The Beginning of My End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today. - Part 5

By Sleepynurse · Jan 15, 2015 · ·
  1. Part 2 of Her Road to Addiction

    So I became more and more mentally healthy. Still jogging 5 days a week and the feelings of betrayal I felt began to dissipate almost completely by a year out.

    So when I was at uni the first time it was to become an English teacher. Sadly, i didn't realize until very late that teaching probably wasn't truly the profession for me. But then nursing popped into my head.

    This is when when I moved back home and met my future husband. After baby sleepy was born i finished her pre-req's for nursing school. All the while prior, my husband, our baby and i were living at my mom's house. I was in school full time and still exercising daily and making sure my family was taken care of. we were saving up money so we could buy our own home.

    We had finally gotten approved of a home and I was set to start Nursing school the month before. I had also started a part time job, waitressing to help with the added bills that would come with living on our own.

    Going from living with my mom, not working except for school, working-out every day to living on our own for the first time, waiting tables 3 days a week and being in nursing school full time. Slowly i stopped exercising. I didn't even realize it but then one day, i thought, "I haven't exercised in TWO MONTHS!" I thought I was just too busy and had no help with the baby. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed with all these changes and found time to exercise almost non-existent.

    After six months of living in our home, in school, and waitressing we were entertaining some family members and were drinking and playing board games. I drank, as we did from time to time, and I felt so relaxed for the first time in months. I hadn't realized how stressed out I had been feeling. And how on edge I had been.

    Well after that night it was a sad, sad slide down into full blown alcoholism. Four months from that night i was drinking a liter of vodka a night and keeping it mostly hidden. I would drink at school out of water bottles. I would drink every single waitressing shift which sadly was easy because lots of my fellow servers would drink or use drugs while on the job. Drive drunk frequently, never with baby nurse in the car, thank god. I still passed that semester with flying colors and absolutely no one had any idea.

    Well, a month or two later, i was pregnant with second sleepy baby. Overnight i stopped drinking. This reinforced in ny mind that i couldn't possibly have a problem with alcohol, otherwise, how could i quit so abruptly?

    I finished 3rd semester totally sober but still not exercising. I delivered my second beautiful baby in the middle of fourth and final semester of nursing school! Totally drug free because I'm a freak like that and there is no opiate on the planet that gives the rush of child birth :-D.

    I graduated nursing school two months later with two little ones! So proud of myself. I really felt like she couldn't truly have had a problem with alcohol or else how could i have graduated nursing school with a job and babies, to boot!

    So sadly, around two months postpartum I began drinking again and it took no time to get back up to 750 mL- 1 L of vodka a night... my husband only ever noticed if i drank really fast and on an empty stomach. I would also pour him a little drink so that he would be a little buzzed and just assume i was a little buzzed.

    I gained my dream nursing job and honestly did amazingly well at it. But i still had this addiction and sadly a dream job doesn't just make an addiction go away. I was getting wasted every single night.

    One night while driving home completely intoxicated, I d hit a pole and nearly totaled my car. The car was in driveable condition (barely) and i limped it home. I had pissed myself in the front seat and just sat sobbing in the garage when ny husband finally came out to find me.

    The darkest part of this story is I have absolutely no recollection of this event. my husband almost left me at this moment. People at the bar i was at tried to take my keys but i demanded to drive home... i have been so thankful everyday since then that i didn't take an innocent life that night. From that night on i has never driven inebriated. I think a lot of people would have thought that was rock bottom and i prayed it was. But I drank the very next night.

    Every morning I woke up hating myself, wondering why I couldn't stop doing something I loathed so much. But night would fall and i would drink again. In secret. Taking shots in the bathroom or bedroom closets. I had become so good at hiding it. And never called out sick from work or anything.

    At some point during this horrible addiction, one day after work I had left the hospital and upon arrival home to remove my scrubs I realized to my horror that I had forgotten to waste 0.5 mg of hydromorphone. I thought for sure i would be terminated the very next day even if I had a clean UA.

    But i went to work the next day and .... No one knew. It was crazy to me. I kept the Dilaudid in my pocket for weeks. Until I truly realized, no one was missing it. I was very deep into my alcoholism at this point and this is the only reason I think I entertained the idea of using this medication at all. I remembered how good percocet had made me feel in the past.

    I actually came to this forum to see how i could consume this medication as I had absolutely no desire to shoot. I realized i could draw it up and take it orally. Which i did. Definitely gave me a nice buzz and I put it out of myvmind.

