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MmmWatermelon

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  1. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Day 34:
    Ugh I've been in a terrible / irritable mood and feeling depressed for much of the past couple of days. I feel like everything is going upside down. I wasn't really enjoying staying at my friend's student house; his mom is in the hospital and had just received the news she is terminally ill the other day so he has of course been gone much of the time. I enjoyed the time I got to spend with him and had some good conversation but I felt awkward walking around his house with 20ish other people I didn't know; sometimes this might not be a problem and I've been there and even enjoyed chatting with people but I feel like such a ball of stress right now: my mind is churning with trying to figure out the fact that I don't have a home to live in, very little money, trying to accomplish some basic goals of job applying and saving a little money doing DoorDash but I can't seem to destress and just relax at all the last few days. I went for a longish hike yesterday then did an hour of yoga. I guess that was the most relaxed I felt and was doing decently but then in the afternoon I started getting hungry and felt awkward about using the coop's kitchen so I instead sat in my friend's room by myself watching a movie, playing a bit of chess, randomly browsing the web. I avoided going into the kitchen until it was late at night so many people weren't around. I was listening to people having an intelligent conversation in the room next to me and just felt very left out...I started comparing myself to these people who are graduate students, younger than me, seem intelligent and seeing myself as a failure, in my early 30's and not having my shit together whatsoever. I even watched some let's plays to kill time because I was miserably hungry but afraid that if I got out and engaged with people my frustration at my situation would just bubble out and people would take it personally. I seriously feel like I cannot have a good human conversation right now because of stress and my mind being so preoccupied and that is just creating more stress...hah. Anyway, I had designated yesterday a rest day because I was stressed out working and my back was hurting from driving so much. At least the hike and yoga went well, but not sure how really restful it was otherwise.
    Today I decided to leave there because I was afraid I'd just relapse with gaming if I stuck around in that awkward situation and my friend wasn't coming back anymore before leaving on a trip. I went back to DoorDashing in the late morning, my back feeling better and while I'm waiting for an order to be ready in the restaurant, I was doing a crossword puzzle in my car; something I picked up somewhere so I'd have something to do while waiting and not automatically go to my phone. An old guy parks next to me and like HITS my car with his door then loudly complains to me through my open window that I hadn't parked properly. I think people normally think of me as a pretty mellow guy but I kind of fucking lost it inside. I asked him in an annoyed voice that if he didn't think he had enough room to get out, why the hell didn't he park in one of the literally HUNDREDS of open spots in the parking lot that is mall size, but chooses instead to park there and just HIT my door? Sure I was parked with one side of my car over one of the double lines of the spot, but there is literally an open uncrowded parking lot before his eyes. I sat fuming, reparked so I wouldn't have to see him again, then very seriously contemplated rubbing a bunch of wasabi or soy sauce from the food order I was picking up on his door handle, but decided I'd try to let it go. Though I didn't in my mind really. Anyway, I took a break and went to the library to look at job applications. Found a job that interests me in a national park on the East Coast, but I feel like I can't shake this feeling of anger of frustration that is sitting on my chest. And it doesn't all have to do with this guy earlier today, I'm not sure where it's all coming from. This application is due in two days, it would be a pretty much dream job for me at this time but it does sound physically demanding, like I may not be qualified enough, and it would involve relocating. I have a really hard time JUST APPLYING to jobs without thinking endlessly about them to begin with. I feel like while applying I'm spending more time fantasizing  about all the possible scenarios that could arise in my life than actually focusing on the task at hand of just sending a darned resume. Anyway, I later went back to DoorDashing and I realized I had lost my credit card they give me to pay for the food orders. I didn't need it for the morning work so I had probably lost it at my friend's house while doing laundry. It is a far drive and most likely I'll have to go get a replacement one when DoorDash offices are open, which is also a far drive. This frustrated me further because I wasn't able to work tonight AND I'M JUST SO FRUSTRATED WITH...EVERYTHING...RIGHT NOW...ARGHHHHH. I think I need to find a new therapist..., I am not finding an adequate amount of constructive ways to vent right now
     
