actually IS poison...but, sheesh.  Apparently my tolerance for poison might be permanently at 0.  I can't say I'm sad about it.  GO LIVER!!

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by rainallday, Feb 06, 2011
Hey wow Damtram thats a trip because I have a bottle of cheap cabernet sauvignon that Ive wanted to open for some time (as yet another gift to myself for kicking the habit) but Ive somehow been too afraid to do so....I keep thinking I'll lose a whole day to hangover (I get them like noone I know)....I even bought a 2nd bottle at walmart (2.97 lol) to encourage myself and yet I can't do it...Maybe my inner sense is telling me not yet because of what you experienced..
Glad you didnt drink too much to find out!! One of these days I'll man up and drink some when I'm off the next day and we'll see.....I used to drink boatloads of beer but only have drank about twice in the last year.....I always hear red wind is good for you and I used to love cabernet....Oh well...

MadTram You MUST see more movies!!!! I hope you get the chance soon!!!! (I'd offer to airmail divx/xvid movie files on dvd but then I'd be submitting you to somewhat not legal downloads heheh)

Nora thanks and glad to hear opinions from someone in the know, hope you can catch all the movies too....

Day 34?? for me ...I feel strong and feel those difficult numbered days are behind me....Work feels normal, I fell asleep last night without anything and early for me at 6am....So I keep moving forward.....I think right at about the 1 month mark i felt 90%+ normal.....(I know the underarm sweats will last awhile yet)  Just need to quit cigarettes and a great new life unfolds!!!!(As he cowers in the corner)...Everyone here (I've said this before I think) should feel BRILLIANT for kicking this habit...Remind yourself how brilliant you are!....Sure life can Suck and for me often does, but I can always look at how brilliant I am for saying on Jan 2nd, "Thats it, no more tramacrap"....
There I go again babbling on...Just hope everyone here remembers how STRONG willed they are and have proven they can be! Alright enough already lol I'm out for the night, I'm hankering to play some battlefield 1942 online (One of my many vices) I'm terribly competitive and the game helps me blow off steam and gain adrenaline at the same time...
Can't wait to work delivering papa johns pizza tomorrow during the superbowl (not) lol....
Yall have a splendid and brilliant night!!

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by Ducky444, Feb 06, 2011
Maybe one of us will win a lottery!(random wish) Nora I'm so sorry to hear about your little one, you are handling the pain amazingly well and sober! Day 22-sleep was better still wake between 3-5 but I went to bed at 8 so that's really good. thank you all once more.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 06, 2011
I want to take a moment to tell everyone how thankful I am. Emily, your journal has become an amazing place for recovery. I know this must have been hard, even though it was a few years ago, I am sure you wondered if you were the only one experiencing the terrible side effects and withdrawals of Tramadol. But clearly, you are not alone. You have given a place for all of us to keep each other strong and inform one another about this poison. Also, we can provide support and advice. As I have said before, this has been better than any group I could go to. Why? Always acessible, everyone on here is coming off the same thing, and for me (because I am super sensitive to cigarette smoke) no smoking or having to deal with smoke! (nothing against my smoking fellow warriors, it is just my own fussy chemistry that makes me so adverse to it).

And everyone who posts here, you all have been very brave and very helpful. Even if you don't feel like you have, you have!!

Day 32 for me, and it is pretty good. I still wake up at 6 every morning, but I go to bed pretty early as well.

I had made a mention of my alcoholic friend a few posts back. I called her husband and talked to him. Told him all the things that went on in her drunken episodes. He knew she had a problem with drinking, she had a DUI in 2005, but instead of a wake up call, she rationalized it out (something I am very familiar with). Instead of going out to drink, she stayed home. Instead of vodka she drank wine. I remember when she told me the latter part of this, and I said, 'Oh, well then now you are a wino'. I played it off as a joke to her, but this rationalizing she was doing set off alarms in my head. So, her husband and I talked for awhile, I told him about my recovery, and that I could not have someone like her in my life right now because the chaos of the addict is not conducive to how I am mapping my life out. And her making all these promises to my husband and then ignoring follow up calls from him and myself is not cool. She needs help. I fear she will have another DUI and this time she is going to hurt more than a cement curb and a hedge. I also told her husband that we (my husband and I) were there to support him in any way possible and to stay in touch with us. Hopefully something will come of this for her sake. I put up with a lot of her BS in the last 5 years. Drunken phone calls where she would abruptly hang up on me, inappropriate behavior that made me uncomfortable, empty promises and proclamations. I put my foot down with her, and told her that she cannot call me or see me unless she is sober, as she says and does things she cannot follow through. I know that the only person that can change someone is that person him/herself. I can only hope it does.

Hope everyone has a terrific Sunday. Enjoy the superbowl, if you are watching (I am a baseball fan) and Rain, I hope you stay busy and get good tips delivering all those pizzas!!

Stay strong, and thank you all!

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by StephC28, Feb 06, 2011
DamTram - thanks for posting that info about Tram. Wow. I mean, WOW. I can't believe I put that **** in my body for so long.

I decided to drink some red wine the other night. I used to love the occasional glass of wine. When I started taking pills I couldn't drink because I'd just get too tired. But I figured it was time to give it a go. Nothing but good things to report - but I stayed at 2 very small glasses. And I've never been a drinker. So I feel safe in this area. I know there are some people who say - you must cut ALL drugs from your life if you've had a problem with one - but I just don't agree since I don't like alcohol enough to ever drink it too often. But I totally understand and respect those who decide to stop using ALL substances. Dam - you might just need to wait another week or so for the occasional drink. I really didn't want anything until after day 30.

Agree with Rain - I'm feeling pretty damn good on day 36 (rain, think you're on 35...:) So it definitely keeps getting better. Slept for almost 10 (10!!!) hours last night.

Love lazy Sundays...drinking coffee and watching music videos in the morning is among my favorite things...

AND the super bowl tonight!! She hasn't been on in a while, but Sweetstang is a Packers fan I believe...so this is a big night for her! And even though my team's been out for a while (pats) it's still football...which I love.

Be well all


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by NoraTorious, Feb 06, 2011
Steph, I used to be a big drinker, but I stopped since I was taking so much medication. I believe you should cut out what is making your life dangerous, and a glass of wine here or there is a total non-issue. But in my friend's case, to polish off a bottle of wine every night, not a good thing, especially if it is spilling into other people's lives. I did not mean to make any kind of statement about having to quit every vice there is. Everything in moderation is a good idea to me.

My Drs had concern that I would have a cross addiction. But our house is stocked with tons of liquor, all stuff I like and I have not touched a drop. I am scared too, and after what you and DamTram have experienced, I will probably wait a while longer for that one glass of wine or champagne, or liqueur.

Sweetstang, wherever you are I am thinking of you, and hope The Green Bay Packers do well!

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by StephC28, Feb 06, 2011
Oh Nora! I wasn't talking to you at all!! I'm so sorry if that's how I came off...I was just responding to DamTram and Rain and in general to some people's thoughts on addiction and substances...

For sure your friend sounds like she could use some help. And yes, I agree all things in moderation. I think many of us who see we have a problem understand the difference between a glass of wine now and then and popping 16 pills a day....

I hope your friend gets the support she needs. But as we all know...unless she wants to make a change, change will not come easily.


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by rainallday, Feb 06, 2011
Ok StephC, put down the bottle, and back away slowly....Noooo...I'm just kidding...I'm VERY glad your ok with occasional glass because I hate to think I could never enjoy a little wine now and then...Like tonight after work!!!

Nora sorry bout your friend the wino...She probably won't quit without intervention..From my experience alcoholics are a whole different breed, and almost impossible to reason with......

Hope everyone enjoys the superbowl..(good luck sweetstang, I'm pulling for the packers)

I'm about to head off to work with a bad headache....friggin sinuses!!!! Took bufferin, sudafed, and quercitin and nothing is making a dent...Often moving around and driving will help, at least I'm hoping it will...I never like delivering on big days and holidays, its a p.i.t.a.  but thats life...For some reason though after quitting tramacrap I always feel a little lucky to be able to work...And as much as I HATE working, that's a good thing....

Thanks everyone for great posts to read, its always helpful and wonderful to check in here!~

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by NoraTorious, Feb 06, 2011
Steph, no worries, I think I am just being a bit overreactive. I just feel weird being an ex pill popper telling someone that they have a problem, and she gave me that line and made me feel bad. But I am off the pills. I don't want anymore Tramadol especially after I realize how better my life is without it. I am sorry if I came off all touchy. My friend is one of those people that never asks for help, and thinks people who do are weak. So I know it is going to be tough to convince he she has a problem. I just hope she gets help before things get worse.

RAIN-thanks for being the comic relief. Now, I have the answer to all your Sinus issues. It is made by NeilMed, and it is called sinuflo. It is like a neti pot, but much easier. I have been having sinus problems since my late 20s and this has been my sole salvation.
All you have to supply is distiller water. The bottle and packets (which is just a mixture of salt and baking soda) are about $7.99, it lasts for a long time. You can buy it online as well. Check it out, you will feel great afterwards!



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by DamTram, Feb 06, 2011
Nora - I'm SOO glad you did your part to help your friend get better.  Like Rain said, it seems alcoholics have the hardest acceptance...since drinking is such a part of society.  Sometimes, though, an intervention is all that's needed...unfortunately, sometimes most effectively when coming from the place of employment.  I hope it won't come to that.

I hope Sweetstang is ok (and so glad her Packers won!)!  I know she disappeared last time bc of a relapse after 40 days...hopefully she will give us an update, soon!

Things people have said to me, since Tram Recovery began:
"It's like you're a completely different person" - Mom
"It's like you've come back from another planet" - Dad
"You're so happy and calm and cheerful, given what you've been through!  I'd never have known!" - Friend 1
"Your whole demeanor has changed...and you never flake on me, anymore!" - Friend 2
"It seems like you're ready to begin a journey!" - Therapist

Despite the nausea, sleepiness/insomnia, and GI symptoms...I love every minute of this no-Trama**** life.  We are SOOO lucky, guys!  I still have friends that have parents on this for chronic pain...but at least they've been warned.  Hope you have great Mondays, Warriors!!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 06, 2011
Oh, Dam, such good news! I heard my husband, say to his Mom that the comparison of the Tramadol-laden me, and the sans Tramadol me, is night and day. It makes me feel so happy to hear that. It is amazing we went around in these Tramadol fogs for so long.

I am just weak as a kitten. I am still going walking, but I feel like my body weighs a ton. I drag it around all day. Even though this kind of *****, it is better than the how I was feeling on this poison. I know this would pass, and I can live with this for the time being.

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by DamTram, Feb 06, 2011
just keep adding a minute a day to that exercise!  you're getting stronger with every sunrise!

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by rainallday, Feb 07, 2011
Ugh Nora, sinuflo does sound exactly like a neti pot....I like pot, but not neti pots...I've only tried twice, but havent mastered the nose flow thingy technique....My old kriya yoga teacher used to tell us we should do neti pot like25 years ago and I never 'got' it......My sister in Joisey does neti at times also and praises the results...She is an ex nurse so I believed her and bought a neti pot and packets...yikes did I fail....If I get a bad infection I'll try again..but probably not til then... I'll look up sinuflo to see if it's different..Thanks for the mention..Too tired right now after crappy superbowl shift...Very busy, but not very generous consumers......So glad to be off tomorrow....One thing since quitting is I notice That I can run out of energy quickly, like a 'crash' after work.....zombified...Not too worried really with the sleep amounts being on the light side....Just surprised at how hard it can be to get out of this chair!! BTW My computer chair is an old kids school desk, the kind with the 'leaf' on the right side built in...Weird right?? The mousepad and mouse sit on the leaf! Noone else ever has had the same setup lol....I got the chair at a thrift store for 5 dollars like 10 years ago and used it ever since..
I cant believe I actually game and browse this way, but I'm eccentric anyway so yippee.....
There I go rambling again...
Great quotes from people Damtram thats awesome to hear...Same with your hubby Nora thats great!
Now where are some of the other people I remember being here??
I hope noone has fallen back...Hang in there!!!!
Gotta go and do important stuff now, like watching movies, drinking coffee, laying in bed etc etc....

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by DamTram, Feb 07, 2011
"We are all broken together and that makes us less broken."  -  Allie Brosh

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by Ducky444, Feb 07, 2011
Ugh! Still not up to par, hate to complain: I am grateful to be alive, have a job, have a warm place to stay! But darn I want to feel better sooner than later. Day 23 just weird. Those strange electrical somethings are in my feet all night long they are scary and annoying. Went out to the store Sunday (superbowl shoppers everywhere) i was down right paranoid. Went out later with my family and I was better. I'm glad the packers won! Although honestly I'm not much of fan of sports, I just don't get why the big money goes there when it's needed other places I feel the same way about all celebrity.  Enough from the peanut gallery. Hope you are all recovering well and rapidly.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 07, 2011
Ducky, day 20-30 were pretty hard on me. Not half as bad as 1-5 but still rather difficult. I found it interesting that around day 27 I had the same (doubled over in pain) stomach cramps that Emily had. Things will take a turn for the better after your first 30 days. I have had others tell me the same and I am here to say this is true. Hang in there, you are doing fantastic!!!

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by gunitbot6, Feb 07, 2011
if you are a long time tram user , it will take you about 3 months to get your energy back to almost 100 percent.!

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by StephC28, Feb 07, 2011
Rain - you're the best! I was smiling when I read your post this morning on my way to work :) Hope your headache is gone. I've heard really good things about acupuncture for headaches (and all other things). I know it can get pricy, but apparently there's this new thing called community acupuncture? According to a friend: "It is based on models in China, where for many types of health situations, acupuncture is given several times a week. In community acupuncture, people are treated in groups, (like the clinics in China), and therefore the cost is reduced."

Usually it's about $25 a session. Anyway, worth looking into in your area perhaps?

Hope everyone is having a great day!

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by rainallday, Feb 08, 2011
Headache is now JUST starting to lesson...Time was the winner, everything else failed....Its my fault anyway for my diet...had chips and cheese before bed and know better...I'm pretty stubborn though and thought maybe it was the one in a 100 that I'd get away with it...
   Thanks StephC for the kinds words and suggestion...
Kinda slow in here, Hope that means everyone is doing well.....

