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MmmWatermelon

Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox

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What are you going to cook? Perhaps something containing mmm...Watermelon? :D

Hehe, I don't know much about preparing watermelon in other ways other than its pure and perfect form...sometimes I've eaten it with salt, which can be delicious; I've also come across somebody poking a hole into the side of the watermelon and then scraping around all the innards, mushing them around, and mixing in some vodka. Then you plug it back up and let all the melon absorb the vodka...it's quite delicious an hour or two later : )

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Day 119

Nearly a month into my 2nd round of 90 days...I figure I will at least go through with a straight 90 day streak sans relapse. Then might I even consider casual gaming? I will at least consider it but I doubt I will feel comfortable with the idea, or even interested. But we'll see in a few months, right now it feels very good to put as much distance in time between gaming and myself as possible : )

November is nearly at a close...I have spent this last month with my partner and it has by far been the most rewarding month since choosing to move on from games four months ago and the most rewarding this whole year in general.

It's actually astonishing to even consider that it's already been a third of a year since the beginning of this particular segment in my journey and this journal. Things are much, much better and it feels like I am continuously on the up-slope, but are by no means easy or. I suppose life isn't easy in general but I think "ease" is something we can cultivate in our daily lives to help us meet the more challenging aspects of life. I still think about computer gaming on a daily basis, or rather I think about computer gaming addiction; I think about how it has affected me and perhaps sometimes I place too large of a burden of blame on it and things are challenging rather than just reminding myself that today is new, I nor anyone else have lived this day before, I'm not expected to know what's going to happen or what the best course to take is. What I can expect is to try my best day by day and, very important, give myself permission to know that can look very, very different on each day also; sometimes it doesn't seem like much; one of my favorite quotes that my accountability partner Alex and I both liked at the beginning of our detox was "It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop." I'm flying by the seat of my pants just as all humans are, and we are learning by trial and error, day by day. I'm aware that one of the things I still struggle with during this time is expecting things to fall into place. They don't! Life has truly done a great job trying to teach me day in and day out that you can fritter away your whole time on this Earth expecting things to fall into place, but the best I feel I can do is follow my impulses towards whatever I intuit will bring me the greatest happiness; whenever I create expectations things don't turn out the way I imagine. Sometimes they are not as good, but just as often they are amazing and beautiful in the most surprising ways. I think knowing that this will keep being so if I am prepared as best I can to see and take in that beauty is at the kind of faith I can buy into.

Did I meet all of my goals I set two weeks ago for that one week? Not fully, but they acted as helpful guidelines. I made more money than I spent, maybe saving $150. I cooked a good amount though didn't try out any specific recipes really; part of this was being frugal with groceries and only using whatever was already in the house. I found it very challenging to meet my goal of spending so many hours outside every day because it was very easy for instance to sleep in for several hours then spend the few remaining daylight of these short days cooking, house cleaning, chatting with people in the house, following the chess world championship or whatever, drinking tea. One thing I'm remembering about living with several people is that it's both a blessing in terms of always having someone to talk with, having extra treats, people to hang out with; while I also find myself also give extra time to things the others find important instead of my own priorities, easy to chat or watch movies without focus for hours etc. Sometimes I find myself acting certain ways out of fear of being judged or falling behind others who I see succeeding in particular ways every day. I've painted a bunch, maybe more every other day than every day even if I haven't been posting images on here and I've actually been finding more and more rewarding; I'm having fun and feeling like I'm getting better!

Part of realizing things are not always as expected is being honest with myself about not meeting with goals. I have a lot of new energies and patterns I'm working with here and so I'm realizing I was maybe setting my standards too high. New house, living with a partner, new housemates, completely different place...it has only been a few weeks so of course it is a challenge to figure out what feels realistic. For example, with having a consistent sleeping schedule, I now need to take into account when K wants to go to bed, the fact that she has a highly variable work schedule day to day so she gets up at various times and likes to sleep in when she doesn't have work etc. My new living situation is just a lot more dynamic day to day and I am still adjusting to the idea of needing to put extra effort into creating little anchors for myself. I think daily meditation can be helpful for this and I have had maybe a few three day streaks but honestly don't think I've had a week-long or even five day streak in the last month.

Anyway, I think I focus too much on the things that aren't going perfectly, even though lots of things have been going well. I think I have this tendency because I like feeling like I'm aware of what I need to be working on. But...still, too much. What has been going well? Things between K and I feel wonderful; I feel closer to her than I have ever felt to anyone in a relationship; I feel like we have both grown a lot during our time apart for a few years since the two years we were together! I also feel good that I've been able to find a few regular tutoring students and start having an income. Also, time spent reconnecting with friends and forming new connections, reading, doing yoga, meditating, doing art, taking walks, cooking.