    Kept on with the drinking. I didn't feel like a person at all. I was either at work or at home waiting to get drunk. Doing the basic cares for my children, feeding and clothing them, bathing them and putting them to bed. But the second they were asleep i began slamming the vodka. And I really couldn't figure out why. I hated it so much and as a nurse, i knew the horrific damage I was doing to my liver and body. I had no calories from food, just liquor. Hated it so much but just. could. not. stop.

    As time went on i slowly started to try to divert more and more medications. It was very slowly at first. Definitely not addicted to opiates at this time. One day I woke up and it didn't really feel different from another day but i said i wasn't going to drink that day. And I didn't. I am unsure why this time was different, I really wish I knew.

    Well, the next day i thought about being drunk and longed for it but i had work and couldn't drink. I picked up extra shifts as to work seven days in row.

    So at that time about 9 months ago, i was heavily into opiates and alcohol. I was diverting any narcs i had access, too, using them when she got home from work and when she would run out she would get wasted again. For some reason, she was able to finally quit alcohol around this time. I'm sure the opiates and some diverted benzodiazepines kept that physical withdrawal to a minimum but the psychological w/d was still there and very real; but before I knew it a month had gone by and I hadn't had one drink. I know that may seem like a minor accomplishment considering I was still in the midst of myopiate addiction but i still struggled greatly.

    I had started injecting subQ at first and when i stopped feeling the "euphoria" from that method is when I first contemplated IV'ing it. I knew that IV'ing it would probably cross me over a line that i was unsure I would ever be able to cross back from...

    But i did it anyway. I don't need to describe that first experience as I'm sure most of you can figure out how it went. It was just 4 mg Morphine and that was all it took. I tried going back to subQ but it was nowhere close to the strength from IV. And most of you know how it goes from there. You keep needing more and more to attain the same feelings and there were several times in the last couple months where I knew I had OD'd...

    It was a few months after starting IV'ing, that I couldn't get through a day at work with out IV'ing. I had never used at work before but now I "couldn't" get through a day without injecting. I still did my job and cared for all my patients but I took frequent breaks to fix. :-(

    In the last couple months, the "high" I would get was so minimal, I mean truly like lasting only ten seconds and I just felt so ill all the time. Nauseated and exhausted. I have experienced no pleasure from using for a couple months. I had tried to quit on my own countless times, without telling my husband or employer but the w/d's were just so unbearable and If I was at work with access to the instant cure for my suffering... I just couldn't not use.

    That was when I knew that if I wanted to get better, I had to do the drastic thing and let my employer and husband know... and now I'm here. Jobless. Depressed. Scared to death that my husband is wanting to divorce me even though all I want is to get back to the woman he fell in love with.

    I went to the gym yesterday and my endurance has definitely declined but I was still able to eke out 3- 5 minute jogging intervals. My body was screaming in pain and my lungs, too. But I kept telling myself, your mind is stronger than your body. If you can push through this, you can push through anything! Hell, if you can push through childbirth unmedicated you can push through most suffering and I have done that twice.

    It was a very empowering work-out. Kept telling myself, screw my employer I can do this without them. I actually worked out for 60 minutes in total which might seem small but is a huge first step to getting my self back.

    Sorry so long! Just couldn't stop typing!

Comments

  1. alwayshighkris
    Re: The Beginning of Her End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today.

    I only joined few, short weeks ago, but this is by far the most gut-wrenching post that I have read.
    Arguably, the biggest reason for my gut-wrenching reaction is how completely amazing and good that you are coming across. You are an addict. Fine. You are dealing with it courageously. You will win. Hopefully the first time. But what you have is heart. You are a quality, well educated and loving woman. It is absolutely a travesty what your hospital did to you. You did not fail them-they failed you miserably. Yeah, you went off the tracks. You are allowed to be human.

    But even if I quit all my drug use today, I would not be half the woman you are. The patients that need you will suffer most. And that is because of your addiction. But, in my naïve eyes, the hospital is equally responsible. They were horrible to you and the patients will suffer. You just might lose your license. And perhaps that is right. But I can absolutely guarantee you that you will win this battle. You are already showing the will and spitting in the eye of the drugs.

    And after you are feeling better, when maybe your career dreams are no more, you will be led on a new path. A path equally enriching. And you will be of great service. Your husband MUST put aside any personal feelings of betrayal (?) and man up. He is not the one. You are. You need all the loving, personal forgiveness, and strength. Not Him. He needs to deal-like yesterday. He love you so much and he is scared, but he knows you need him. Step-up! The best to you. A long, hard road awaits. And that may be an understatement. But you will endure and win. You are good.
  2. Jungledog
    Re: The Beginning of Her End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today.