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by kaz47, Feb 08, 2011
Hi everyone - day 29 for my husband life after tramadol - sleep is still very much an issue. The melatonin finally arrived in the post and he though he would give it a go - he took one tablet and it may have been coincidence (or not as I suspect) that it seemed to trigger a full on onslaught of RLS not disimilar to those he suffered in the first week of withdrawal. Have subsequently done some research online and it seems that in some people melatonin does aggrivate RLS. This symptom had generally got a lot better over the past week or so prior to taking the melatonin, although he was still getting it mildly and still is. I have read on here that days 24 -27 can be sticky for many people so it may be coincidence - just thought I would mention it! His body clock is all over the place at the moment and he is unlikely to fall asleep until around 2 or 3 am and then sleeps for about 5 hours - we are hoping that gradually sleep patterns will return to what is his normal ie bed at about 11 or 12 and waking up about 7 am. The good news he is not taking any medication at all - has decided after this fiasco that he will find other ways to deal with his back problem and has increased his exercise regime as in working outside for up to 8 hours a day - weather here not fantastic but he says being outside is a real mood lifter and I agree - lovely to see everything coming back to life after the winter!

Rainalday - cheesew before bedtime used to be a real nightmare for me in every sense of the word! A friend used to swear by lavender for headaches - she sufferd chronic headaches most of her life and used to use lavender oil and had dried lavender in her pillow etc. You have probably tried it already but it might be worth a go

Hope that all you tram warriors (and your families!) are doing well - haven't heard from some of the posters who were posting when we first discovered this site. Sweetstang, sheliz etc - hope you are all ok and life is good. Your posts were really helpful in the first days - thankyou!

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by Ducky444, Feb 08, 2011
Thanks Nora for the reminder of how tough 20-30 can be. Geeezee peeezee, I'm exhausted. I've been listening to Pema Chodron on getting unstuck she quotes her mentor (something like)"We are all like young children with scabies. We are old enough to know that scratching will make it feel better and not wise enough to realize that the scratching will make it spread and itch for longer". That sums up taking tram for me the immediate need overrides the wisdom and strength. Best to all,
Ducky

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by rainallday, Feb 08, 2011
Yeah Kaz cheese is a big no-no, I just hate that I'm so hungry at that time of day lol..I only mess up like that If I know I'm off the next day...Still, the idiot-child in me often wins out.....Proof that age doesnt always equal good behavior...However I don't give in to tramadope....Day 37 I think.....I slept like 7 1/2 hours and feel pretty solid, no headache cause the inner child was told NO to food after 2am....slept 6am -130pm...work today 4-5 till 1230.....
    Hey Kaz47 great to hear hubby is still strong!! Thanks for the lavender idea, I will definately try it.....I have several oils but hadnt heard of that....Peppemint oil helped me some last evening...
    Funny looking back at days 1 until now, and how HARD it was/is to focus well and remember things..I have a notepad that I write errands and grocery lists on, because I have no chance of remembering yesterdays or last weeks good ideas.....Hey gunitbot thanks for mentioning it can be 3 months to regain all of 'normal', I find that may very well be true....I worry that several here may have fallen...I hope not....In the early stages I know it was extremely helpful to read from veterans like Madtram who've been through it already and succeeded, i hope the vets here keep posting encouragement...I may feel groggy at day 37 but nothing like the bloody hell of days 1-10, and even though life looks like an obstacle course right now, I take it 1 day at a time...In other words, never give up people!!!!
  Gotta get ready for work...Love and light to all the warriors here!!!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 08, 2011
I know Ducky, it was rough. I am glad you and Kaz47 are getting through those days. But honestly, you WILL turn a corner after day 30.

The things I am having the most trouble with are no energy and cold feet. My feet are always freezing, so I have to wrap them in a blanket or electric blanket. I have small bursts of energy, which I take advantage of by doing chores. Did anyone experience a sore throat? I wonder if it is withdrawal, or a legitimate cold/flu thing. I bought a big box of Emergency-C and I have a glass of that 1x a day. It gives me a bit of energy, and clears my head. But I have been too exhausted to go walking, and the weather has turned a bit here. In lieu of not walking, I am doing a bit of cleaning, folding and putting away clothes, washing dishes, etc. So I am keeping active in one way or another.  Also, I am as bloated as a poison toad. Anyone have bloated issues? I suppose it goes hand in hand with the GI stuff I am ezperienxing.

I hope all is well, would love to hear about other people's progress.


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by NoraTorious, Feb 08, 2011
Ezperenxing=Experiencing.

Yes, Kaz, is on to something with the lavender. I have a lavender filled face mask and it does help with my sinuses. Have a good work night, Rain.

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by rainallday, Feb 08, 2011
Hey I recounted, it day 36 not 37....I shouldve done a counter Nora!!!!
     The sore throat thing Ive had several times, I think wd's dry us out, have to stay hydrated....And Yes Ive had bloating also, can scare me good if I go into a big yawn, like I might accidentally blow up!!! Helps remind me to keep up with my probiotics (Jarrow-dophilus)..Also when Ive been hungry, I'm REALLY hungry and have to try not to devour like a wolf when I eat....I'm slim, but I should look like Orson Welles !! Also since its been so cold here this winter I allow myself the (crazy) luxury of eating Reeses big peanut butter cups during work with coffee..They have helped with energy and mood while driving, and havent hurt too bad like they usually would lol...I had the cold feet thing a few weeks ago but it went away...I accept that any and all weird symptoms are from wd's...
    Ok I must...get.....ready....for......work.....noooooooo......Don't want to....must....oh yuck it *****, thank goodness being outside helps so much...If spring would just hurry the heck up and get here!!!! We're supposed to get snow yet again here wednesday night and thursday, I'm off (yay) and will have camera ready if it does snow..Someone punch Al Gore for me.....(btw) I take grocery lists to work and shop DURING my shift lol....(luxory of being a driver) Other drivers just hate that I do that, and still outdeliver them....Too bad for them, I'm a warrior!!!!!

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by MyFreedom, Feb 08, 2011
Good afternoon

rain.... Expecting a little snow here too. I think I'm just a couple of hours north of you in Charlotte. I'm totally ready for spring too be here also. This unusually cold winter is just plain awful.

Nora.... Had cold feet for the longest time. It was sooo frustrating. The entire time I was on tram (almost 8 years) it seemed I was always hot...rarely ever cold. Now that I'm tram-free I'm cold quite often with my feet being the worst. I would've thought that (for me) that I wouldn't have the cold problem anymore since I'm close to a year tram-free now, but I'm beginning to wonder if I have a thyroid problem going on (hypothyroidism, perhaps). I read the symptoms and I have most of them. Being cold or unable to maintain body temp as I once could is just one of the symptoms. Yay... I suppose I get to have my doc test for that at my next physical. I recall someone else having the same issue several pages back in the journal, but never thought much of it until just a couple of weeks ago. I suppose it's possible that tram has wrecked my thyroid function. blah

I agree....it's been a little slow around here. I hope all are doing well. I know someone had asked about SheLiz.... Isn't she on vacation visiting with her daughter? Didn't she say that she'd be gone for a month or so??

Gotta do some house work....

:)

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by ImDONENoMore, Feb 08, 2011
Good evening everyone!

Wow there's been a lot of activity here.  I'm still around, still doing really well.  Giving up tramadol was the BEST decision of my life, in case any of you who are still struggling and questioning your decision to quit - DON'T!  It will be the best decision of your life too, you'll see!

And btw, myfreedome - you are correct - sheliz is in Vietnam with her daughter until the end of the month.  She said she would try to check in but if not, she'd be back upon her return.  I really hope she's having a great time.

And I can tell all of you, from what I've read about your symptoms, YES, YES, and YES!!!  All normal.  The dry throat?  Yes - in fact, I had trouble actually talking for a while, it was really weird.  And my voice sounded different for a couple of months (my husband calls it tramavoice, I guess not really "clever" but certainly spot on!).  And my sister-in-law, who is still on this poison and in complete denial about what it's doing to her, she sounds so strange when I talk to her.  Her voice is really husky, scratchy, so the throat thing is definitely common.  And I'm sure it will get better with time, as it did for me, so have hope!  And GI issues?  YES!  Those were with me for the first few weeks, went away entirely, returned about two months later, lasted a few days, and are no longer around.  So have hope for that one too as it does go away!

So I just wanted to let you all know as one of the "veterans" of this thread, that life will continue to get better the further out you get.  I've done a lot of research, specifically on opiate and benzo withdrawal syndrome, and post acute withdrawal syndrome, and the only thing I can say as far as what I got from the material I've researched, is TIME is your most valuable ally right now.  Of course, I think inherently, as addicts, we don't like that answer (I certainly didn't!).  We want instant gratification (which I believe is what got many of us into the mess in the first place right?) and it just doesn't work that way.  Time, patience and faith.  So please, keep going - you are all doing SO well and for what it's worth, I'm so proud of everyone.  Keep coming here and keep posting - getting all of your feelings out right now seems to be key to successful recovery.  Venting is a MUCH better way to cope than taking some stupid pill - especially tramapoison.  It is by far the WORST drug out there (worse withdrawal for me and I've tried all the opiates and stopped them with only a few days of discomfort) so remember that when you're struggling - that what you're doing right now takes every bit of strength you have in you, as I'm sure you all already know that.  But keep the faith my friends because it does, and it will, get better for everyone.  TRUST ME!!

Life is good, tram is out, and HOPE has returned.  You guys are amazing.  :)  p.s. and I also wanted to say to our members here who recently lost their best friend (their furry friends) how sorry I am for you.  Losing a pet is such a devastating loss and I understand only too well your grief.  Honor and cherish those friends in your memories and they will be with you, in your heart, forever.

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by ImDONENoMore, Feb 08, 2011
Oh yes, I also just wanted to share the post below that I sent to another member here a while back that I thought might be helpful to some of our newbies:

===========================================================

First, keep your expectations very low for feeling better too quickly.  You have to be okay with not being okay for a while.  Next, there's the thomas recipe or the amino acid protocol that helps so many of us as it includes suggestions for the different vitamins and supplements you can take to help ease your withdrawal.  I waited a couple of weeks (not on purpose, I just didn't know about this stuff in the beginning) before I began taking a daily multi-vitamin, fish oil tablets, st. john's wort (to help ease my depression as I did have some issues with that), a b12 sublingual tablet (this is great for energy) and I also kept valerian root on hand for the anxiety and began taking melatonin for the sleep issues (which worked great for me - better than the OTC sleep aids in my case).

The next thing you might want to do is be sure you have a lot of clean and comfy clothes on hand because night sweats (or in my case, all the time sweats!) can become bad and having something warm, clean and comfy to change into helped my mindset (so did making sure I had clean linens on my bed because I spent A LOT of time in bed in the beginning).  I also started eating bananas shortly before bedtime as it helps with the restless legs that can occur because of their potassium content.  Some members found great relief with a product called Hylands Leg Cramps although I never tried this (I found out recently that it's the Leg Cramps version you need, not the Restful Legs kind).  And then it's a good idea to stock your fridge with comfort foods - I wasn't really able to eat in the beginning, so I lived on yogurt and ginger ale, orange or apple juice and bananas at first, but was then able to move on to stuff like chicken soup, saltines (no salt added kind), rotisserie chickens, basically just bland food (think hospital food! lol).

Lastly, I found hot showers using epsom salts as a scrub helped enormously with the anxiety.  There were some nights I took up to 3 showers just to help ease the anxiety and that helped enormously.  Baths with epsom salts are even better (I'm just not a bath person) - the epsom salts are important as the magnesium in the salts helps draw out toxins from your skin (your largest organ) so that assists in getting those nasty drug toxins out of your system.  And one other thing I did was get A LOT of movies ready so I had something to do when I wasn't sleeping - just watching movies or mindless TV made for a great distraction when you just can't stand the anxiety and need something to distract yourself.

Lastly try as hard as you can to keep a positive attitude.  What you're doing is hard, but it is SO worth it so remember that when your struggling.  You CAN do this!!!

===========================================================

Okay everyone - just wanted to share this info with you - hope you're able to find something helpful from this.  And if you're not sure, the thomas recipe and the amino acid protocol can be found on the forum for substance abuse on the medhelp website.  It's on the bottom right hand corner of the page.

Good luck to all of you - I will continue to cheer all of you on!!!  :)

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by DamTram, Feb 08, 2011
Thanks to all who returned for updates!  It's so great to hear that life keeps getting better.

I got into a PhD program at UCLA, and in the same hour my mom was confirmed to have cancer.  I have no idea what's going to happen next.  Being able to be a rock for her, though, while the rest of my family goes bonkers....feels amazing.  She's been my rock my whole life, and if I were on Tramadol...no way could I be what she needs me to be right now.  I'm thankful for that.

Also, I am 38 hours Effexor free!  I'm hoping the swishing in my head gets better, and not worse.

Hope you have a good shift, Rain!  Nora and Ducky, I hope you feel even better, soon!

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by ImDONENoMore, Feb 08, 2011
Hi damtram,

Congrats on the acceptance into the program at UCLA.  WOW!

And I'm so sorry about your Mom.  I know how difficult it is to care for your Mom, but you are absolutely right.  You will be able to provide her all of the support she's going to need now and that is huge.  I wish you much luck and peace during this difficult time.  I remember as I took care of my Mom too, so I'll be praying for her and for you.

And congrats on quitting the effexor - that is so great!  And it will get better, like with everything else, it will just take some time.

I'll be thinking of you.  So glad to hear about the PhD program, you should feel really proud of yourself (as I'm sure you do!)  :)

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by madtram, Feb 08, 2011
Damtram, that's so great about your PhD place & so sad about your mom.  When will you know more about her prognosis?

That's super impressive getting off the effexor so quickly.  I had the electric brain shocks during withdrawal but swishing sounds much worse.

It seems that long term tram use can contribute to hypothyroid, particularly in women who are also in the perimenstrual phase when all hormones are prone towards chaos, (entropy being the natural state of the universe even without tramadol's intervention).  So worth getting a full thyroid panel done if symptoms persist.



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by Ducky444, Feb 09, 2011
Mad tram so very sorry about mom, if she's anything like you, which i do not doubt, she'll do all in her power to win.  Also congratulations on the PhD program wow!!! Very cool!

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by Ducky444, Feb 09, 2011
Sorry I meant dam tram!!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 09, 2011
DamTram-congrats on the PHD program. And, I am sorry that good news is peppered with not-so-good news. But cancer is not a death sentence. My father was diagnosd with melanoma in 88, and my Mom was diagnosed with non-hodgkin's lymphoma in 2006. I am happy to say they are both going strong. So while some things about modern medicine suck (see:Tramadol) other things can be good.