During this last Thanksgiving Week K and I had quite a few celebrations  we went to! I feel good about the fact that the last five days I spent constantly being social and around people. On Wednesday we went to a local farm we've been connected to for some years and took part in an amazing potluck in a large yurt overlooking a beautiful cliffside over the Pacific Ocean. Lots of happy faces and a few familiar ones. And a familiar old cat K brought to this farm some years ago. Thursday through Saturday we spent with our two friends who were married recently in September and one of their families nearby. Also a lot of food and a lot of time lounging with lots of people I didn't know; played some chess. One amazing thing was having a brutally honest and raw conversation with my two friends about gaming addiction and baring my soul a bit. I cried some and they were very compassionate, loving, and couldn't be more supportive, as I figured they would be, they are wonderful people : ) Feels good to have a growing circle of people I can talk to openly about this and trust. I highly encourage anyone to do the same, I think it's one of the most helpful and liberating things...not feeling like you need to be defensive about it.

Take care for now and Happy Thanksgiving!

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It is great to see that so much good things happen to you right now. Thanks for sharing it made my day!

Thank you for reading, how are things going for you lately? : )

Day 128

Whoa, so many things are happening so quick right now it seems. I've been a bit stressed out by finding a living arrangement and to be honest my effort into looking at CG and such has been pretty minimal. My one month living with K which we agreed upon with her roommates is up...what I've found is through talking with a college friend of mine who has a boat on the other side of the Bay at the Berkeley Marina. He isn't using it and he is willing to rent it to me quite cheaply, but the caveat is it'll be somewhat cramped quarters, no kitchen, and there's a limited # of nights / month I'm allowed to sleep on it due to the marina limitations. I tried sleeping on it two nights ago as a trial night to get an idea of what it's like and it was pretty comfortable. So I feel like I can make it work but there are a bunch of logistics to juggle. The rest of the nights I'll be spending at K's (about 2 / week) and I've arranged my tutoring sessions (smartly ahead of time, foreseeing something like this!) in her area to be on the 3 days of the week around that. There's definitely a bit of a romantic factor to living on a boat temporarily, but I think this is taking me out of my comfort zone quite a bit...I really like having a cozy nest to come back to and somedays I feel like I just need a time out...right now I feel like I need to really be on top of my shit to be able to prepare adequately for being comfortable with the boat life. I also picked up a bit more computer work I need to get done today so I have a pretty laid out schedule today:

- respond to emails and msgs (by 10:15am)

- focus on work (until 12)

- brainstorm cooking options on camping stove so I can prepare what foods I need to buy + toiletries etc. + things to be comfortable...laundry, pack, clean and organize car etc.

- tutoring at 4 with a regular student then meeting a new student!

- drink lots of tea...

The boat is a mostly functional sailboat but the motor is broken and neither my friend nor I are experienced enough sailing to take it out without the motor. Maybe in the future... :)

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Day 142

Ok so lately chess has been getting out of control again... : P Here I am and it's 3 AM and I've been playing a bunch of chess all morning, barely got myself together to go work doing tutoring for a few hours and buy some groceries, then I came home and played a bunch of chess online until 3 AM. This is the first time I've stayed up past like 1 (and I generally go to bed before midnight now) in a few months so I think I need to check in here before it goes out of control. Things got a bit stressful during the past week. Old back pain and such issues...some anxiety, sigh. Let's focus on what's been positive:

- no gaming (besides counting chess during the past week+, which started out a little bit at a time then got to the point that it's getting in the way of my other goals for the last three days or so. But anyway NO GAMING besides chess since my last relapse around day 90 or so, so it's been 60 days! Whoo!

- Haven't looked at porn for the past ~2 months or so I think, basically since I've been living with K. This is nice...hope to continue the streak

- Been working a bunch doing tutoring regularly and actually saving up some money. At some point I was down to like 500 in my bank account with no hope of even looking into a place to rent and now I probably have nearly enough saved that I could put down a first / last month's rent, if I wanted to go the route of finding my own place (I'm looking until I find something good)

- I tried sleeping on my buddy's boat for 5 nights the other week and it was pretty comfortable even in the rain. There are a lot of logistics to figure out (one thing I'm going to do is bring a few bins or buckets for dishwashing on the deck of the boat next time, for example). I even did some light cooking on my isopropane camping stove and there is an alcohol stove my buddy had on the boat I took to K's house to tinker with. Not sure it works, but it would be a better option. I also did a bunch of cleaning of old grime to make the little storage cubbies and such more comfortable, and supplied the boat with a bunch of nonperishable foods.