    Nurse,

    I have a few questions and please know I mean no disrespect nor am I trying to make you feel worse...I want to help you. When I first read your post, I incorrectly assumed that the issue was you had an opiate addiction and that you were working under the influence. But with your detailed posts today I realized you were high and you were diverting narcotics from the workplace. The first part is obviously a huge patient safety concern. The second part is a felony.

    So what exactly did you tell your employer? Did you just tell them you have a drug problem? Or did you admit to diverting the narcotics?

    If you just told them you had a substance issue and self-reported to the board, you will likely get a suspended license and enter an impaired nurse program. You will with time have your license returned if you stay clean. If you admitted diversion or they suspect this and could possibly prove it, you need an attorney ASAP. You can lose your license and worse be brought up on felony charges.

    It sounds like depression is a real issue. Get to a mental health provider ASAP too. It will look best to the board (and possibly the courts) that YOU sought help...not that they made you seek help. Get the depression treated. An addiction specialist would be best for you.

    I think you are very brave and that you reached out for help because you knew you couldn't stop on your own. As a nurse, you know more about addiction than most and so you knew what you needed to do. But as a nurse, you are held to a higher standard than the public. It sucks that health care providers who are addicts can't get the help and support they need. It's wrong on many levels. But the facility protected itself and now you need to protect yourself. Treat the mental health issues and seek legal counsel. Know your rights. I will be praying for you. You can beat this.
  3. Sleepynurse
    Re: The Beginning of Her End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today.

    I told my employer the truth. I knew even if i didn't admit the diversion, it would be discovered eventually. I thought it would be better coming from me but maybe I've just utterly and royally fucked myself... FUCK. FUCK. I Just wanted to get better. :( :'( :'(
  4. dating_meth
    Re: The Beginning of Her End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today.

    Sleepy Nurse-

    I'm kind of conflicted in my emotions here. Let me explain.

    In January of 2001 I was in a car wreck & had my mandible shattered, nose broken, & received a skull fracture. All total I went through 26 surgeries over the course of the next 6 years to try & piece me back together. In 2003 I was diagnosed with CRPS & began taking daily pain medication. After so many surgeries where I received IV pain meds for sometimes weeks at a time? You quickly learn the way it makes you feel, the taste they give, & the weird smell you get in your nose. On my final surgery, I noticed when I had an older nurse on my shift that I experienced none of those things & the pain was excruciating. My husband confronted her after my 3rd shift with her & asked her if she was keeping them for herself. Holy cow did that ever cause some serious drama! He ended up going home to get my pain meds & I simply wasn't going to ask her for anything else. When he returned she came in with another nurse to advise us that it was against hospital policy to keep them in my room & they had to be stored. It was almost an entire month's prescription of dilaudid.

    When you're a patient? Nurses & doctors can be really intimidating. I allowed for my medication to be stored since my husband "would be committing a crime if he took them back home as they weren't prescribed to him". 8 days later when I was discharged & my medication returned? I had 16 out of 112 pills left in the bottle. Per my narcotic contract I was forced to make a police report as that was the Only way my doctor would give me a refill so early.

    Shortly thereafter the state's attorney contacted my husband and I to let us know that the nurse had been arrested, & if the case went to trial we would be subpoenaed to testify against her. In the end she was given a plea deal.

    Now that you've revealed more of the details? I still think it was courageous of you to tell the truth, but I truly hate it for the patients if the situation was like mine. I agree with JD in regards to hiring an attorney as quickly as possible. There are good public defenders, however you Don't want one for this type of case. Does your husband understand that you may very likely face criminal charges? The best advice would be to get into some type of rehab ASAP. JD is absolutely correct in that it indeed does look much better for you to take proactive steps in showing genuine remorse vs being forced to do so. I apologize for such a long post. I truly, truly wish you all the best!
  5. Sleepynurse
    Re: The Beginning of Her End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today.

    Dating meth, you misunderstand. I never did not medicate a patient to medicate myself. All my charting and pain assessments were 100% accurate. Without giving away much detail and incriminating anyone, just know that my patients were never in pain as a result of my addiction.
  6. BeachWalk
    Re: The Beginning of Her End to Addiction/Incredibly Rough Day Today.

    Not a lot here still online at this late hour.

    I understand why you did it but as JD said you should look into protecting yourself in a proactive way. Maybe they won't press charges but you definitely want to be prepared just in case. I'm sure this is the last thing you want to deal with right now as you are withdrawing, but it's all part of the process in getting better.

    Additionally, I would write down everything you said in the meeting when you told them what you had been doing. And everything they said to you. This is really important so that you can look back on your notes. Believe me they wrote everything down that you told them. You will feel better knowing that you are prepared. Keep up the faith. I am very impressed with your courage.
To make a comment simply sign up and become a member!