I know a lot of you are getting off of effexor, but for me, that is one med I chose to stay on. It is what kept me going through this w/d. I have tried to go herbal for my depression but it did not work. It has been a long time since I have felt this good, and I know that getting off Tramadol and being on effexor has been instrumental in this. My only issue with effexor is that I must take it as a gel capsule (the coated tablet makes me violently ill). It may not be the most perfect anti-depressant, but it does work for me. And I have been on almost everything. I look forward to eventually removing other meds I am taking. The Tramadol, for me was the most important. I have no desire or craving for that garbage.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 09, 2011
Also, thank you, I'mDone for your post! Re:Baths-I was unable to find the Baththerapy soak in lavender, but I did find some lavender Epsom salts made by Dr Teal's. They have been very helpful in my recovery. Whilst soaking, I scrub them into my skin. It helps relax me and quiet down my pounding heart.


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by Sweetstang, Feb 09, 2011
Hi all-

Day 38.

Haven't been online as much lately. Starting as a volunteer for Lost Dogs of Wisconsin here and spend a lot of time on Facebook and dog shelter rescue pages searching/matching up lost dogs.  So its been keeping me busy and occupied.
Also been busy here with the Blizzard we got last week that dumped about 1-2 feet of snow and now that thats all cleaned up, its a chilly 3 degrees here with a windchill of -15, but very Sunny!   And also pretty happy about the Packers win at the Superbowl!

Been kinda draggin a little bit, but due I think mostly from the headaches. Been finding myself taking Excedrine to "substitue" the trams, and doing the same thing, taking more and more often. I've backed off a bit  and actually ran out of it.  Haven't picked up anymore yet.  Have just had really bad headaches and often as sick and disturbing as it sounds, wish (as I see so many patients at my job) come to the ER after falling-(typical this time of year from the ice), and right away given something for pain.  I'd rather break a bone, just to get pain meds to rid myself of this constant head pain?  How disturbing is that?  Just been battling these headaches for years and am sick of it, want to start a family, but the constant headaches and stress of the fact that were broke and our stupid refinance hasn't gone thru yet(started this process in Sept !!!) and just low energy to do anything! And now I am just more aware of other aches and pains, my back/neck for one and the annoying Heel spur I have on my left foot. Took a cocktail of 2 Execedrine and 1 tylenol yesterday and my headache had finally subsided, and well has still been ok(knock on wood) ever since! Hoping this new trend continues. Trying to remind myself to stay hydrated and eat when I'm hungry, esp at work..not 3 hours later.  Well I guess thats it for now. It's almost time for lunch and have a few other things to get done.

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by Sweetstang, Feb 09, 2011
Hi again.

Just wanted so say thanks for listening. I had 2 appointments scheduled with my therapist but due to inclement weather I had to reschedule! I see her next week Finally!! Thanks again and have a great day everyone!

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by DamTram, Feb 09, 2011
Ducky, Nora, Mad, and ImDONE:  Thank you so, so, so much for your kinds words...coming here and seeing your responses make me feel like I can overcome any challenge, and that there are people out there putting out so much positivity for my dear mother.  It was definitely a heaven-send to get good news on such a devastating day...even for my mom and dad.  We all went to the pulmonary specialist today, who isn't convinced the growth in her lungs is cancerous at all!  He's trying her on 12 days of antibiotics, and then if it's the same size...a biopsy.  Thank you, Nora, for sharing the story of your parents...you are so right.  There are just so many advances, and so much hope.

In terms of the Effexor, I felt I was put on it unjustly (by the worst Psychiatrist, ever...who really should've been figuring out that it was the Tramadol that was causing the anxiety and depression) and that instead of trying something else when it didn't work...he doubled the dose.  I was only on it for 2 months, and have been feeling SO great since getting of Tramadol...that I was eager to get off of everything, feeling that I was ready to see who I was...drug free.

I was on Cymbalta and Lorazepam for 2 years, and I'm thankful for the difficult time they got me through.  Unfortunately, damage was done to my liver from the Cymbalta (this was way before Tramaggeddon)...and it ended up causing symptoms of Fibromyalgia.  

I've just been having success with the 5htp and GABA and Valerian, so it was the right thing for me to do.  By no means do I think that anyone for whom it's working should get off of it.  Unfortunately, that just wasn't the case for me.  It turns out that my body and brain are EXTREMELY sensitive to chemicals (no wonder I never liked alcohol much!), and I'm finally beginning to understand how different things can affect my entire day and night (sleep).  I can't even drink coffee, anymore!  Today, what with all of the stress, I let myself buy a Cola (I love the taste...), but my heart was pounding afterwards, for hours.  Even after the calming, good news.  On the plus side, I'm able to benefit from mild things like GABA and 5htp...so I'm just going to shut up, now.  

The only reason I was proud of getting off of the Effexor is because I was told by all counselors and medical professionals that it is the hardest to get off of without the discontinuation syndrome, so I'm just relieved to be having Mushy Brain/Wiggle Eyes instead of full-on brain-zaps.  Again, I'm currently on involuntary medical leave...so it was just the right time for me to wean off.

Sweetstang - CONGRATS ON DAY 38!!!  I know we were worried that you'd gone the other way, so I am SOOOO relieved!  I'm so sorry about the headaches...are they migraines?  Have you seen a neurologist for them?  I just know there are so many conditions that can cause chronic headaches, and you SHOULDN'T have to feel so guilty about seeking relief for them.  I totally relate to the broken bone, thing.  I used to wish that, during the last year of full-body pain.  There are options, though, so I hope a doctor will help you sort through them.

About hypothyroidism:
I have a hunch that it creates a lot of the chronic fatigue and chronic pain that led us, especially the females, to end up on Tramadol (both prescribed and not)...I would venture to bet that its existence preceded Tramadol usage, and that Tramadol (given that it obliterates Vitamin D, which supports a healthy thyroid) made it even worse.  I take thyroid hormone, and I truly believe that it has helped in recovery...across the board.  ANYONE with fatigue, depression, anxiety, weight gain, chronic pain, and/or lack of homeostasis should DEFINITELY hook up with an Endocrinologist.  Mine told me that people who are hypothyroid need levels that are HIGHER than the normal person, if they are to feel normal.  Most PCP's don't know this, she said.  Definitely get your Free T4 and TSH checked if you are still having those symptoms.  Poor thyroids.  =(

Thank you all, again, for your constant support and encouragement.  I really don't know what I would've done/would do if I couldn't come here, every day.  All my love.

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by DamTram, Feb 10, 2011
Hope everyone out there is well!  I'm not sure I've ever experienced so much quiet on here.  =)

I got clearance to return to work, tomorrow.  For the first time in a month.  I'm petrified, but hope to report good news.  Me...leading 5th graders in learning all day...post Tram...fingers crossed.

4 days off of the Effexor.  Brain is swishing, but not zapping.  5htp is amazing.  

<3

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by rainallday, Feb 10, 2011
I've just finished watching season 3 of "celebrity rehab". Wow amazing to watch people withdrawing. Unlike us here though, they had alot of people and group support. I just had emails and this forum. Still some of them were hardcore addicts on meth and coke and alcohol. I cried alot watching their stories, especially when mckenzie phillips had to put her old blind dog to sleep, I balled my eyes out sitting next to my old blind angel kitty...I'll never put her to sleep though so I felt ok about that part.
  The wine I drank last night was excellent for being so cheap, and amazingly I had no hangover headache today. So that experiment went well. Made me feel normal, though I don't drink much anyway, and probably won't again for months.
  Glad your off the effexor Damtram, keep it going!!!
Sweetstang perhaps certain foods cause your headaches, maybe try no cheese for a couple days and see what happens, I hope you find relief soon!
  Everyone have a great evening!

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by StephC28, Feb 11, 2011
It is so quiet! There have been no new people in a while...

CONGRATS on the PhD program Damtram!!!! :) And good luck teaching on your first day back. I found out quickly that I was a better teacher (even during the second week of WD) than I ever was on Tram....sending positive vibes your way....

I'm on the morning of day 41 (if my counting is correct...rain, you keep throwing me off! :) 2nd of Jan was day one...Jan has 31 days...so I'd be at day 30 on the last day of Jan...which means every day in Feb is 30 + whatever day it is...the 11th today...41...am I totally wrong?? I'm an English teacher, not a math person!! :)

I've been feeling pretty good all week, though still not a ton of energy mid-afternoon.

I'll write more this weekend...just wanted to say a quick hi!

Hope everyone is doing well.

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by ImDONENoMore, Feb 11, 2011
Hi stephc28 - yup - day 41 (I double-checked the calendar for you!) - SO CONGRATS!!

Yes, it has been quiet here - I hope that's a good thing!

Stay strong and keep smiling.  :)

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by DamTram, Feb 11, 2011
Thank you, Steph and Rain!!  I'm so glad you guys are doing pretty flippin good! =)

YOU GUYS.

When I went to pack my lunch at 5:30am, DO YOU KNOW WHAT I FOUND IN MY LUNCHBAG after a month of not using it??

FOUR TRAMS IN A BAGGIE!!

I yelped and threw them across the room, and started to go do something else.  My brain started being like, 'Well, I could take them over the weekend...' at which point I realized that I could throw them in the toilet and flush them.  I did so, immediately.

IT WAS SO SCARY!!  It took an hour to get my pulse back down.  SHEESH!

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by rt35630, Feb 11, 2011
I'm so glad you are all still here! I looked for recent activity this morning and couldn't find any, so did not know how to get back!

I'm in the morning of day 2. I have been on an uphill/downhill ride with a taper program, and especially here at the end, when my partner cut me to two pills a day and I was miserable, I decided to have a good nights sleep and took the last four at the same time.

Right now, for me, the insomnia and restlessness is the kicker. I can deal with an upset stomach and generally feeling out of sorts. I'm not in any pain, per se.

A few weeks ago, in celebration of having more money, I bought a 1989 Cadillac Brougham to play with and fix up. It is actually in really good shape - I haven't driven my 2003 Taurus since! I took it out yesterday meaning to take a drive in the country, but we had a snowfall, and I did not want to risk taking a hulking rear-wheel-drive car out and getting stuck. I drove around town. It was a good passtime.

Anyway, I have not been around for a few weeks, but I will be now! Will keep everyone posted.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 11, 2011
RT! So good to hear from you! The sleeping (or lack thereof) is very tough. But give it time, and perhaps try some Valerian or Melatonin. That might help. Everyone's recovery is different, but keep in mind the possibility of feeling crummy. Vitamins help, to be sure. I am taking EmergenC (and now I am having it more than 1x a day) multivitamin, and B complex in the morning, and valerian, melatonin, hylands calms, fish oil, and GABA at night.

Tomorrow I visit my salon to get my eyebrows done. Something small to pamper myself. My esthetician and hairdresser are good friends of mine, and I know they will be pleased that I am Tramadol free. My hairdresser has been begging me to 'get off this stuff and live your life', so I know she will be glad to hear the news.

I am looking forward to Monday. My husband and I are planning a low budget Valentine's day adventure.

Speaking of news, my husband and I are weeping tears of joy for Egypt. One commentator said,  Now, 'everything is possible' Yes. Oh yes, I agree! Freedom from opppression opens the door wide to possibilities.

Nice to hear from Sweetstang and Steph. Rain, glad you are doing well, Madtram, thank you for your wisdom, and DamTram, I am so glad you are returning to your kids, and were able to look the tramadragon straight in the eye and destroy it!

Best wishes to all! <3


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by DamTram, Feb 11, 2011
RT, you finally did it!!!!!  Yayyyyy!  I've been reading your posts a long time...CONGRATULATIONS!!  I'm so glad you're not in any pain.  PLEASE let us know if we can help you in any way...

STAY STRONG!!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 11, 2011
Oh, BTW it is day 37 for me, and this has been a good day so far!

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by rt35630, Feb 11, 2011
This afternoon my Partner brought me a drink called "DRANK." I got in my car and was going to take a ride, and after that stuff kicked in I had to come home. I slept for a half hour. Hyland's Restless Legs did not help much, if any.

Randy

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by NoraTorious, Feb 11, 2011
RT, you might want to give the Hylands time to build up in your system. Things I started to take 3 weeks ago that did nothing for me are now beginning to be effective. I thought that would never happen. I felt like Teflon. Keep up the good work, we are here for you!!

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by rt35630, Feb 11, 2011
I've been watching "Driving Miss Daisy" in snippets today. Every time an emotional segment comes on I cry. Not that I am ammune, but it was happening every time! I guess that is part of WD?? I am not going to worry unless it makes me depressed!

Randy

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by NoraTorious, Feb 11, 2011
Randy, I am usually a weeper, WD made it worse. So it's normal. I think everyone here has a crying story to tell. Just keep up the good work. Move forward as much as you can each day, until it seems like the only way to go is forward. You CAN and WILL get through this.

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by rt35630, Feb 11, 2011
Thanks...every time I think I want relief from the detox I just need to remind myself how much I hate being controlled by this crap! The only way is to stay away from them!

Randy

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by Ducky444, Feb 11, 2011
I so hate to tell you this but I relapsed Thursday I took a 50mg pill divided in 1/4's and took pieces throughout the day. I know, I suck. My big fat excuse is I was so tired at work I couldn't do my job and I couldn't leave. I Found 2 trams in my desk at work. It was almost like I didn't even think I just divided one into 1/4s and took a piece. I didn't really feel anything Other than i stopped feeling like i was walking through mud & I made it through the day and slept last night for first time in over three weeks. So I'm back to square one. I haven't started terrible WD symptoms yet. I figure any minute now. I'm sorry to disappoint you I know it's awful. I don't want to be an addict burdened with this drug forever. I'm determined to do it again. I have got to find away to help the fatigue. I had forgotten how bad I felt before the tramodol due to the autoimmune disease. But I really can't go back to the horrible full blown 4-6 or more a day just  to get through a day. I'm trying again. Hope you all don't hate me too much.

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by NoraTorious, Feb 11, 2011
Ducky, hate you? NEVER!! You are a human being! These things happen. I am not sure what I would do if I was staring down the barrel of one of those little pills. You need to be gentle with yourself. It is okay. The fact you are wanting to go back is a good sign. I advise the sublingual B-12 and definitely EmergenC. I am drinking it 2x a day and it is giving me more energy. I really don't know how some of you do it, working and detoxing at the same time. I could never do that. You made it this far, I know you can do it again.

Please take care of yourself. I just want to know you are okay. <3

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by StephC28, Feb 11, 2011
OH DUCKY!! PLEASE don't beat yourself up over this!!!! You can and will get back on track. It's a hard road we've chosen...I didn't think I had a problem a couple years ago when I quit and so I went back to using. Good news? You probably won't go through WD in the same way you did 3 weeks ago. I could take them on and off for a couple months after I quit with no WD. So just take a deep breath, forgive yourself, and get back on the path. I support you 100% and believe you can absolutely put this behind you. But guilt is a useless emotion. Don't allow it a place in your life!!! I want to write more, but am running out now. Just wanted you to know that I'm thinking of you!!

and Randy....YAY!!! So happy for you!