- Went to a new dance group I really like in the East Bay which is near where I'll be staying on the boat. It was really fun and I look forward to going again after the holiday breaks.

- I think I'd like to incorporate chess in moderation into my time, but have it be more structured and focus on actually improving instead of playing mindless blitz after blitz. A few years ago I was reading a chess book as well as going to weekly club meetings with a friend and it was a lot of fun. Since I'll be staying near this same club I could try going again to place in a club setting and then maybe in moderation online to practice certain aspects of my game. I need to think carefully about this since it easily slips away form me, but I really can have a lot of fun with it.

 

Stuff I need TO DO:

- really need to figure out my health insurance through social services in the new area where I live. This is a pain in the butt, yes, but I need to fight for myself and hopefully make the system work for me. Even if I have to jump through hoops and go to the office in person because they are all confused in transfering my information from the old county's SS office. This is my goal for tomorrow since I probably won't have any tutoring in the afternoon, if it all. The goal is to eventually see someone who could diagnose what's going on with my back, maybe do physical therapy. I also have enough moneys now that I could see a chiropractor, but I'd feel better at least getting a clear diagnosis from a osteopath first anyway, which hopefully could be covered by insurance.

Also for tomorrow:

- finish a letter I started

- meditate / do some gentle yoga when I wake up in the late morning.

 

Good night all!

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@MmmWatermelon 

congrats_maik3.thumb.gif.a71bc37258aae3d

On around 60 days lol

I used to live with a man who made his living by gambling on chess.  He gave up his college, family, home for chess.  He was very close to a Grand Master. He played on the street in New York City in Times Square.  There used to be a long row of backgammon and chess boards there run by Bobby D.

Every once in a while the police would come along and tear it down.

Most of the men who played there didn't have homes.  One of the men would climb over top of a building down into an abandoned building to sleep at night.  They found him froze to death with $900 on his person.

My Ex would come to bed with Chess books on strategy and a little practice chess board that had pockets on it so the pieces wouldn't fall out.  It rolled up.

You know how that makes a woman feel when a man brings a chess board to bed every night?

I would seriously look at how many hours a day you study chess, play chess and ask yourself what is the end goal here?

 

Edited by dandielionous

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@MmmWatermelon 

congrats_maik3.thumb.gif.a71bc37258aae3d

On around 60 days lol

I used to live with a man who made his living by gambling on chess.  He gave up his college, family, home for chess.  He was very close to a Grand Master. He played on the street in New York City in Times Square.  There used to be a long row of backgammon and chess boards there run by Bobby D.

Every once in a while the police would come along and tear it down.

Most of the men who played there didn't have homes.  One of the men would climb over top of a building down into an abandoned building to sleep at night.  They found him froze to death with $900 on his person.

My Ex would come to bed with Chess books on strategy and a little practice chess board that had pockets on it so the pieces wouldn't fall out.  It rolled up.

You know how that makes a woman feel when a man brings a chess board to bed every night?

I would seriously look at how many hours a day you study chess, play chess and ask yourself what is the end goal here?

 

Hi dandielionous, thanks for taking the time to read. I've visited New York City once before and played with the group of players in Washington Square Park; there are also similar groups of people in San Francisco and other parts all over the world, and I've probably lost a couple of bucks on a handful of occasions to some surprisingly good players. I'm sorry this is the first thing you associate with playing chess, but let's not confuse playing chess with the problems of poverty and lacking a home, these are totally different things on a different scale. Chess isn't what's causing people's misfortune in the first place, and in some extreme situations it might even be the one place some people find a sense of community that keeps them away from worst things they could be getting mixed up in on the streets of inner cities. I also don't see your friend's gambling problems as something stemming from chess; I've been around a bunch of chess clubs over the years and it's something people generally do for fun as a hobby,  an art, a passion that they enjoy. I've never myself met anyone with a chess gambling problem amidst hundreds of chess players I've known.

Your response struck me a bit as a pointed attack (I might be making assumptions) based on your negative personal experience with a chess player on your life, but I will answer your question: my goal would be to have a relationship with chess where I'm spending a few hours a week on it as a hobby: probably going to a club to play once a week or once every two weeks and hang out with other chess players, and maybe spend a little bit of time outside of that studying my games and seeing how I could improve. I grew up going to a chess club in Eastern Europe and feel like it's a part of the culture from my part of the world and my own life; I also really enjoyed going to a club weekly for about a year with a friend after college; he was a similar skill level and we would play together for fun once in a while. I read my single chess book as an adult during that time and enjoyed the sense of improvement I steadily saw during that year. Sometimes I'd also meet interesting people at chess clubs, like an old Black Panther guy who came to the club every week to play, one crazy old Russian man, a math professor, young kids under 10 who could completely wipe the floor with me in a humbling fashion, and others. Anyway, I've been debating with myself whether to treat chess like other games or not, but it's something I definitely feel like I have a real relationship with and would like to include a bit of in my life, even if not as a main focus. But yeah, I definitely don't want to be the guy doing that to his girlfriend (and really to myself, I don't wanna be that guy period!)  like you say, so I'd really like to shift from playing online like I have been to in person over-the-board play and keep things in moderation.