    Update: I continued working on this latest job application; it involved a pretty time consuming questionnaire and I will have to put together a cover letter. I feel pretty good about my resume and I feel like my degree is perfectly relevant to the job, but they unfortunately require either some graduate level courses or a year of field experience in a similar job. I have some volunteer experience that is relevant and hopefully I can argue in a cover letter that I'd be qualified. I feel a bit better about doing something productive. I also have an interview on Monday for a part time job at a bakery which would be something to tide me over until I find a more serious job, without needing to do DoorDashing all day long :\
    Goals for tomorrow:
    - shave
    - drive to DoorDash office to pick up a new credit card
    - finish and submit this job application
    - probably work some DoorDashing in evening if time allows
    - go splash in the creek if time allows to relax
     
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  2. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Kill it with Fire and Brimstone!   

    Hi, I also had a lot of trouble falling asleep \ just keeping a regular sleep schedule for a while while detoxing the first times. What helped me personally at first was Yoga Nidra guided relaxations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIl-HUHbxEI (more free recordings on yoganidranetwork.org if it tickles your fancy). Keep on it, you're doing great!
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  3. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Tom2's 2nd relapse   

    Hi Tom, learning to control your emotions has to do with allowing yourself to feel them, not ignoring or burying them. We can learn over time and through patient practice that we don't need to run away from or act our intense emotions, as painful as they may seem. A practical way to relieve stress and anger that is built into our bodies: crying and laughing. When we are caught up in anger, we have thoughts about wanting to hurt something or someone and maybe ourselves. Ultimately anger hurts ourselves either way and we may regret acting it out on others. Ask yourself what the emotional pain is really about, and let yourself feel it. It may feel intense, but you may end up "crying it out" and be free to move on from it. Rather than let that pain steep in your body and mind, ask yourself what is really behind it? When this person said hurtful things to you, she is not the source of stress and anger, but that is the response you are choosing to the situation at hand. Being an "addict" may be a small part of you (and all of us) but it is not the whole you and how much you choose to continue identifying with that idea is up to you. Choosing to identify less and less I think is similar to the idea of "giving yourself permission" to stop gaming, as Cam mentions in his TED talks. As humans, we all have many parts and identities that make us up, some of which are painful and shameful and some of which we are proud of. Just like I'm sure you have parts of you that you are proud of. Of course we want our friends and people we are in relation with to acknowledge and strengthen our positive parts, so it would be painful for someone you consider close to talk to you in the way this person did, essentially reopening a fresh wound. It may not feel like we have a choice when our emotions are so built up and immediately reactive, but I think it is an empowering perspective to realize you could respond differently in a way that feels satisfying. If you consider this person a close friend, ask yourself, would a close friend say hurtful things that she did? Maybe she was temporarily angry because of the situation at hand and wouldn't normally. In that case, you can maybe relate to her in the way that you feel angry yourself now. Or maybe she has something to gain by you being an addict and feeling better about herself and doesn't have anything to gain by you moving on. Something to ask yourself, I obviously don't know either of you!
     