I'll write more tomorrow y'all.

Stay strong!

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by ImDONENoMore, Feb 11, 2011
Ducky - Do NOT beat yourself up for slipping a little.  It happens and there should be no shame with that.  You've gotten back up, dusted yourself off and are moving forward.  That's all that matters.  Period.  :) p.s. and that makes me feel very proud and inspired.  p.p.s. and I too was SO thrilled to hear about the change in Egypt.  Finally!

Stay strong everyone - it will keep getting better.  :)  and Randy - so great to see you find your way back.  i didn't put two and two together this morning but i have now and it's so great to see you here again!  day 1 and you are on your way!  woohoo!  CONGRATS to you! :)

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by rt35630, Feb 12, 2011
I am glad I don't have any pills laying around, and glad my father keeps his hidden (he takes one or two a day), because if I found even one, I would take it and not worry about it! Of course, it wasn't that long ago that 10 a day was an improvement. I've taken as many as 8 pills at a time, but usually it was four or five. Damn...I hate this not being able to relax, sleep, etc. On the other hand, it isn't like it is unbearable, but it really, really *****. I hate this drug. HATE it!

Randy

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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
Ducky - I can't believe the Trama**** hunted you down on the same day as me!  I know that if I'd found those pills midday, when I was crashing, instead of at 5:30am...I would not have been able to flush them.  

I promise, promise, promise that 1 50mg pill will not send you back to the beginning.  You might feel ickier (than usual) the next couple of days, but nothing like those first days of withdrawal.  I just hope that you got/get rid of the 2nd pill.  The problem with Tramadol (moreso than the other opiates), again, is that Ecstasy/MDMA-type rush-and-crash that gets us to take more...and more...and order online...etc.  It sounds like you really needed some sleep, and I'm so glad you got it...because I really think 1 good night can help to push through a couple more weeks of these WD's.  Hopefully you're feeling strong from the rest, and listen to all of us about not beating yourself up.  Only love for yourself will give you the strength that you need.

Randy - Cry it out!  Those tear-ducts have been blocked for a looong time.  Let 'em roll!

Today was Day 25, and Day 5 for Effexor.  I went back to work, GABA sublinguals at the ready, heart racing until I was with my students.  While I was gone, they moved 10 of my students to different classrooms...and are going to keep them there.  While I miss them horribly (they took the highest performing students, obvs, since Standardized Testing is in 3 weeks and they wanted those students NOT with the sub...), having 15 students for the rest of the year is going to be like a spa day, every day.  They won't let me tutor after school or on Saturdays anymore, either...so teaching/life post-Tram will not be so difficult, after-all.  One coworker was hesitant to hug me today and said, 'Are you suuure you're better?' like I was so mentally ill before that it might be contagious.  Drugs are bad, you guys, but if this hadn't happened to me...I'm not sure that I would've ever really been able to feel/appreciate what HAVING clarity of mind/emotional control feels like, otherwise.  Can't NOBODY take me down, now.

I went on a first date tonight to a comedy club (full disclosure, I'm in Chicago...so the scene is huge, here), and I was in the front row and falling out of my chair and crying with laughter for almost 2 hours.  You guys.  After 6 months of Trama-Mc-Not-Laugh, it feels sooo good.  Go find some stand-up.  For serious.  

I'm so glad we are here for each other.  I love you guys.



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by rainallday, Feb 12, 2011
Ducky I hope you havent done any more since thursday, and If it was me I wouldnt start the day count over either..Yes you slipped up, ok, now get back on that horse! Look at your cats, sit with them, try to get strength from them.
Everyone here is rooting for everyone else without the luxory of seeing them face to face, so you have to imagine we are all in the room with you telling you to be strong!!!! Please don't give up. Drink a 5 hour energy drink or google natural energy supplements..you can find ways to boost your energy and mood, I know you can.
      Randy welcome and I hope you find the strength to win this battle. You can get alot of support here. Good luck! remember google is your friend when searching for answers!
   I'll leave now because I need to go to bed, and because I've erased 2 very long paragraphs about the lows and highs evryone experiences during the quitting. I get too sappy, and want to make sure people here are inspired to be strong and fight hard for better living. So I'll just say Expect the worst, and be ready to deal with whatever comes, and look for ways to become better and then start expecting to be better. Chart your path and stay on it!
hope everyone here feels better and has a great weekend

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by rt35630, Feb 12, 2011
I don't know about expecting the worst, Rain, because fear kept me pilling it up a lot longer than I would have liked. I have been in and out of these rooms since November, at least. First my excuse was get through Christmas, then I set February as a clean date. I finally made it.

My tracker says I'm on day two. Actually, I think I am beginning day three. So far, the main issues have been insomnia and restless everything. I went back to WalMart and got Hyland's leg cramp AND restless leg, and those may be helping just a little bit. Popping pills of any sort at this point is theraputic, as I have been popping them to feel better for two years.

I have learned (if I may be blunt) that I better be at the toilet when I think I need to break wind. Yuck!

But I guess right now I am okay. I have to work tomorrow from about 8-12 playing organ and directing choir. I think that will be okay.

That is all for now. The night time is miserable. Can't sleep with Joe, can't sleep by myself. I put in DVD's that I know well and listen. I think I am getting 15 minutes of sleep here and there but when I come out of it I just get mad because it did not last longer. But I can do okay during the day.

Randy





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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
Randy,

I think what Rain meant was...when we Expect the Worst, somehow the symptoms stop seeming as awful...it's like, your brain is all, "Hey, body...look how strong you are!  You expected to have a 10/10 pain and 24 hours of projectile vomiting and you DIDN'T!  Look how STRONG you are, body!'  And because, at least for me, every chunk of 5 hours time during those first 4 days were different/getting better...I was constantly amazed at what feeling LESS like dying than I did 5 hours before was like.  Like a constant state of your body "overcoming" the Expectation of the Worst.  

I was a biiiig weenie about pain, sickness, and lack-of-sleep before getting off of this Bad Medicine.  By Day 3 (despite not being able to get out of bed, much...and feeling sick as a dog), I started feeling like a survivor and felt a mental and emotional strength I HAVEN'T FELT IN MORE THAN A DECADE!  I can't wait to read your posts a few more hours, days, and weeks out.  I really think you are going to be floored by how strong you didn't know you were.

Rain, your post was beautiful.  I wish you hadn't deleted those 2 paragraphs, so I could've read them.  =/  The sweet is not as sweet without the sappy.

We ARE the champions, my friends!  (see...love the cheeseball/sappy!)


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by Ducky444, Feb 12, 2011
You guys (&gals) are great! Thank you for the unconditional support! It means so much to me-I was close to just dropping out of sight to avoid facing you all. Glad I didn't. I feel less awful then I expected just TIRED. That's my trigger so today I'm staying on the couch, not expecting anything fro myself. Tram has made me so antisocial over the years I rarely go anywhere, but tonight we have dinner invitation at a friend of my husband. So I need to be careful not expect much from myself. I rationalized taking the pill by thinking "----, I don't want emotions back! I just want numb so I can work until I "croak" how morbid is that? But it is kinda true. I fended off deep depression with this drug for the high price of numb emotion and no life really because I'd crash everyday immediately after work and all weekend every weekend, like an alcoholic.  I could never again reach the energy level of a "normal person" with and before tram.
Rain, Nora, Dam, Steph, I'mdone, you are so kind, thank you for being you! I'm back on the horse!

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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
Hooooorayyy, Ducky!!  I'm so glad you didn't hide from us and are back on the horse!  I'll be around a lot today, if you need anything!

<3

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by Ducky444, Feb 12, 2011
Thank you!!!!! Yours seems like a metoric rise from the ashes! back at work, in a PhD program, clean and sober! wow! All the best for you and your mom,
Love Ducky

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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
Thank YOU!!  It was due in full to now being allowed to work, or think about work, for an entire month...going straight into 3 days/week therapy...and not having a significant other (I didn't have to care about anyone but myself).  I was able to, little by little, stay out of bed more and more, and begin to slowly repair all of the friendships that had been damaged by this experience, and how sick I was before even on it.

I slept my life away, even before Tramaggeddon.  I was always tired, always achy, and never happy with my interpersonal relationships.  I lived my life as a constant victim, hiding out in the hopes that things would get better...or, that I could just stay in my bed if they didn't.

I thought my life sentence was one of depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, exhaustion, and joint pain.

Then, in the disaster that is Tramadol Withdrawal, I had all of those things BUT had gained the ability to think clearly, laugh, taste food, and sing...and I took that quiet time to practice regulating my own emotions (since I could finally recognize my own heartbeat).

I never believed in "mind over matter", but I'm starting to.  It's more...you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone.  In my case, I'm learning that I CAN MAKE MYSELF feel ways that I previously thought were out of my jurisdiction.

Tramadol Withdrawal (because it was SUCH a change from the numbess) helped me to teach myself how to "relax into the pain" or "relax into the exhaustion/insomnia" as Emily used to say.  It helped me to teach myself to recognize a raised heart and logically sort out what had caused it, and deal with it appropriately and accordingly.

I am NOT exaggerating when I tell you that I assumed I was someone who would be depressed and anxious for the rest of my life, on medication or not.  I've always been those things.  I really assumed it was just the body and brain I'd been delivered.

It's not the case, and I still get really overwhelmed when I think about how f***ing lucky I am to have gone through this and ended up with a BETTER life than I've ever had before!  I get really sad thinking about all of the people with depression and anxiety in the world who assume it is their life sentence, too.  It just becomes your MO, and you believe that your chemical imbalance is permanent and can only be moderated through diet, exercise, and medication.

Maybe Tramadol is good in the way that after it destroys your body and life, you end up better than before you started taking it.  I don't know.  I'm not a good example, because I was never happy before!  This is the first time in my life that I can say that I feel happy, confident, and strong.  And it's flippin' weird.  Maybe it's like we all had electro-shock therapy?  I mean...taking an MDMA/Ecstasy-cousin (Tram) all day, every day...maybe it IS chemical electro-shock therapy.  

I dunno.  I really am interested to know if the people 3 months + out ended up happier and better than before the drug.  Very curious.

Love you, Ducky!!  My mom is advocating for herself very well, and I'm so proud of her.  I really think it's so in the early stages, that things might turn out okay.  Here's hoping.

<3 <3 <3

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by TxCowboy, Feb 12, 2011
Greetings all you brave and strong Tram warriors.  I would first say that I would like thank each and all for your supporting gifts of caring, engouragement, support and inner strenght!  I am 12 days free of Tram @ 6 pm this evening.  My days 1-10 were thw worst years of my life.  I felt it was imortant you all kmow you each in different ways have not only helped, onather and one more lost soul who was desperate, scared, and loelyand at the doom hidden bottom of virtual HELL and deperate for answers of HELP and you where here Thank God I found you. This group has  litteraly saved a life.  On day 5 it was so bad for me that that I had a Sig Suare P229 9mm automatic loaded cocked and pointed (hollow point on impact explosive bulletts) grined in point to my left forehead.  Before I could "do it" I went on line for a last desperate attempt to order and see and see how fast a new script could show at front door.
Instead, I found Emily's original post from way back when.  I have come to this site everday 5/6 times a day for advice and and reliefr from the overwhelmimg since of loniless.  All of you guys gave me hope, encouragement, and the strenght to put the gun away every time I readanother post.  PLEASE accept my greatfulness and thankfulness. Ihave borrowed bits and peices offerfed by all the combined experience.  After hearing Rascal Flats song "I want go" and cried from xtra WD emotios, I just had to post to thank you all.  Its carried me to day 12!  
Time Heals!  And we all have moe inner than we realize!   Say Strong and keep on plwing throug
Much Thanks - txcwb


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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 12, 2011
I'm back. April of last year I came here. I had been Tram free for 6 days at that point. I checked in and was helped so much by everyones post. I made it through day 13 (my last post here was day 12).
      After 2 weeks of coming here and reading post, I finally allowed myself to go back and read my post from April today. I am so angry at myself. I do remember my 13th day I felt like I would never make it through all the 5 dance recitles and all the rehershals and all that goes with it ,between the 3 girls I have and I just gave up.  I hate this stuff. I am so mad at myself for thinking once again I could  just keep it to a couple a day. There is NO way.... So here I am again, on day 2 ( 43 hours in)  I'm tired, dizzy and tummy troubles, but thats it for now. Tomorrow will be my bad day, I am looking forward to the 5th day when everything feels clearer. I know its goiong to take a long time to get where I need to be. last time the depression and fatuige got to me and I relapsed.My Hubby is off work all weekend, so he is going to take care of everything..... This time I am very determined to never so much as ever look at those stupid pills. I feel like I am missing my kids growing up. This has and will be it. Thanks everyone for all your support!
TMA

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by rainallday, Feb 12, 2011
Well hello Jomas and Tex and congrats on day 2 and day 12!! Hope you find comfort and relief here!!
  Hey Randy sorry if that came across as ominous, I just meant keep the mindset that whatever happens to try and mess you up, you know you will handle it and come out stronger... Thanks damtram for your help explaining it!!

Randy I was on day 5 and it was friday night January 7th , I felt like total crap, and my belts broke on my car on my 2nd delivery run of my shift, causing me to feel like the world was ending for me. I had almost zero money  and couldnt work, well I didnt give up. I called an old friend with a tire shop left a message that night, he called right back saying his tire mechanic might be able to help with belts and to be there at 8am the next morning. Needless to say I didnt sleep. My car barely started and popped off the steering fluid cap from the presssure with no belts...I barely made it to his shop, told hime what just happened and he suggested trying an antifreeze bottle cap on, and can you beleive it fit!! Then I waited around 4 hours while his mechanic struggled with my car but finally got the belts on there! they also put a tire on the car because 1 of mine was showing wires (bad) and the aligned my car too...Total charge?? ZERO he shocked me and said merry christmas since itd been years since we talked. I almost broke into tears..I was saved and back to work that same night (on 1 hour sleep)...I felt there was hope, and needed to because we then had the bad snow/ice storm 2 days later on my day 8...work closed for 2 days and on the 3rd on a snow and ice covered road I had a flat tiire...Talk about bad luck....I had to drive on the RIM 1/4 mile to get to level ground and off the main traffic road..I put my 1 spare on and somehow managed to finish my shift and keep going in the bitter cold...Moral of the story- During my worst withdrawal  periods I had some terrible luck and wanted to give up, but somehow made my mind up that no matter what happened I would handle it and get through it...and I DID...
   I think I'm at day 41 now and much much stonger..So hang in there and have faith.. Life threw alot of lemons at me and I recieved a degree in lemonade!!!
We're starting a warming trend here after 24 degrees last night and in a week it may hit 70 degrees here!! yay cmon spring! Gotta get ready for long work night now.