Anyway, hope you can change your view on chess and not think of it as one guy's unhealthy relationship with it! I know I'm guilty for placing the blame on video games and not taking responsibility for my own behavior and lack of control over them, but at the end of the day it's us who make the choices and not the games.

Day 143

Today was great! I slept in as needed and did some yoga outside in the late morning; it was sunny outside, which was a rate treat for winter, and warm enough to even show some skin while stretching, which was relaxing. Then I climbed about 40 feet up in a redwood behind the house, because my back didn't feel like it was in pain today and these days I try my best not to take that for granted, it was fun! I fixed myself some breakfast and made a smoothie for later. Then I called the Social Security Office and learned it was closing sooner than I thought and I'd only be able to get there a half hour before it closes. I decided to go anyway and hopefully get some of the paperwork done; it was surprisingly empty and as soon as I got there someone was able to help me; he suggested I also apply for food stamps, which I qualify for, which would somehow make the application process go faster, so I did. Now I have to go in tomorrow morning for a four hour appointment to talk with a case worker and sounds like I'll be on my way to having things sorted out, hooray! It's a bit of a drive but hopefully I won't need to go in again after this. I got back home just before sunset so I drove down to the beach and walked around on the sand barefoot (this also feels really good for back pain) with the high tide waves crashing around on rocks, beautiful. I drove about a mile north to the different end of the beach to see if a coyote who likes to roam around there at sunset almost every day was around. I ran into K who had just gotten off work and also decided to drive the extra mile to see the sunset, she said she had seen the coyote yesterday. Back at home, she said I'm invited to have dinner with her neighbor and her neighbor's family which was really delicious peppers stuffed with rice and a goood salad. We played a fun card game called basa, drank tea, and ate sufganyiot from an Israeli bakery in SF, which was delicious. The family was really nice and we laughed a lot, really relaxing evening.

Grateful for:

- sticking with my plan and also surprise delights

- delicious food

- Social Services office guy being super helpful

- blue skies and a clear night sky, warm Northern California winter sun

Edited by MmmWatermelon

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Haha sorry if I sounded a bit cranky when I wrote that. I figured you didn't mean anything by it and thanks also for sharing your own story!

My apologizes I did not mean it to be a personal attack against you. :(

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Day 145

Today was really great and active, I felt like I did a lot of things that are aligned with my overall goals: exercising and working on my health, connecting with people, old friends and new, spending time in nature, saving some money.

I had a tutoring gig over in Berkeley in the late morning so I woke up early and did some yoga. I've been doing a shoulder loosening 20 minute routine and it feels like it's starting to take effect a little bit more and more every time; I made myself a bomb breakfast of sauteed veggies: squash, beets, beet greens, kale, and some vegan sausage; and prepared a bagel with cheese and salmon to take along for lunch. I made plans to meet a mushroom hunting friend who lives in Oakland because my tutoring gig was near a patch of forest where we found a ton of chantarelles two years ago and late December / early January seems to be the peak of the season for these delicacies here in the Bay. After tutoring, which went well, we met up in the rainy forest after I drove through probably the thickest fog I've ever seen! The bushes on the opposite side of a two lane road were literally half obscured by the fog when I was driving along the crest of the Oakland and Berkeley hills. The rain was really coming down and I forgot to bring my rainjacket but I had a few layers of fleece and under the trees it wasn't too bad. It was nice seeing my friend whom I hadn't seen in a year and a half and hearing about her life in recent times. Then, as soon as we got to our old spots we started finding tons of chantarelles and got really excited. We kept foraging for two hours or so then she had to go drive to her family's for Christmas vacation, while I plunged further off the trail into the forest looking for chantarelles under the oaks. I found a bunch more, as well as a really interesting purple mushroom called a blewit I was already familiar with from hearsay and books but I've never eaten before, so I'm excited to try that. I probably ended up with about four or five pounds of chantarelles, which is worth between $70 to $100 or more in grocery stores if I were to buy them (but I never do, cause they are free in the forest : ) I picked up some curries on my way home from my favorite restaurant in the East Bay then drove back to K and hung out with her and some friends for the evening playing Catan and eating cookies. One of our friends got excited about the mushrooms too so I gave her a quart container to take home and cook.

