As the 'real' me emerges from the mist I'm confronted by a new problem, loss of confidence. The severity of the withdrawal symptoms have left me fearful of going out and facing the world alone. I feel like a different person and someone I don't really know. I was on the benzos a very, very long time. My pre Benzo self lived in the 1970s, I was in my late twenties and I'm now nearing seventy. It's difficult to appreciate how much those lost years have affected me. Any personal development, learning and experiences during the interim years may well have been influenced by the drugs. It's impossible to ever know what I would have been like without them.
I have to concentrate more on who I was during the last few years prior to jumping rather than how much I may have lost since the 1970s. I was certainly confident in spite of the anxiety episodes and many minor physical problems. I could drive long distances and created a busy, happy life, although retired, with good friendships. I was a member of various organisations as well as being a voluntary visitor for the elderly housebound. All this I have to retrieve as I find my feet.
I also feel I should throw out all my clothes and start again. They're part of the old me and I want a fresh beginning. I'll wait awhile and see what unfolds over the next few months before making major decisions. Even moving house is a difficult change that needs to be made. My present house is too large for the two of us as we get older and also holds memories of my nights pacing the floor in and out of rooms as well as unimaginable suffering. I don't want these reminders.
Finally, as the major withdrawal symptoms lift I'm finding the smaller stuff is coming to the fore. Things that were niggling have become chronic and frustrating. I'm thinking mostly of my disturbed nights as I continue to wake approximately every hour then waking around 3.30 a.m and staying awake until morning, the low back pain that's stabs away incessantly, the irritating itch, the general feeling of weakness and debility and the mist that shrouds my brain. But, how much better to be complaining of the minor ills when the severe acute periods have eased and hopefully left for good. I must always look on the bright side of life! 😙
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