Ducky!! welcome back!!! some horses are harder to ride than otheres!!! (I think I got a donkey) I'm so glad you got back on!!

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by rainallday, Feb 12, 2011
Well hello Jomas and Tex and congrats on day 2 and day 12!! Hope you find comfort and relief here!!
  Hey Randy sorry if that came across as ominous, I just meant keep the mindset that whatever happens to try and mess you up, you know you will handle it and come out stronger... Thanks damtram for your help explaining it!!

Randy I was on day 5 and it was friday night January 7th , I felt like total crap, and my belts broke on my car on my 2nd delivery run of my shift, causing me to feel like the world was ending for me. I had almost zero money  and couldnt work, well I didnt give up. I called an old friend with a tire shop left a message that night, he called right back saying his tire mechanic might be able to help with belts and to be there at 8am the next morning. Needless to say I didnt sleep. My car barely started and popped off the steering fluid cap from the presssure with no belts...I barely made it to his shop, told hime what just happened and he suggested trying an antifreeze bottle cap on, and can you beleive it fit!! Then I waited around 4 hours while his mechanic struggled with my car but finally got the belts on there! they also put a tire on the car because 1 of mine was showing wires (bad) and the aligned my car too...Total charge?? ZERO he shocked me and said merry christmas since itd been years since we talked. I almost broke into tears..I was saved and back to work that same night (on 1 hour sleep)...I felt there was hope, and needed to because we then had the bad snow/ice storm 2 days later on my day 8...work closed for 2 days and on the 3rd on a snow and ice covered road I had a flat tiire...Talk about bad luck....I had to drive on the RIM 1/4 mile to get to level ground and off the main traffic road..I put my 1 spare on and somehow managed to finish my shift and keep going in the bitter cold...Moral of the story- During my worst withdrawal  periods I had some terrible luck and wanted to give up, but somehow made my mind up that no matter what happened I would handle it and get through it...and I DID...
   I think I'm at day 41 now and much much stonger..So hang in there and have faith.. Life threw alot of lemons at me and I recieved a degree in lemonade!!!
We're starting a warming trend here after 24 degrees last night and in a week it may hit 70 degrees here!! yay cmon spring! Gotta get ready for long work night now.

Ducky!! welcome back!!! some horses are harder to ride than otheres!!! (I think I got a donkey) I'm so glad you got back on!!

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by rainallday, Feb 12, 2011
Nuts!! sorry it posted twice I dont know why, darn lemons! If someone can edit out the duplicate, thanks

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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
Cowboy - Your story is a TRUE SURVIVAL one.  For the billionth time, THANK YOU EMILY, for saving ALL of our lives!!  You've got a stellar brain if it told you to head to your computer, and to click on this link INSTEAD of the ordering-pills one.  Have faith in that stellar brain's recovery...it's going to lead your body through this.  Your life will be unrecognizably amazing, more and more every single day.  We are so glad to have you with us.  You are safe, now.

TMA - I'll tell you, of all of the stories I've read on here...I've never heard of anyone full-on relapsing MORE than once.  You've reached the end, sounds like you planned for it this time, and it's only unicorns and rainbows from here.  Ok, that might have been an exaggeration, but some good, flippin lemonade...as Rain said!

Rain - YOU ARE SO FUNNY!  A degree in lemonade!  So perfect.

Sending strength to our old and new friends...JUST KEEP TYPING AND READING.  And listen to Sprawl II by Arcade Fire on youtube.  You WILL feel better.

<3



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by rt35630, Feb 12, 2011
Hey Rain...I can certainly see the wisdom in expecting the worst. I get that. You are not the only poster on here to say that. I'm hoping for me the worst will be over by Monday. Today is my day three, and I am feeling MUCH better already, but I know enough from what I've read that ANYthing can happen in the war against Tramapuke.

I've talked to two people who say four or five days was the worst of it for them. At this point I am hoping I will be one of the lucky ones. I have sure been asking God for a dispensation - not that I deserve it!

I went with my partner and a friend to a local park and walked 1-1/2 times around it and fed the geese. It is in the mid 50's here now (after a late snow on Wednesday of which there is still evidence today) and it is supposed to get even warmer. I plan on going out every day as instructed. I came back worn out, got in bed and fell asleep for a few luxurious minutes. Restless everything is a lot better but still evident.

Joe (my partner) has 90 days clean (pot) and longer (cigs). It really helps having a significant other who battles the same war. I have thanked God so many times that he was able to stop cigs, although the pot wasn't that bad for him.

I'm going to NA tonight to pick up a white key tag. I am going to try and go regularly. Joe is working most nights when the group we like meets, but I think I need it more than him, so I will go alone.

Thanks ALL of  you for being here for each other. I have never been led astray by this astute group, and you actually are more helpful at this point than NA. However, I have abused so many types of pills, I would be a fool to think I wasn't a plain ole addict. Tramadol is just far more difficult and sneaky than the othes - Xanax, Dexedrine/Ritalin, Hydrocodone.

I will check in later!

Randy

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by rt35630, Feb 12, 2011
Oh, and one more thing...my email is all of a sudden overflowing with ads from online pharmacies - or so it seems, and my main Tramadol online dealer has been calling my phone leaving urgent messages. I think the Devil or one of his ilk is very busy with me right now!  RT :-)

JUST SAY NO, NO, NO!!!

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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
NO, RAIN, NO!!!!  REPORT AS SPAM!!  ANSWER THE PHONE AND TELL THE DEVIL TO F*** HIMSELF!!!

SAY YES TO LIFE AND NO TO DRUGS!!!

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by DamTram, Feb 12, 2011
I meant Randy, sorry!!  Not Rain!  But, Rain, too if he wants some more encouragement that we need to say no to drugs!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 12, 2011
Oh, TX-I am so glad you found us! This drug does NOT deserve your life. Life is much too precious. I can imagine this drug has already enough people in its death grip. You seem too strong and smart for that! Hang on. You WILL have sucky days! It just takes time. We are used to instant gratification, but the things that give us quality are the things that take time. You can't lose weight or get a great body overnight, you can't learn something overnight. It takes time. It is miserable in the beginning. I remember lying on the floor in the bathroom, losing control of my bodily functions. NOT my finest hour! But I am at day 38, I never thought I would make it. I never thought the answer to NOT having pain, is NOT to take the medicine for pain!

I am so glad I checked in and found this lovefest. It makes me sooo happy! Just in time for Valentine's day. TMA! Welcome! I am one of the compulsive posters on here so I am sure you will be seeing plenty of my sorry a*ss. :-)

Randy, I am sooo proud of you! You just gotta hang on!

And my dearest Ducky, I am so relieved to see you response. Get some sublingual b-12 or some EmergenC. My husband bought a 30 day supply of the raspberry EmergenC and I am having it 2x a day. It works!

Today I had my eyebrows done, (it's lovely to be of Mediterranean descent, the olive skin, the dark thick hair, but sometimes you gotta help mother nature). I was somewhere between Groucho Marx and Frida Kahlo. I was glad to see my hairdresser and esthetician. Both of them could not believe what I had been through and how good I looked (even though I am as bloated as a poison toad). My husband and I went back up to our 'hood, and had lunch at a BBQ joint. Such a nice day here. They were having some sort of air show at the harbor. I heard all this noise and looked up out the window to witness the Blue Angels fly by, followed by a AWACS plane. It was a pretty cool moment, seeing them speed by against the lapis sky. It is moments like these that make me proud to be a native, although people always think I am from the east coast or San Francisco.

Chest cold! Yes, my friends, I have another thing to add to the mix, and that is a cold/flu kind of thing. Bad sore throat, coughing, headache/achy feel. Really, it is not so bothersome, at this point, anything that makes me feel human is ok by me. I just want to feel better for Valentine's day now that I can finally get out.

Dam, I am glad to hear about your  Moms, and though you have a smaller group to teach, I am glad you are back. I am sure your kids feel the same. And Rain, what can I say? You are such a great support!

Going to sign off for now, since the sick thing is getting the best of me. Take care, you all! Keep fighting, keep up the outstanding work!

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by rt35630, Feb 12, 2011
Went to NA. Didn't talk during, but did pick up the White tag. I was going regularly during my taper but as per NA tradition, I listened. I think there will be good support there, but I don't look forward to getting a sponsor, etc. At  this point I just want to be done with the drugs and stay clean for a bit, then I will air the dirty laundry, but for now....

Came home crawled into bed and fell ALMOST asleep. Joe came in and said something and I was drooling - good sign??

Why is it that night time is so bad? I have not been plagued today by too many symptoms besides tiredness, and now I want to jump out of my skin! I HATE Tramapuke!

Randy

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by NoraTorious, Feb 12, 2011
Oh Randy, I know this is hard. I do. I would not wish these withdrawals on my worst enemy. I am not going to lie, the next 3 or 5 days are the worst, but then it's over, and it won't kill you. I never thought I would do it. My poor husband was up all night with me, looking after me, giving me my other meds. And I was sleeping for about 20 minutes, pouring sweat, it was horrible. By the third day I checked myself into rehab. I just could not do it alone. My husband is not a doctor or nurse, I was keeping him up all night, it was not fair to him.

I am not saying that is the way to go. Lots of people did this without hospitalization. I went because if I did not, I don't think I would have made it. The fact that you are doing this and still living your life is incredibly admirable. Yes, these next days are going to be crappy. Be gentle on yourself. Check out the Thomas recipe. Take supplements. Some immodium. Mineral baths pull the toxins from your skin. I went through a period where none of the meds or supplements were phasing me. I felt like I was Teflon. I figured I had ruined my body to the point where I was irreversible. But I am here to say, that at 381/2 days I AM getting better. This recovery is not linear. You will improve and fall back, but every day is a day farther away from this horrid little drug, and even if you don't feel it, you ARE getting better. You just gotta fight, and fight hard. Thisbis YOUR life we are talking about. You should not be a slave to a bunch of pills. You are way better than that.

Please hang in there.

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by rt35630, Feb 13, 2011
Okay, Nora and everyone! I am at the dawning (sunrise) of day four. Last night, thank God, I got some spurts of sleep. Maybe an hour a time three or four times, but oh, what a gift. Especially since I have to put on a smile and go to work this morning, but I can do 8-12, and even better, most of that is during services, so no talking to anyone else!

I have been swallowing B4 vitamins, extended release, and so far have consumed two bottles of Hylands Restless Legs, and a half a bottle of Hylands Leg Cramps. I swear they work. I went to bed feeling like I would jump out of my skin, took some, and a half hour later, better. I even spent part of the night in bed with my partner. But I confess to finding the guest bed uncomfortable! I actually have done the right thing, for me, by sequestering. My energy has been chaotic, so I am sure Joe is better at night by himself. I don't think I could have done the last few days of the taper without his support. He came in the room turning on the light and going through the drawers looking for something unnecessary and we had words, but that is okay. He deserves to give me back what ever I give him!

I do realize from everyone's reports that recovery is non-linear, but I feel confident that even though setbacks may occur, I will not be repeating the first few days consistently. If I can get a few hours sleep, I will be okay. I have insomnia problems with the drugs, anyway, so I am not really used to a full uninterrupted night. I AM used to being relaxed and calm, and I miss that!

One of the people at NA was on Tramapuke, and she said the same thing y'all did. Her laptop with Netflix became her new best friend. Be okay not being okay for a few days, etc. She said for her 4-5 days was the worst of it. My best friend was on about six pills a day at one time, and she says the same thing. Neither are aware of this site, so armed with what everyone has learned here, and my friends at home, I feel like I know a little of what to expect.

If tonight is horrid, well, I can make it. I don't work on Monday, and I got some sleep last night. I have asked God sincerely to help me and make this easier. I did try to help myself with the taper, so maybe my prayer is being answered.

I realized I was in trouble when I ran out one night and I went to my parent's house at 3 a.m. trying to figure out a way in (they were there asleep in the bedroom wing.) A screen door was locked and I did not have a key and I considered breaking in. But I did not. I went to a dealer the next day about noon. I never ran out after that. I've done other "addict" type things that I am not happy about. And if I am going to be true to the promise I made when I picked up a white key tag at NA, I have to make amends if possible. But for now, I am just going to work on staying clean, & healthy. I'm not crazy enough to be scared of a sip of Communion wine at church, or even a small glass of wine at a gathering or dinner. NA says stay away from ALL drugs. For now, I am just going to trust the program, trust God, trust my peeps here online and at home, and get back to being truly happy. I have SO much to be thankful for. I hate it that I need substances. But I am done with them. I truly hope. I know better than to trust my own thinking. So NA is my high way.

GodSpeed to everyone on this Lord's day. He accepts all of us with open arms. I know that. Blessings to those in our lives whom we love and who love us in return. They are such a gift.

Randy

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by wewar, Feb 13, 2011
Online chemists without prescription helped turn me in to an addict and I dont know what can be done about them...nothing I suspect. All drugs and Alcohol are a cinch to obtain really in the free world.

I am moving forward into the third week Tram free and feel ok. Sleeping much better and not dreaming quite so much. Still using meditation . Still cooking and baking . Feel a bit smug today which is not a good state of mind. Get these thoughts which say  " you have beaten it wewar well done , one wont do any harm "   Classic delusion of an addict

Keep going rt and if you can find spirtitual help to beat this then I think it helps hugely. I have no specific faith but my soul is complaining that it is about time.

Love and cherishing thoughts to all  which is called " Metta " in Buddhism

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by Ducky444, Feb 13, 2011
Still here thank you all, have to take son and mom in law out as niether drive at this point, its good for me to be with them.  Not feeling strong at all-but i have you....

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by rt35630, Feb 13, 2011
Had a good morning! I am a classically trained professional church musician, and I had no idea how much this drug was affecting my music. It was like I came alive today and I felt connected to the music on a spiritual, rather than simply mechanical level. And I hope it showed!

My college-age choral scholars asked me to go to lunch with them, which I did, I can share with them what I am doing and it was good support. Then an organist-colleague at a sister church needed help figuring out a mechanical problem with the instrument there.

I'm fixing to go hiking. Then I think I will crash.