Grateful for:

- the bounty of the forest, and looking forward to eating so many meals with chantarelle mushrooms for the next week!

- getting a $5 bonus for gas from my tutoring gig

- naan & curry, so yummy! Also, this really sweet old Indian guy who works at the curry place, he always makes my day with how nice he is

- friends

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Day 187

Whoa, I didn't post on here for all of January so here I am! Let's see...what's been happening in January? I'll try to summarize:

I've been continuing to work as math tutor with a few regular students week-to-week. I'm spending little, and paying no rent \ using food stamps so I'm able to save most of it, but I am still looking for a couple of more students to work more hours (meeting a new student in a few days), or possibly a part time job that involves more moving my body around.

I was dividing my time between living on a buddy's sailboat and staying at my partner's house during last month, and at the end of January I upgraded to a different buddy's boat which is much nicer: more spacious, enough room to stand, bigger bed, an electric stove, alcohol oven, benches and table for guests, more private berth. I paid my previous buddy by giving him a bunch of wild chantarelle mushrooms I found and cooking a big two pots of chicken soup for him and his housemates, which was fun, now they all love me : )

I started playing in a weekly chess tournament last week (one loong game per week). I'm trying to replace playing online chess with playing in a club tournament; I definitely find myself very easily being drawn to playing online chess when I have time to kill between things, so I am still working on where to strike the balance on this one...anyway, tonight I got paired to play with the first national master I've ever played a classical time control game with, uh oh.. :P (the game was last night since I didn't finish posting this and I ended up losing, but at one point I was a pawn up and with better position if I just hadn't missed a simple move I had, according to computer engines I had a 2 pawn advantage or so against a national master (!!) so I'm happy with how I played even though I ended up losing on time : ) I've also been getting together with a few friends at a friend's house the last two saturdays and we play chess on a few boards while someone is playing music on the guitar or something. It's been really nice and seems like others are interested in doing this on a regular basis, I've been enjoying it a lot.

Something else I'm really excited about is starting a carpentry apprenticeship of sorts with a local carpenter from the outskirts of the north bay. K and I went to his studio during a local artists' open studio event back in December and we were e-mailing for a little while trying to figure out a deal that could work for us both. What we ended up on is that basically I could go work at his studio for $25 a day whether he's around or not (once he trusts that I can handle myself safely on the machines), and if he is, I can ask him questions while working on my own projects. Seems like a pretty amazing deal considering his extensive knowledge (he sells his pieces for thousands of dollars). I just went in for the first time a few days ago and started working on a few cutting boards: two that needed gluing so I left them to finish next time, and another one that I finished on the spot. They were very simple, basic projects to refamiliarize myself with working on shop tools since it's been a number of years. I got to use a jointer, planer, table saw, arm saw, bandsaw, big shop belt sander, and smaller hand tools already on the first day! Fun, fun, my biggest goal is not to cut any fingers off :D (I did scrape a bit of my palm skin off on the big belt sander, oops, but it's mostly healed in three days). Besides that, as far as creative pursuits go, I've been continuing to make random small watercolors in a pocket journal here and there. I put a bit more effort into making an envelope-sized birthday watercolor card for my mom which I was really happy with and she really liked. I posted some of my recent watercolors in the art section of the forum if anyone reading this has any interest in seeing them (thanks for checking them out and reading this!)

Finally figured out having insurance in my new county sometime in January (we'll see how long that lasts with this f-ing president...) so I was able to schedule a covered chiropractic appointment as well as physical therapy during the next two weeks. Back pain continues to be kind of a bummer despite lots of good things happening in life. I am continuing to do a bit of yoga at home but I am hoping to get a more thorough diagnosis and ideas of what would be most helpful.

So I have done another cycle of 90 days! Hooray! I had a minor relapse in early January while I was living on the boat and it was raining for a week straight lol. I played a bit of Settlers of Catan online and even downloaded an old dos game called Master of Orion and played one evening. Then I told myself "what the heck am i doing?" and deleted it. Oh well, mostly game free for 180 days besides some small relapses : ) I think I am getting better at not being too rough on myself and rolling with the ups and downs.

Oh yeah, I've found another weekly dance group that is similar enough to the one I used to go to in Southern California and I like quite a bit. So I have been going to that pretty regularly on Sundays. Besides the chess and dancing, I've been socializing with people in K's house and neighborhood, and reconnecting with old college friends in Berkeley, which has been nice.

 

I wish everyone the best in their game quitting journey in 2017! You can do it!

