I wrote this in 2019 but I want to add it again today because I am experiencing that dreaded setback! I considered myself well and recovered then suddenly I am facing a long and dramatic return into sleepless nights and the nightmares I have spoken about before on my journey. I am now 7 years 7 months off. Symptoms are never more than a stone’s throw away for a long time for a few of us. However, I am getting through and I recognise this period as a time when more readjustment is needed in my brain to bring it back to full health.
‘I’ve been so reluctant to post this and share it with you because I’m always aware that a setback can happen out of the blue just as they’ve happened for others a long time off like me. However, I think the time has come to bring some hope into everybody’s lives especially those who may be on a long and protracted benzodiazepine recovery journey. I’m going to risk it and declare myself well, free of benzos, no symptoms and back to a normal, drug free life with no signs of illness or benzo damage of any sort. I’m 61/2 years off, turned my last corner at six years off with just one wave for a few hours a month ago and nothing since. I have more energy than I could ever believe would come back and sleep like the proverbial log.
After 40 years of various benzos, often prescribed in high doses and together plus other psychiatric drugs in the early years (due to some crazy diagnoses that were far from the truth of the situation) and a tumultuous recovery, much of which I still can’t put into words, I am a reborn! I was damaged by an uneducated medical profession that is not given any guidance on the awful and devastating problems their flippant prescribing, after a few minutes consultation, can do to the patients for whom they’re supposed to ‘do no harm’. I still say it’s a scandal of immense proportions when lives are taken away by those dangerous few minutes with a trusted advisor in charge of our health. It saddens me that we have to learn through our own research and through suffering countless symptoms that we had no idea were caused by this drug that should be prescribed, at the very most, for just two to four weeks not forty years! I will never trust a doctor again.
How has my recovery unfolded and what did I do to reach this stage are perhaps far greater questions to be answered now than moaning about why it happened. It happened and I accept that but will always fight to get recognition out there and to do my best to help others through the nightmare they suffer due to no fault of their own. I’m not going to list the points that helped my recovery but behind it all is the observation that acceptance and surrender without trying to fight symptoms is really the only way to win the battle.’
It will all pass again and is just another u turn on that rocky road to full recovery. I continue to accept and surrender. I will update when the road ahead is clear again!
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