Randy

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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 13, 2011

Day 3 and still not feeling as bad as I have in the past. Not at all complaining thats for sure. Just hoping and praying that it doesn't hit later.. Normally day 4 is my turn around day. I've been able to do a little luandry and pick up here and there. Watched a movie with the girls all piled in my bed last night.  I am going to try and get an appt. with my Dr. this week and see about getting on an anti-depressent.  I was on Effexor right after the birth of my second daughter and I was on it for 3 months and when I quit I had the same withdrawls as I have had with the tramadol, So I will def. stay away from that! It has always been the depression and fatuige that have made me give up in the past. I am hoping that the 3rd times a charm and I have told hubby to never, ever let me take this stuff again, I will be telling my Dr. too
! I just want to be the way I was before.. I don't even care if I gain the weight back (lost 50lbs on this stuff)... My only major complanes right now are the brain zaps ugh! driving me nuts. I feel like I could do more if I didn't have those little bugers zapping me everytime I turn my head!

Randy I think we both stopped on the same day. Did you do a tapper or just cold Turkey? I tried to tapper and then we had a big snow and I end up with extra kids when it snows so I gave up the tapper but still stayed way below my normal dose, they went back to school and decided my last day would be the following week.. well then we got a huge amount of snow so back to putting it off again. So this was 3 weeks in the making, I was just so ready to get it over with.. drove me nuts just waiting to quit. lol..  Keep up the good work, you sound like you are doing awesome!!

Thanks again everyone!
JMA

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by rt35630, Feb 13, 2011
Thanks JMA. I took my last pills Wednesday. I have been trying to taper since November. I got down from 15-18 pills a day to 9-10 and just stayed there till near the end of January I gave the bottle to my partner and he got me down to 5-6, at which point the WD started. I finally took the last ones Wednesday and gave up any further taper. I am sure it helped, but I don't know how much.

Today feels like a turn-around day, but this is my first (and hopefully last) time stopping Tramapuke, and I won't know until later when my worst days were, but day 2-3 were definitely worse than today. I've been eating and out in the outdoors. Just watched "Sweet Home Alabama" on Netflix - I'm an Alabama boy...I was telling a colleague about this mess today at work, and he said they gave it to him for a month this summer when he had shingles, and he said he had a several day detox after that, and he was only taking a few.

My biggest issue is that I am used to popping a pill now and feeling different. I know that eventually I will be thinking about that. I joined NA but I doubt that will stop a craving. But for now, I am doing remarkably well.

What is a brain zap?

Randy

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by DamTram, Feb 13, 2011
A brain zap is like an electrical shock through the eyes and brain, brought on by a change in gaze, rapid opening of the eyes, or even plain-old-movement.  Opiates don't cause this, so partial-opioid agonists don't, either.  BUT THE EFFEXOR-LIKE ANTI-DEPRESSANT IN TRAMADOL CAN!

I had them from trying to stop the Effexor too rapidly, but only had them from the Tramadol at the very beginning.  With Effexor, they can last for weeks...even months.  Luckily, Tramaggeddon-brain-zaps aren't so bad.  HANG IN THERE, JMA!

Also...if it were me (it WAS me), hold off on starting a new anti-depressant for as long as you can.  Your brain and body could really use the recovery (if you can handle it...which, after the first few days of WD...you may find that you can!), and your self-esteem and strength that develops from watching yourself recover without additional pharmaceuticals is...

priceless.  

I was on Effexor before and during acute-Tramadol withdrawal...but as soon as I'd moved into post-acute withdrawal, I wanted to use my newfound strength to see if I could teach myself to cope with life pressures on my own.  I've never been able to in the past.  But each day off of the Trama****, I became more and more certain that pharmaceuticals have been hurting more and more over the last 5 years.  I finished my Effexor taper 7 days ago, and I take 5htp (a seratonin precursor that eases depression) and GABA (a neurotransmitter derivative that eases anxiety).  If I feel particularly anxious, I take Valerian.  Each one works almost immediately, and they are all naturally occurring substances.

Knowing that the me that is me now...is the entire me, is MIND-BLOWING.  I get angry, anxious, and sad...but my armory of strength, logic, and supplements all them to PASS.  Knowing that I don't have to depend on a doctor or pharmacy, and knowing that I do not have to worry about eventually get off of another medication is...

priceless.

After a life of depression and anxiety, I would never have believed that I could survive without prescribed medication.  Never, ever.  I just get REALLY DEPRESSED when I think about other people who, like me, believe that this is their life-sentence or that they can't through the chemical imbalances without medication.  If I can, then I know that SOME others can, too.  Not everyone.  Of course.  But maybe SOME others.  Maybe you?  It's worth holding off, I think, as long as suicidal ideation is NOT PRESENT.  What I loved about getting off of Tramadol, is that over days 1 through 4...I wanted to curl up and die less and less...with every passing day.  By Day 5, I couldn't even believe that I'd even ever wanted to end it.  And for so long!  

Any, sorry for the rambling...my life's missions have become to tell anyone who will listen NOT to let ANYONE they love be prescribed Tramadol for Chronic Pain, and to get others to believe in their own inner strength, natural supplements, and talk therapy to help them through the dark beasts of Anxiety and Depression.  Not suicidal thoughts, though.  I draw the line, there.

Hope you and RT keep up the good fight!!  You are soooooooo strong, and so much stronger than you've ever known!

All my love.

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by DamTram, Feb 13, 2011
Steph and Nora!!

The Avett Brothers are performing on the Grammies tonight...hope you get this in time to catch it!

<3

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by DamTram, Feb 13, 2011
More strength in music...

Mumford & Sons - "The Cave"

It's empty in the valley of your heart
The sun, it rises slowly as you walk
Away from all the fears
And all the faults you've left behind

The harvest left no food for you to eat
You cannibal, you meat-eater, you see
But I have seen the same
I know the shame in your defeat

But I will hold on hope
And I won't let you choke
On the noose around your neck

And I'll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I'll know my name as it's called again

Cause I have other things to fill my time
You take what is yours and I'll take mine
Now let me at the truth
Which will refresh my broken mind

So tie me to a post and block my ears
I can see widows and orphans through my tears
I know my call despite my faults
And despite my growing fears

But I will hold on hope
And I won't let you choke
On the noose around your neck

And I'll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I'll know my name as it's called again

So come out of your cave walking on your hands
And see the world hanging upside down
You can understand dependence
When you know the maker's land

So make your siren's call
And sing all you want
I will not hear what you have to say

Cause I need freedom now
And I need to know how
To live my life as it's meant to be

And I will hold on hope
And I won't let you choke
On the noose around your neck

And I'll find strength in pain
And I will change my ways
I'll know my name as it's called again

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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 13, 2011
Dam Tram~ Thank you for explaining it like that! I have tried and your explanation is the best by far.. Just to look out the corner of your eye and ZAP!
    I have never been a depressed person. I mean spurts here and ther but nothing major. 10 years ago after my daughter was born the dr. put me on Effexor. I took it awhile and then decided to just stop.. I worked in a pharmacy at the time and I told them how I was feeling and he said it was because of the  Effexor. I went to the Dr. and he tappered me. I was on it about 3 months. Never have I ever had a problem with  meds until I was put on Tram for my hysterectomy and then for my degenerative disk disease. I felt like I could do anything, I was super mom, But as the years have gone on I have become "I'm to busy to be bothered by" mom. I am deteremined to give my girls their mom back.. The one that was a little on the lazy side, but wasn't in such a fog they almost didn't care what was going on around them. I will this time.. I will have to go pick up some 5HTP tomorrow. It was on the hubbys list but he couldn't find it. I would really love to go a natural route if I can. I hate taking Prescrip. pills.. Funny isan't it...

Randy~ Your are about a day ahead of me. I too was a 15 to 20 pill a day person at one time...I remember laying in bed at night heart beating out of my cheast and skipping beats, trying to bargin with god not to let me die and I wouldn't ever take that many again.. and then some odd days/weeks there I would me again trying to make the same deal. Thank goodness he doesn't work in that way...  I love Sweet Home Alabama. I'm going to have to rent that one.. I spent a week DVRing movies for my big withdrawal. today I DVR Grumpy old men... cant wait to watch that. It's been years.lol

Thank you everyone!
JMA

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by rt35630, Feb 13, 2011
Well folks, I had a wonderful, mostly symptom free day. I ate, I stayed busy. I got in bed early and watched one movie, then had to get moving, so I got in my car and drove to my family's camp on the river and talked to God under the stars. I came home and now I am lying in bed next to my partner and he is snoring away, while I am dealing with a good bit more restlessness than I had last night. It isn't horrid, but I doubt I will sleep. I guess I knew this would be a bit of a bumpy ride, so I close with a goodnight to everyone. Peace be with you all.

Randy

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by DamTram, Feb 14, 2011
Randy - You are DOING THIS!!  If you go back and read your posts over the last couple of months, I bet  you'll be surprised by how truly positive you are feeling/sounding right now.  CONGRATULATIONS!

It's always good when the album that got you through the worst of the Trama**** withdrawals wins Album of the Year.  The world is not so corrupt, folks.

<3

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by rt35630, Feb 14, 2011
Ah...The morning of day five. I don't remember sleeping much, but I got through last night and feel rested. A shower and shave seem to be calling my name. The weather is absolutely wonderful here now, so I will enjoy this day. I don't work again till tomorrow, and I told my boss (a priest) what I was doing. She has been supportive and texts me daily asking how I am doing.

DamTram...I am WELL aware of how positive I sound, and I pretty much feel the way I sound. I was petrified that I would be in some sort of hell that I could barely get through the days for months before I started this. So, actually everyone's counsel to expect the worse has probably been good for me. I expected MUCH worse. From what many have said, I have been lucky so far.

Many of the good things people talk about I am already experiencing within the first week - a resurgance of emotional response to stimuli, which has made my musicianship reawake. The physical changes I have been experiencing include some things that are very positive.

I thought after Saturday night I would be sleeping better, but I was able to just give up and deal with things last night and I made it through and with the dawn comes strength, hope, and more courage. I can make it through nine hours of restlessness because it is a low price to pay for my freedom.

Last night I talked to God. I was at the river's edge and though it was chilly, the stars and moon reflected on the water made a good cathedral from which to adresss God. I asked that he would continue to help me fight this battle with the family curse of addiction which I have at some point accepted. I have behaved like a stereotypical addict several times in the past months, and I promised to make the few things I need to "right" if he would continue to give me strength to move on. My friend that quit Trams before me had offered me valium, and I don't feel that it would be that wrong to take some, but I know I have been relying on medications to change the way I feel, and I want to learn to live without that crutch again. I thought my drug was less impactful on my system than alcohol or perhaps a regular opiate, but honestly, I see it was worse in some ways, even though I am thankful I am not an alcoholic. I never got "high." I did feel energized, but if I had known how it dulled my personality I would have thought twice I think.

Anyway...be it day five (it is) or day three. I am in a good place.

If anyone is monitoring this list and is still scared to quit. Try to taper yourself down, but when you see that you can't ... just flush the devil's candy and stop. You CAN succede! You will be happier even in the midst of your body readjusting. And later, when you may have issues of craving or depression, then there is NA and your physician. Just know you will be in control of your own destiny again. It is SO worth it. I have been so angry with myself foe letting these little pills control me...tramapuke...I can't tell you how empowering it is to take control back, even with the diarehea, sleeplessness, restlessness, etc. I am thankful for every one of those things. I understand for the first time why you call it a war. I'm fighting. I AM GONNA WIN!

Randy                                  

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by NoraTorious, Feb 14, 2011
Randy, you are doing so well! I am glad to hear it. You have a great attitude, which really helps things go along. I remember the clouds parting for me on the 4th day, I was suffering real bad, and up all night in my hospital room. I watched the sun rise, and I was so thankful for it. That morning I felt that this was the beginning to my life.

DamTram! Arcade Fire! We don't get broadcast TV but I watched them on YouTube accepting their award and doing "Ready To Start". So deserving best album of the year!

My 40th day. I did not sleep well, and neither did my husband. He made dinner, and dessert which was angel food cake with raspberries. We had some raspberry liqueur and he used that with the raspberries. It was not much but I wonder if that trispggered something. All the sugar.

Still feeling weak, with added joy of dizziness. Just laying low with my beloved husband, and looking forward to being able to get out of the house. Even though I don't feel great, I can look back a week, or a couple of days, and know that I have made some improvement.

Happy St Valentine's day <3 <3 <3

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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 14, 2011

Thank you for writting that this morning Randy!...
  I am at day 4 and this morning my daughter asked me if I was coming to her Valentines party. I said, No, not this time and I saw her poor little face drop with dissapointment. I thought to hell with you tramatrash! So here I am dragging myself around to go to a party of screaming kids, but I will not let this keep me from seeing a smile on my 7 year olds face! Then I will be dropping them off at choir practice. I have to, no take that back, I want to get my life back and live it to it's fullest and that just wasn't happening with the nasty pills. Today everything seems clear, not like I am sitting there listening to someone, but not hearing. I am hearing every word...  Today is a good day and I will take it. Who knows what tomorrow will bring. I'm just tankeful for today!
JMA

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by Ducky444, Feb 14, 2011
Hey everyone, long day at work today! I'm leaving at 2:30 and taking a nap. I'm not happy with how I'm feeling! Everyone sounds so determined& I'm just not feeling it. But I'm working on my attitude issue starting with a nap! I need to break it down into smaller pieces to deal with.  We are in a sandwich situation with an adult son (not functioning fully as an adult) and hubby's patents with blindness and dementia. I'm tired.

Avatar_n_tn
by ka699, Feb 14, 2011
HI EVERYONE WHAT IS A BRAIN ZAP?
KATHY

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by rt35630, Feb 14, 2011
Hey Kathy, if you will scan previous comments for the past couple of days there is a very good discussion of a brain zap. I asked the same thing, but I can't explain it any better than the way it was said a few posts back.

Just got back from another outing to the river. It must be in the 60's today and very sunny. I am seeing with such clarity it feels almost like honest to goodness magic. The beauty in creation, the crispness of the bare tree branches against the blue sky. The lush emerald green of the moss growing on the limestone outcroppings. The cascading waterfall with its mist making a tiny rainbow.

Joe says all drugs put you in a fog. I did not realize that until now, even though I've heard of trama-fog. Just wish I could sleep. A nap would be lovely!

Randy

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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 14, 2011
Kathy, If you read Dam Tram's last post within the past 24 hours you will find the best explanation ever to what it is. I've been trying to explain it to my mom and when Dam Tram wrote about it, I copied it to mom and she was like, "Now I understand"

I went to GNC and got the 5HTP, Then went to the youngest daughters Valentines party. I even felt good enough to stop at the store and pick up some cookies for my 5th grader and stopped by her party too.. . I dropped them off at Choir practice,Then opened the sun roof and turned up the music. So glad I got out today I am so far from normal, but I'm getting there. I do still have the brain zaps, a bit of a headache and I am really tired.