Edited by MmmWatermelon

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Day 1 of Re-Detox (since we love counters on this forum :P )  

So, hello there, it's been about two months to the day since I have posted on here! Things unfortunately aren't going too well right now and I've been having what's been my most serious relapse for sure in the last six months that has lasted a week or so. Argh, I am feeling really, really shitty about this and something's gotta give : (

So what's been happening? The last five months, after I had more or less completed an initial 90 day detox have been a different chapter in my life filled with its own joys and challenges. I finally managed to get healthy enough to trust that I could support myself and left my parents' house whilst they were in the middle of divorcing, quasi moved in with an old girlfriend I rekindled a relationship with and also living part time on a friend's boat. I've managed to save some money through math tutoring and living frugally and that has somewhat relieved my stresses related to finances at least for the immediate moment. I have had some occasional relapses for a few days here and there once or twice a month playing too much online chess or even downloading a couple of old DOS games in all honesty but spending so much time with my girlfriend it had been a lot easier to get back on track and not get too caught up in it for very long. I've done at least a bit of reconnecting with old friends, though I still have a lot of work to do in the way of socializing when it isn't easy and convenient to do it through my partner, since we have a lot of common friends it mostly ends up that way.

Anyway this last month has been kind of rough because I've basically just had a flu for like a month or so : ( I was first sick for two weeks, then got better for like 2-3 days, then felt sick again for a week, then better again for a week or so even going camping, and now I have been really sick again. It's really messed with me a lot since I had just started physical therapy appointments and chiropractic appointments and I wasn't able to go because of just having severe coughing fits, fever, etc so much. I've also had to cancel a lot of tutoring appointments and other times I was just hacking hacking in the library feeling kinda dumb for two hours, bleh :\ I felt like the physical therapy was maybe starting to help things with my back so it is frustrating that this had to come up, as well as making it hard to get any proper exercise. The worst of it though (and unfortunately this one my choice...) is that I started creeping in more and more online chess into my daily routine while spending so much time at home and eventually some (seemingly innocent) old dos games. It became almost a kind of an excuse to myself: "I am so sick, what else am I gonna do, I'll just do this for a few days until I feel better." About a week ago I had an argument with my girlfriend because we had talked about how I am trying to work at getting over these habits completely and she does not want me using the space of her home to just support these addictions. This was after I had been up all night playing Master of Orion for like 2 days. I even lied to her and told her I had fallen asleep on the couch rather than admit I had been gaming. So she asked me to leave her home until I could use it in a respectful way as I HAD agreed before; yes I guess I basically went back on my word from before. 

So yeah, the last week exactly since last Thursday night I have been staying on the boat on my own and it's been binge-fest most of the time except for maybe 1-2 days when I was trying to do yoga, go on walks, etc. to clear my head. I guess I've just been feeling so shitty about letting down this person I love and not sure where exactly we are headed together since we haven't even spoken since that time a week ago :( . I think...this really struck a chord also because it really brought out something I had been feeling already and was kind of bothering me, namely that I felt too codependent on my partner and her supportive home environment...not sure if I'd be able to function properly if left to my own devices. I'm unfortunately doing way too much to prove myself right during this past week : ) I suppose whether this relationship will continue or not is irrelevant to the fact that I need to be functional and stop this compulsive gaming. I need to be doing my best to take care of myself whether on my own or not since my health is very significantly affected by my actions...

So what is my plan of action...?

-First of all I need to get my sleep schedule on track. What a horrible mean thing to do to myself to not get proper sleep when I am feeling ill but be gaming instead!

-Second, I need to work on a serious clean up of my boat kitchen and make it a pleasant and proper place to prepare healthy meals. This is really important to me and my feeling of well being. It's some extra work compared to a conventional kitchen so I can't be lazy about it. I've at least done a thorough cleanup of the bathroom sink area and the carpet to make it more pleasant to do stretches on the floor (also have a yoga mat). I also need a new electric water heater since the old one broke and warm tea and hot water for a water bag is important on this boat exposed to the elements (it's a cold rainy night tonight for example and I sure wish I had a hot water bag!)

-There's this cool job opening literally across the street working with kids doing carpentry projects. Maybe this could be up my alley, I think it is a summer gig so maybe I could apply to keep my options open if I want to end up staying in the area. I'd like to still apply to the backcountry ranger position I've mentioned in the past, still haven't sent an application yet.

-Meditate, yoga every day instead of game and play online chess

-I'll try to post on here daily to track my progress. I've been really noticing how I keep telling myself "ok delete all this shit and don't play it again" and it's really easy for my motivation to waiver. I think this forum has been really helpful with that in the past so I will lean on it again, since I've been feeling really lonely in this last week of relapsing...