Randy, Just you talking about the river makes me want to go to one and take picture's. I love photography. I think I just might do that sometime this week. We had a over a foot to a foot and a half of snow(very abnormal for us) and very frigid temps last week and now everything is muddy. It's going to be in the 70's this coming weekend.

Ducky hang in there..I can't imagine going through this and having to work. You are doing great. Sorry for all the stress in your life right now. This is hard enough to go through without the help of all the added "bonuses".... Ducky hang in there. You have made it so far and I can't wait to be where you are!

JMA





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by rt35630, Feb 14, 2011
JMA, this afternoon Joe and I took our friend to a local place called "The Wall." A 76 year old man has been stacking stones for thirty years to honor his great-great grandmother, a Native American who was forced to move from Alabama to Oklahoma in the 1830's, but who eventually found her way back, and her life was documented in the journal of a local Methodist preacher/educator. It is a huge place of great power - natural local stones stacked artfully to form a labayrinth like structure 8 feet tall in places. It is the largest memorial to a woman in the US, and second largest in the world. The largest is the Taj Mahal. Native people's from all over the world come and bring special stones to add. It is one of the 11 most spiritual places in Alabama, they are all church buildings and this place. The love you feel as you walk the wall is incredible. The wall begins with a prayer circle in the shape of a womb, and then there is the journey to OK. The return trip was longer so there are resting spots along the way. Their is an amphitheatre in that section, and Mr Hendrix gave us permission today to have our holy union service there. I was concerned he may be offended, but not at all. So we are planning an October ceremony! My late partner and I had our ceremony on the occasion of our 15th anniversary year at our Episcopal Church in San Francisco (where I was minister of music at the time) but Joe and I both want this one to be more "spiritual" and not straight Christian.

I cannot begin to tell everyone how happy  I am that I put this drug down. I'm already having some mental issues - mostly thoughts about getting my hands on some Lortab or Valium, but that is the addict in me. I simply tell on my addiction and soon those thoughts pass.

I can't by my mother anything for valentine's so I am about to go visit her. I so want to tell her about this journey with Tramadol, but my father takes it and I don't want to worry them. He takes two pills a day. He is 76 and can barely move around. It is fine for him. I did not have a legitimate excuse, and if he were younger, I would urge him to get rid of them. But he is not. They both know our family history - his doc says tramadol is safe, and what he doesn't know won't hurt him. He would never take anything like Hydrocodone regularly. And he needs it.

Anyway. Hopefully tonight will be better,  but if not, I can't complain because my day has been full and joyful.

Oh...new symptom. I randomly get an itchy throat and sometimes feel gaggy. Then I will have these spells of sneezing - four huge sneezes back to back. I never do that. Is that the pills too?

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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 14, 2011
Oh Randy Congrats. It sounds like a beautiful place and such a wonderful place to have a holy union.... It also sounds like one of my kind of places to take pictures..

I get the gaggy thing too, but at night and not so bad. My first times to W/D (and my worse) I would do it all night, it was horrible. It's not so bad this time, but I am using Luden's Cherry throat drops for when I start to get the tickle and the sneezing is normal too. mine come in 3's about 4 times a day..  Crazy W/D's!

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by NoraTorious, Feb 14, 2011
Oh, Randy, that sounds lovely! I am so excited for you! Sounds like an amazing place to have your ceremony. My husband loves to stack rocks and loves to see others, I hope you will post pictures of the venue (and your ceremony). What day in Oct are you having it?

And yes, the sneezing is normal. You will experience some fluish symptoms. And if you are lucky, you will not get the flu itself.

JMA-I am happy to hear you spent all this time with your kids. They will remember this for sure, and I am glad it went well.

Ducky, dear Ducky, this is a hard time, I know. But you will get through this and get better. I am here for you. There are a lot of us here for you, actually.

We had to reschudle our Valentine's day plans, since I am feeling so crummy. I am hoping to get it together this week though.



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by Sweetstang, Feb 14, 2011
Day 43.

Well I've officially past the point of previous relapse. I just keep chugging along day by day. I've had a chest/cold/flu thing the past week, kinda getting over it, just wish I could get rid of the cough.  Also have had some bad back pain lately and still this damn heel spur. Just ***** when I'm active and have an active job, its just frustrating. On the flip side..the headaches seem to have improved after reducing the excedrine intake. Still for sure have cravings, well for anything whether its Trams, vico's, really wishing I could relieve this back pain. Not sure why if its not one its the other?  Need to get into the Chiro. soon!


DamTram-
Thanks for your kind words. I have been seeing a Neuro MD. I've had chronic headaches for prolly 10+years. I do get migraines, but mostly just daily tension headaches with varying degrees of pain. She said it was due to Analgesic Rebound...taking too much meds, too often. Which now after backing off, I have seen an improvement finally!! Thank-God!! I would still be interesting if finding out about the Thyroid test if that shows anything. Congrats on the PhD program! How exciting. Not so sure there is a whole lot I can do with the back troubles tho, both my parents have back issues and I already have multiple bulging discs. Just to try and avoid surgery someday. Hope your Mom is doing alright!

Well within the last 3 weeks we've gone thru Blizzards, below zero temps and today was in the 40's. A heat wave, felt like Spring for sure!! I also watched the Grammy's-Music is for sure a GREAT TOOL. Just puts me at ease and in a much better mood!


Quote I saw on Facebook recently:


"I Can Grin & Bear It     Or    I Can Smile & Change It"




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by Ducky444, Feb 14, 2011
Hey all, Nora your kindness is so helpful to me, yours too JMA, thank you for thinking of me. Randy, the "wall" sounds magnificent. Reminds me of the Labyrinth where I used to meditate before I began the big deep freeze of my soul. I came home early from work rested and started exercising fir the first time in what seems like forever. Maybe it will help clear my brain and help detox my bod. Hope you feel better fast so you can celebrate V day with your hubby, Nora. G-nite

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by DamTram, Feb 15, 2011
Randy - I love reading your posts!  It's like a real-live-colorful-poetic-accessible relation of what recovery feels like.  As a follower of your posts, it's still just so cool for me to read the change in you.  

Ducky - I read both of your posts in the same sitting, and that's amazing that you exercised!!  I still haven't been able to go to the gym.  Maybe it will help me with this crazy insomnia...

Nora - I hope you feel better, soon!!  You and your hubby deserve the chance to get out there and celebrate your love for each other.  

JMA - I am sooo glad you got the 5HTP!!  I promise that the brain zaps will begin to ease.  I promise.  Let me know hwen it switched to 'swishing'.  I am so happy you pushed it out to be with your girls...I've found that I'm able to force myself to do so much more OFF the Tramadol, and I'm always glad that I did.  

Sweetstang - Crazy weather.  But NOT crazy that you made it past the 40 day mark!!  I know that was the downfall before, but your resolve is soooo strong.  YOU ARE A SURVIVOR!

Oh, goodness gracious.  I've only been able to sleep about 4 hours/night for the last 5 nights...and I'm dyin, here.  Here's hoping for 6.5 tonight.  

Be well, all!

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by rainallday, Feb 15, 2011
I get to be post 200 yay!! I figured it'd be a new room by now.
Anyone else getting all the names jumbled here?? Could just be my scatterbrain.
Hope everyone is doing well my tracker says 44 days so thats great!
I was going to quit cigs valentines day since a woman was why I started smoking. But I had to work due to the holiday and that has thrown my brain into a loop. Scheduling anything has been hard for me., so now I feel all flustered and have planned to shoot for wednesday (day off). I onlu JUST realized amazon has tons of mp3's for .99 and there are also tons of hypnosis quitting stuff tracks.and binaural beats etc etc..Unlike tramacrap where I just did it like a fool with no plan or aids for relief, I think guided hypnosis and meditation tracks will be a big benefit. Why I did'nt think of that in january is beyond me. Guess thats why one of my gaming names was 'idiot of all time'
Sampling the mp3's is fun as heck too.. "sit down, relaaaaaaaaaaax" (quaid) lol. You get about 15 seconds of any mp3 your interested in.
  O.k. so Happy holiday everyone I'm too pooped from 4 nights of work with 5th tomorrow Good  night!
Stay strong warriors!

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by DamTram, Feb 15, 2011
Rain - There's a method called EasyWay to quit smoking, and it involves reading the book "The Easy Way to Quit Smoking" by Allen Carr.  You are encouraged to smoke while reading the book, because the whole point is that if you are a quitter who 'has to give something up', then not smoking will be a part of your life.  Supposedly, by the end of the book, you simply never want a cigarette again...as opposed to being someone who has to be constantly reminded that they are not 'supposed' to smoke.  I am halfway through it, and I can feel it working.  I have been trying to quit, over and over, for 3 years...but have always fallen into what the book refers to as 'breaking down'.  It's part of the 'brainwashing' of smoking and being a smoker, and a total fallacy.  I'm looking forward to seeing how it ends up.  It's worth a look-see!  Smokers beat themselves up over quitting, which just makes it harder for them.  Hence the constant lack of success.

Good luck!!

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by rt35630, Feb 15, 2011
Okay dawn of day 6 and back to work. I don't want to go sit in a windowless office! I want to go back outside with the wonderful weather and enjoy my newfound clarity of sight, my thankfullness, my emotions, my response to stimuli, before I take it all for granted!

Last night the night of day 5, presented a new symptom - night sweats - it also presented something else - SLEEP. WONDERFUL SLEEP. I dreamed in a good way, too. If I have to deal with this for a few days, fine.

So since I have tried to be descriptive in my recovery because I think that it is important to report the positive changes as well as the negatives here is a recap of my previous five days:

Day 1 night, and all of day 2 really blew in a bad way. I was either in bed writhing with restlessness or on the toilet. But is was very bearable. Just very unplesant. I don't remember any sleep.

Day 3 and 4 were a little better. The restlessness was not as acute, and maybe I was just living with the symptoms a bit better. I did get a bit of sleep during evening of day three. And I started seeing positive results from the detox in the form of musical performance betterment on day 4.

Day 5 was like a rebirth. I am finding stores of energy that I did not expect to find - not really interested in the house yet, but I look forward to polishing all my silver! I was out all day and seeing the world, even in the midst of winter, with new eyes. It is such a gift.

So I reported my evening symptoms above. I will check in later and let you all know how my day went and if I did okay at work.

Randy

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by rt35630, Feb 15, 2011
Rain - I will post about Joe's stopping smoking experience later today. He was a 2-pk a day smoker and he managed to quit cigs and then pot in a period of a couple of months. It is something you have to be ready to do, like tram was for me. Big hug, and hope you continue to find things to be thankful for. It is so helpful!  -Randy

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by Ducky444, Feb 15, 2011
I want Randy's form of recovery! I should clarify my exercise is on the Wii! Wii fit program which I have had for three years and just figured out how the heck to use it yesterday!!!! Better than taking drugs I'll keep plugging along....

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by rt35630, Feb 15, 2011
You know...I don't believe the only way to find God is the Christian way. I just know that an intelligent significance is out there watching us and often helping - especially when you ask. It helps me so much! I can scream for relief, but also say a prayer of thanksgiving when a gift is received. It really helps!

Joe tried stopping smoking many times! Finally, his MD recommended that he go on the patches, but supplement with nicotine lozenges. They are two separate programs, but Joe was smoking 2 packs a day. He went on the patch, and when he got a craving, he would take a lozenge. He would only use it for the duration of the craving. I am sure the lozenge had an added benefit of fixing the oral part of smoking, too. He followed the program as directed for the patches, continued to use the lozenges after that, and he weaned himself off. He was ready. I think that is a big part. Of course it wasn't cheap, but we are reaping the financial benefit now.

Ducky...I am having a bit of a sinking spell here at the office. I ate some chips and drank some juice, but I would like to lay down. That's okay. Nothing I can't work through. I am still so excited that I can DO this and be happy.

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by kdemers4, Feb 15, 2011
I have been diagnosed with multiple health problems, Lyme, Fibro, Deg Disc, Arthritis, now possible Lupus..Started at age 27. My doc put me on Tramadol max dose of 300mg daily for the past 12 years. I used it as prescribed but noticed over the past year my body seemed to crave it even when I thought I was fine. I could go max of two days before my muscles were feeling like they wanted to rip out of my body and causing me to twitch.  I also noticed in the past  8 months how terrible my anxiety was and how paranoid i had become. It has caused great strain on my marriage. My Doc had me on a few antidepressants along with the tramadol which now think that didnt help with the mixture. ( Interactions) Anyways, I asked my husband to take away the tramadol and don't let me have it again. I had a huge increase in anxiety, Heart palpitations, Speeding heart, Muscles felt they were on fire, Blood pressure was extremely elevated 155/90. Panic attacks and noticed small amounts of odd thinking (paranoid) but better than when i was on the med. I am on the second week and wonder if this is ever going to get better. Is it possible for a medicine after using for 12 years to start causing mind games? And will my detox ever get me back to somewhat normal? My addiction didnt seem like the normal I WANT the medicine back, I don't crave it, or feel I would use it again. Just feels like its a physical need if that makes sense. I didnt realize until another forum told me Tramadol was suppose to be tapered off. I hope i am over possible seizure?

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by rainallday, Feb 15, 2011
Well Damtram sure I believe people beat themselves up over quitting cigarettes  and all, thats why im going to be
hip-mo-tized!!!! I listened to subliminal binaural beats quit track all night, and yet im enjoying a cigareete right now.hmmm So yeah definately wanting to go hypnosis route..I havent 'read' a 'book' in decades though so I'll wait on that one for now. If it works for you I may try it!
  And Randy I DO have patches I just bought (boy do they cost $$) I got the walmart generics the weakest ones 7 mg.
Havent worn one yet cause i havent quit yet.Im sure they will help after i listen to hypnosis.. I smoke ultralight 100's so I dont wanna go with the strongest patches.
   KDEMERS4 welcome here, glad youve decided to quit..I havent read of anyone here having a seizure so I imagine your fine and dont think about that. If your on the 2nd week congrats!!! You'll start to feel better any day now! Sure you'll have ups and downs, we all did, but it gets better and soon!!! Stay strong! The paranoia is normal too, many of your symptoms will start fading away now..
  Hope everyone is strong, gotta get ready for dumb work now, Hang in there people!!! Dont forget to visit here and post!!

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by rt35630, Feb 15, 2011
Had a long day at work, but got a lot accomplished. I don't really feel like getting outdoors. RLS again. nothing horrid. just one of the less better days! I hope for good sleep tonight like last night!

Randy

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by NoraTorious, Feb 15, 2011
Ducky, remember that everyone's progress is different. Don't be discouraged. Know that there are better times ahead. This too shall pass. You have been through the very worst, and I have faith it will get better for you very soon.

KDEMERS-I went off cold Turkey. For some, it is the only way. I knew I could never taper off, and it was never going to work unless it was removed once and for all. Some people can do this by taper, others cannot. Either way, it is up to you wether it is the right way or not. From what I have read, there has not been any reports that show seizures in the recovery/WD period. You were probably more in danger on your meds than not. Just to let you know, I was taking about 1000mg a day -300 of that was XR. And an antidepressant on top of that. All of my Drs were shocked I had not had a seizure or seratonin syndome. And my liver functions are all normal. So you are probably safer now than ever. Just keep moving forward. The days will not be easy. I KNOW. My first two weeks were very difficult. But I came out okay. And you know what? I feel better off it than on! My Chronic pain is much more manageable. Welcome, you will find this to be the right place to be.

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by Jomasmomagain, Feb 15, 2011
Kdemers4, One thing about this drug I have come to realize, is nothing is normal. some people have certain things while on it, while others might have it when getting off. My first time to withdrawal  C/T and was the worst thing I have ever gone through and I've had 3 kids.....I had just about every withdrawal symptom mentioned and this time so far, knock on wood, has been a little easier and for that I am so thankful. I agree with rainallday, I rarley if ever have heard of someone having a seizure getting off it. I have heard  quiet a few on this journal (think I've read it twice now...LOL) that have while on it. one lady while her child was in the car with her... Stay strong your in your 2nd week and look how far you made it since day one.. 12 years is a long time to be taking it and I am so jealous of you on taking it that long and not craving more until this past year. My brain sold me short and had me taking more and more after the first year or else I was having what seemed like withdrawal symptoms, strange how our brains/bodies work...  I just can't understand why,given all the information, do Doctors prescribe antidepressents and strong ones at that. To people on Tramadol? I have the Deg Disk and Arthritis in my hips bad. First time given to me was for my hysterectomy, He gave me 240 with 5 refills...This was 3 years ago.... ok I will stop. I'm getting ready to go back through my rant again about these pills..LOL....

Just know you are at that turning point that everyone talks about.. Just keep pushing. We're all here for you

JMA


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by NoraTorious, Feb 15, 2011
JMA, I love your cardinal avatar. So pretty!

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by ImDONENoMore, Feb 15, 2011
Hi everyone,

Nora- I'm so glad you brought up the issue about tapering v. cold turkey as I have a question for everyone here.

I'm on the substance abuse forum for medhelp quite a bit and there are always new members arriving with an addiction to tramadol.  Some of the veterans of this forum insist that tramadol MUST be tapered due to risk of seizure.  However, I too thought I had read somewhere that there had never been any reported cases of seizure during withdrawal, only when taking high doses or taking tramadol with an anti-depressant (i.e. serotonin syndrome).

Can you all help me and let me know what you think?  I'm afraid to post over there about this as I will surely be reprimanded by those veterans if they don't agree with me.  Help everyone I need your feedback.  Thanks!  :)

p.s. and i did cold turkey from tramapoison and I know many of you did as well, so what are they talking about? (and i did go cold turkey from xanax too on the same day almost 7 months ago although i have read that you should ALWAYS taper from a benzo even though i was too stupid at the time and didn't know the high risk i was taking when doing that)

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by MyFreedom, Feb 15, 2011
I think the others are correct in that the risk of seizure is more likely while on tram (particularly high doses...the higher the dose, the higher the possibility). I'm no expert either, but from my year and a half plus of reading up on tram, I'm not sure anyone knows for certain...even our trusted doctors that should know the risks with this sutff. Our resident expert here in Emily's journal is, of course, madtram. I don't think she's a dr either, but she certainly knows more about this drug than most doctors do, in my opinion. Maybe she can chime in and let us know a little more. All that said, I think that the risk of seizure probably is significantly lower once tram is stopped.

On a different note.... I am approaching 1 year free (about 5 weeks and 2 days away)!!! All of you hang in there. Cindy, congrats on surpassing your previous relapse time....40+ days, right? Congrats to all of you who are still on the road to regaining the real "you"!!

:)



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by NoraTorious, Feb 15, 2011
Yes, Sweetstang, I am so proud that you surpassed that previous mark! Good for you! I know it must have been hard, but here you are, and even withstanding such rough weather!

ImDone/MyFreedom, I know I read that too. I can only speak for myself, I have been lucky I did not have a seizure or experience seratonin syndrome. I know G-d was watching over me, because I was really playing with fire. The worst of it is I had no idea!

My Freedom, congratulations! How does it feel? Even though I am not feeling that great energy and health wise, I cannot believe I made it this far. But your accomplishment is amazing. I am sure the farther away you get, the less of a desire. I don't want Tramadol, per say, I just want to find my way to the 'normal' me again. Not an easy road I know.

Everyone is doing so well and it makes me feel great. Lots of great vibes coming from this room!

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by rt35630, Feb 15, 2011
Re seziures. I think I was having mini seziures at night when I was taking high doses - say 20x50mg per day. I would be laying there relaxing and my body would quickly convulse. It only lasted an instant, but I bet it was related to tramapuke because I never had it happen again since I got down to 10 and less a day.

I'm having a bad afternoon. I want to isolate. Mild RSLs and jittery. Nothing like the first few days, but yesterday was so wonderful!

I called a friend who is making run to my dealer and asked him to get me 10 valium. It isn't a medication I am fond of, but I know I will rest better in the evenings with something to take the edge off. And it works for me. The issue bugging me is I just picked up a white key tag at NA. I am supposed to stay clear of all drugs. My priest said that she felt if taking a valium or two at night to get me a couple hours rest helped, not to feel guilty, but also not to abuse it and take 4 or 5 at once.

I am handling this lesser day okay, but I really need to get a couple of hours sleep a day to keep my strength for work and morale, I have to train two choirs tomorrow - I don't have the luxury of a snow cancellation this week!!

Opinions...especially from NA members please. Just state your opinions without judgement, please!

Randy

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by DamTram, Feb 15, 2011
If NA is based on God, and a priest is a messenger of God, then it seems the priest would know best.

I could never do NA or AA because I haaaaate black and white rules.  For exactly the dilemma you're having.  Also, I don't believe in giving anything up to a higher power...because I believe it robs us of the credit we owe to ourselves.

Do what you need to do FOR YOURSELF!  Make sure partner is watching over you, and you'll be fine.

ImDONE - I also suffered convulsions at the high doses, but I don't think ever a seizure.  The three days before I went cold turkey (and had been put on involuntary medical leave from work), I took 50x50mg's per day.  When I went cold turkey at the end of the 3rd day, the convulsions ceased and no seizure occurred.  Prior to that, I had been taking ~20/day for a couple of weeks.  Randy is making me believe in a Tramadol taper, though!  He seems to have suffered least of all of us!  

But...honestly, I believe it's length of time on the drug.  Emily was on it for years, and suffered more and took longer to recover than those only on it a couple of years.  I ended up on high doses, like JMA, but only for about a month, and I was only on Tramadol for a total of 6 months.  MadTram has said before that Tramadol just totally rewires everything...so the longer on, the more wires to uncross.  So go tell those OTHER forum people to can it.  =)

I turned in my letter of resignation (my first, ever), effective 7/1/11, today...as my principal was so morally bankrupt that she quickly recognized how much better I was the morning that I returned after A MONTH of medical leave that she came in after TWO HOURS of me returning to teaching to do an unannounced, FORMAL observation on me.  It was horribly, morally bankrupt (so intentionally so) that I didn't trust myself to sit in the 'evaluation' today where she would tell me I wouldn't be rehired for the next year and not finally say something nasty.  So, I terminated myself.  I lied and said I was going to UCLA, even though it turns out that I was wait-listed.  Resigning means no option of unemployment benefits come July, but I decided that my pride was more important.  I do believe in universal energy, so it's unfortunate that she has put out so much evil in to the world (I was the last of 8 friends over the last 3 years at that school to be terrorized into quitting and/or being fired).  It's all about the kids, ya'll!

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by MyFreedom, Feb 15, 2011
Nora - It feels great. I have no cravings....never did. I was *mentally* done with tram long before I ever stopped it. I was just afraid to stop for fear of w/d. Once I decided I was no longer afraid, all was fine and I began my loooong taper. After I stopped, I really made the biggest turning point physically and mentally around the end of the fourth month free. At that point all of the nuisance and residual symptoms had all but disappeared. I've said it before, but....do I wish I'd never met my first tram? Absolutely, but if I hadn't I wouldn't be where I am now. Because of that 8 year path I know so much more about myself and what I am capable of accomplishing...and that's a good feeling! :)

Randy - I wouldn't feel too bad about getting a little help for sleeping. Just use as little as absolutely possible and as seldom as possible. At the tail end of my taper and once I finally stopped, I needed some help too. My doc had given me 15 flexeril tabs (mild muscle relaxer) for my back. She gave me those in early November of 2009 and I still have 2 tabs left. I split them in half and would only use them if I had gone a couple of days with very little sleep. I would take one and get a good night's sleep and wouldn't take another for several days at least....only when I felt I really needed to relax due to the w/d.

Again, just take them as sparingly as possible.

:)

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by StephC28, Feb 15, 2011
Hi all!

Glad to see all the new posts. :)

Wanted to address the seizure risk post...I believe the deal is this: the risk of seizure is greatly increased if you take high doses when your body isn't acclimated to it. As in, you use to take 15 a day, and then you quit. Two weeks later you decide to start up again...and you try to go back to the amount you used to take...well that could cause a major seizure. I've also heard of people having them on large doses mixed with other medications.

The solution? Get off tramadol if possible!! Either taper and then CT, or do a long, slow taper, or just CT. It will be hard...but so possible! Everyone here sounds so good! And Ducky - I have days like the ones you mention - you are so not alone. I try to just come here and read or go out of the house or go to yoga or call my family...or all of the above. I know you can pull through these tough days. We're all here for you.

I'm on day 45...and I really never thought I'd get here. But I'm here. And feeling pretty damn good.

I wish I had time to write more, but I've been so busy with work these days. I do read everyone's posts daily and am sending healing thoughts to everyone.

Be well all



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by forbea70, Feb 15, 2011
been reading your guy's posts for a couple days, haven't really stopped.  Had no idea what i was putting in my body.  Like alot of others I had a back injury long story short, I've been through this before.... WOW was i wrong.  Approximately 2 years ago I was put on HUGE amounts of prednisone for about 6 mos for an ideopathic Immune disorder. Anyway,  when I weened off of the prednisone I became depressed and had bad anxiety(I thought it was bad) so my doc ended me up on gabapentin, Klonipin, effexor, and last but for sure not least; the no prob pain killer, TRAMADOL...I slowly started to realize how much of a fog I was in so stopped taking the klonipin first(cause i thought it would be the worst)then stoppped the neurontin(gabapentin)then the next one was the effexor.  Had no idea what to call all the stuff that was happening, like the brain zaps( I Thought I was going crazy) but got through that also.  Then for the easy one.  Then less or non addictive pill that I took for those same couple years of a dream. When I didnt refill my meds, I also didnt fill the tramadol either.  After about 3 days I thought I was going crazy, so went in to the ER from panic and the heebe geebees(internal itchiness)could not set still or have one relaxing thought.  had no idea still at this point that it was the tramadol.  went to my doc 2 days later after a few zanax from the ER.  Told the doc i quit taking all my meds. Told her I didnt want to take something everyday and to give me something for once in a while when i think i really need it.  Well she gave me norco 5 and vistral.  When I took the Norco I felt an amazing relief from most of the way I was feeling.  After about 2 weeks of taking more norcos than I probably needed.  It let me get some things done after feeling like total crap bad for a few days(having still no Idea what was going on)

Thank god I found all of you.  I totally thought I was going Insane.  Since I figured out what was going on(just the last couple days)I have only turned to the norco when i think i cant take it anymore.  every w/d symptom I have read on here I am having.  If I take one 5 norco it will pull me out of the abyss.  I think i am only delaying the full crap but not sure.  2 weeks of not knowing what was going on when i took the norcos, hopefully i didnt make it worse.  Seeing my doc on fri but not sure how to approach her.  Im super pissed,  cant believe the docs give this craziness to people, especially a person who comes in depressed from 6 mos of steroids.  I'm so worse off than i was before i ever started that crazy regimen of drugs.  

It has been 3 mos since the klonipin,  2 mos since effexor, about the same for the neurontin, and 1 month since any tramadol,  my question is when am i going to be able to get away from the 2 or 3 norcos i take a 24 hour period.  I took way more heavy pain killers in the past for my back injury, but WOW when I go more than 8-10 hrs without one it gets bad just as it was when i was out of the tramadols.  should it be easier this way or not.  want to not take anything.  but dont want to end up in the hospital with the same panic and anxiety, not to mention all the other crap. Almost forgot about the terrible outlook and thoughts. Its soooo bad its like its not even real.  Almost easier to talk my self out of the thoughts because they seem so artificial.  Artificial, but sooo intense. The waves of heat and cold and....cant type anymore.....Thank god i found this on the internet...wish i would have looked at this 2 years ago.HA  
I think I bit off more than i could physically handle with stopping all those crazy meds in such a short time.  I'm totally miffed at how the man comes in because he is withdrawling from steroids (no energy at all after not having to get more than a couple hours of sleep for about 6 mos.   Should of gave myself more time to feel better, but it was a whole other crazy drug to come off of. I was half insane from the only drug that would keep me alive.(prednisone)  Out of the pan into the fire i went with the effexor, klonopin , neurontin, and oh ya the tramadol.  Hope to have this over soon. I feel another wave coming on.  talk later .  thanx everyone who takes time to write., could not have imagined how helpful it would be(since I didnt know what was going on)to know that i'm not the only one going through this terrible, unimaginable horror.  I wont take another tram i know.  Hope I can go all the way with these last few noros to lesson the blows.  Not sure if im doing myself worst like this or should i just jump off and go for it and ride it out.  Didnt know how long the nightmare would last.  feels sooo much better to know what is happening.  way less anxious knowing what is happening thanks again,  I'll check back later   Forbea70


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by EmilyPost, Feb 15, 2011
This thread is closed :)

Please move to Part 43!

http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/268745/Tramadol--Ultram-Recovery-Room-Part-43

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