-try to mend this relationship, which mostly involves mending things with myself 

-stop ignoring friends who are being kind enough to reach out to me knowing I'm having a hard time

Edited by MmmWatermelon
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Day 2 Re-Detox

So today went well, I slept a lot and feel like my flu got a lot better, the cough isn't as bad and generally felt a bit more energized. I went and got myself some soup for lunch and also bought some groceries. I had a long hour and a half phone conversation with my girlfriend and we talked through a lot of difficult things, and I think things will be ok between us, though admittedly we have some things to work on. We're gonna plan on hanging out Monday and see how things go. I worked a bit of on cleaning stuff in the boat afterwards and I'm doing a bit of a sanding \ varnishing project for my friend in exchange for staying on his boat, in small steps. I did a bit of varnishing today but just for a bit since it started raining. In the evening I I hung out with two friends and had tea \ dinner, we had some good soul talk and they want to help do what they can to support me in kicking this addiction and also minimizing this relapse. It is such a huge thing for me to be able to talk to close friends about this now...I didn't even imagine being able to do that except with women I was in romantic relationships with before GameQuitters and felt close enough to be vulnerable. What I am finding though is that friends can be very supportive, understanding, and also that everyone can relate with going through difficult times and coping in unhealthy ways, even if that doesn't mean gaming for everyone personally. We also sang a bunch together since one of my friends has been working on his guitar a lot lately and likes to sing with others which was really fun.

Quote of the day: "If not now, when?"

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Good to see you again, friend! Still waiting for that list of suggested recipes we discussed a year ago, just saying ;)

As both a consummate relapser in my addictions and sickly mofo, I sympathize with you man. Take it easy, but be never complacent. One step at a time!

You know already, but we have your back. Stay strong!

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Day #0 again (for the like nth time :) )

Hi GameQuitters, Watermelon here again...

So I didn't keep up with my journal on here a couple of months ago when I last posted and I generally haven't been even looking at the forum much. I haven't been relapsing as bad as I was back then (until very recently again! guess that's why I am back!). For April, May, and June I probably had several relapses that lasted a couple days each and then I kept getting myself out of it and so on...kind of an up and down cycle. Some things have gone quite good, and a few things I'm particularly proud of that have happened in recent months are:

- I've mended things with my girlfriend and we have been on good terms and spending a lot of time together; we've had some good adventures lately

- I went on a week and a half trip to the French part of Canada (shoutout Cam) with my dad and sister, visiting some old family friends from Romania as well as a distant aunt who shares a great grandparent with my dad. She was funny and full of stories, it was nice. Our family friends have a 7 year old I really enjoyed spending time with. It was really challenging for me to spend so many days without having alone time whenever I wanted it, and also walk around lotsa touristy placed all the live long day, AND I DID IT! Hooray!

- Something I was particularly happy with recently, which I finalized the other night was replacing my own failing starter motor on my Honda Civic. My car basically has had trouble starting for the last month or so and I did some Internet research and such to figure out how to replace my own starter motor. It only cost me about $160 to get a remanufactured motor (and I'll get $30 of that back once I turn in the old one) whereas getting it changed at a Honda shop would've cost somewhere between $500-$700. And it was really fun, like Legos for adults! Even though I think this is an easy thing for someone who knows about cars, it was definitely the most advanced car mechanicking I've done on my own!

- Learning how to use a wood lathe a little bit at the wood shop

 

Ok, so some things are going well, but...lotsa things are challenging and stressful right now! Like I said, I've been relapsing a bit harder recently, specifically in the last two weeks or so. Lotsa things are transitioning right now and I'm feeling really stressed out...my partner has left her job and is going traveling; her housing, which is also the place where I spent like 2/3 of my time was subsidized by her work so that means it isn't available for me anymore either. Within just a few days of that my buddy whose boat I have been living on the other 1/3 of the time called me to tell me he had sold it on the spot b/c he had gotten a good cash offer and he has my stuff in his room to pick up! Thankfully I've been staying at my sister's apartment for the last ten days or so, while she is out on vacation, anyway, but she's coming back into town tonight and to be honest I don't have much of a plan of where I'm even living beyond the next night or two! I've also been spending more money than I've been making the last two months or so and I've been slowly whittling down on my savings... :( What feels worse right now though is that instead of using this time wisely at my sister's in a relatively relaxed and easy environment while she's out of town, I've been gaming hardcore again, rather than figuring out sleeping arrangements with friends, or looking for work, or figuring out my stuff at all...I've been so stressed about it that I guess it's been easy to run away from dealing with it and go into gaming mode. So now it's all coming to a head and I've left myself with dealing with everything at the last minute as my sister is coming back into town.

Well, I'm gonna have to take a step back and tell myself I'll figure it out...I've been pretty resourceful so far and basically living without paying rent for the last 9 months...it's gonna be hard dealing with my girlfriend not being around as much because she has been such a huge support for me...but thankfully she is only going on small trips here and there for part of the summer but she will also be around sometimes. Anyway, looking back over the last year, it has been nearly a year since I started my most serious 90 day detox to date. If I look over that year as a whole, it has been in the times when I've chosen to do real things with my time and try my best that I have had the most memorable times, and felt best...it's easy to keep thinking "oh, if only I'd had stayed away from games in that time period, and that time period etc., think of how much more I could have accomplished...." So I guess with that mindset, today's as good a day as any to start over again, for the sake of the future...

I think one reason I've decided to post again is because with leaving my girlfriend's neighborhood, I also feel like I lost my most meaningful community in my life, between her and our housemates, and the neighbors. I've been doing lots of journaling on paper, probably more consistently than ever before, but I think I might need to come back to the GQ forum for the time being mostly for the sake of community!

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Day #1

So today went ok as far as days go after a day of binge gaming. The cravings are real but I've learned by now they get a lot better in a few days. I don't sleep great while binge gaming so I've just felt super tired today. Grateful that my partner was in town to drop off some stuff at her parents house, which happens to be near, and we hung out for some time eating food, went to the community pool for a couple hours and splashed around and played in the sun. My body doesn't feel great and it's telling me I haven't been taking care of it (mostly not sleeping great, at least I haven't been eating a bunch of sugary things!). I spent most of the day cleaning my sister's apartment since she just got back from being out of the country in the evening. I called up a couple of friends and I've got a plan of staying with a friend in Santa Cruz for a night or two.

So the game I've been really into lately and playing unstoppably is one called Faeria...it's got some similarities with Hearthstone but is also played on a board, which I suppose appeals to my chess playing side. Today wasn't completely game free, I just played a single game that lasted about 10 minutes then shut it off. I'd honestly be happy if I could keep playing in moderation, but it has never seemed to work for me...

Goals for tomorrow:

- maybe spend at least an hour or something starting to think about places to live / work I could be applying for.

- download some music onto my phone from a band on bandcamp I really like

- send an e-mail reply to an awesome person who recommended me some books and recommend some books to her as well

Grateful for: - there was some kind of event organized in my sister's apartment complex for which people were handing out free bbq food

- splashing around in the pool

- partner bringing me treats like pie she made with blackberries she picked; summer...

 

 

Edited by MmmWatermelon

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Days 2-5

Day 2: I hung out at my sister's for most of the day, went to the pool and stretched some, took a nap. In the evening I went to my friend's in Santa Cruz and we cooked a taco dinner with another friend of hers. It was delicious but sadly her friend got rather drunk after drinking most of a bottle of wine we were having and was a little loud at night. I learned over the next few days he's got some issues and she is mostly letting him stay in her apartment because he doesn't have any options right now but she might be getting ready to kick him out...had a good time with her though! Didn't do any gaming this day.

Day 3: hung out in Santa Cruz and took my friend's four month old puppy to the off-leash beach nearby, which was fun. Lots of people and other dogs were giving him attention since he's super cute. Played in moderation a couple of games maybe totalling 20 minutes then made myself quit. Also had some productive time in the afternoon looking at some outdoor internships, though I found a lot of resistance was coming up while doing this and urges to game. In the evening we had some chili and all watched a kinda cool silent movie. Friend's friend was kinda drunk and obnoxious but did my best not to take it personally. He doesn't do well at night it seems.

Day 4-5: helped my friend take care of some chores and walked her dog, cleaned her porch (she's disabled and needed help with some stuff around the house). Her friend was sober and mostly silent and then gone on the last day, which was nice and allowed for some more quality time with my friend. On Tuesday evening I cooked a big pot of chicken tortilla soup which was appreciated and made me feel I'd done something good that day. On the last day I was talking to my friend about gaming and how she also plays some games like Civ sometimes (though in moderation and seems like she hasn't played in a while). I ended up showing her a Civ-like game for a couple of hours which I rather used to like so poop on the detox : ) but at least I spent is socially / largely watching her play. 

Grateful: - I've been recuperating sleep the last couple of days, and feel a lot better because of it

- Got to reconnect with a friend I hadn't seen in a few months and help her out by talking about her situation with her drunken friend

- Got to meet her puppy and spend a lot of time with him, as well as her two cats which were also a blast

- Lots of healthy and delicious food the last few days

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Be strong! Start believing that you can change yourself! Love yourself. Take care and be good on yourself. Write down everything what you want to do and do it! 

You are here so long and you still fighting! Your problems are deeper. You must start facing your own fear and emotions. You are a man! You can do it! 

 

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