    The moments of stress and challenge are the moments you learn to let go of using gaming to deal with that. That is the response we've all learned to cope with emotions and of course you naturally want to bury those feelings, which feels like it's worked in the past...I can say from personal experience that every time I go through a detox a lot of buried emotions come to the surface and my emotions just feel more intense in general. But emotions can be a great source of strength, they're not just "stuff to deal with," once you learn what they are trying to tell you about what you want in your life. Keep on it!
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  4. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Good advice Mettermrck, I've been practicing Yoga Nidra, which is essentially a guided relaxation / meditatiin while lying down, most often at night or when the need arises. It works better for me than sitting meditation because sitting for too long often causes me back pain.
    To answer your question about Doordashing, it is...similar to Grubhub and a bunch of other services that have popped up in recent years, kind of like Uber for food. Restaurants that don't have their own delivery system often use it. I pick it up from the restaurant and deliver the food to people's homes. It can be quite expensive for them; as a dasher I get paid a flat fee per delivery ($5 normally, up to $7 during lunch and dinner hours) plus tips. It is pretty decent in my area, I make $20 / hour semiregularly. It works well for me personally rather than Uber because I have an old, beat up two car door that doesn't qualify for Uber...but food doesn't care!
    SO! Day 30 of this streak. Feels good saying that. i've been gone since my last post nearly, on a roadtrip with my girlfriend. We visited some friends in Sacramento on the way, then did a lot of hikes and hot springing / camping in Eastern California. I spent as much money as I made during the days before the trip. I feel in better shape from doing some long-ish hikes at high elevations, and like my sense of possibility feels increased. I had a few minor anxiety episodes during this trip, usually in crowded, fast paced restaurants right after some really serene, quiet mountain environments that made it seem a little too shocking and surprising to be in a super high-sensory environment right after, but I managed to just stay present with the anxiety sensations without running away, recognizing them for what they were. My anxiety is severely impacted by gaming, and feels largely manageable when I feel like I've put some time between my last binging session and the present. The trip was mostly awesome, though challengining, and just a bit soured at the end by having an argument with my partner while on our way back to the Bay. She's going travelling for at least a few weeks or longer and we aren't sure where either of us will be living in the fall. I think we managed to patch things up somewhat before she left, but I was being hard on myself yesterday for saying some dumb things.
    been doing lots of doordashing yesterday and today. Grateful ive been getting good tips. My sister came to visit for a few hours earlier today and we had a nice packed lunch at a waterfall we walked to, that was very nice. Im staying with a friend from tomorrow night until Wednesday, which I am excited for having my own room to do some good stretching and a bed to sleep in for the first time in a while.
    whoo day 30!!
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  5. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Friday, Day #15:
    I've been working a lot doing DoorDashing these last three days to make a bit of money and feel like I could go on this trip with my partner. I ended up making a few hundred dollars, taking breaks and such here and there. Today I got kinda stressed / tense by the evening from sitting /driving so much and whirling around from place to place, plus trying to plan for the trip ahead. I quit a bit before I was planning to and went to our friend's house we are leaving from in the morning and just did a super relaxing hour of slow yoga (a favorite audio file). I felt chill enough to pack and organize what I needed for the trip afterwards and hung out with some friends in the evening. Still feel a bit like my nervous system is a bit overamped but I feel good about how I've been doing these past couple of days and happy about the amount of money I feel like I can use for this trip now.
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  6. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Edit: Tuesday 7/25/17 up to Day#12 since latest relapse.
     
    Things have been going really well, for the most part. My partner / lady friend came back into town after vacationing with her sister and we spent the last week doing a lot of fun things: beach, going swimming at a lake in the forest where I saw an otter swimming nearby us, and we picked thimble berries, we went to a hot springs, and on a camping trip with friends of her co worker on the Russian River for a few days of more swimming and a super fun canoe ride up the river one afternoon. I'm really grateful I've been having a full week of what I think summer is all about: playing in water and sun and eating summer fruit (including watermelon, yummm). Last year I was upset with myself because I had spent the summer indoors basically gaming with few exceptions, this is way better : )
    Yesterday I also went to the woodshop where I've been hanging out now and again to work on the chessboard I started a while ago. I basically finished the board minus some oiling and fine sanding and I turned out my first three pawns on the lathe!! I already felt like I got a bit more comfortable with the lathe in the process. They MOSTLY look alike aka "artisanal." The wood lathe is super fun.
    The downside to these good times is I'm pretty broke (though I spent almost nothing except food and gas for this fun vacation), I have less than $500 in my bank, yikes! My back & shoulders have been bothering me quite a bit from canoeing and lathe work, which is quite physical and involves standing and bending over. What I've missed most in these nomadic couple of weeks is a quiet private room to retreat to with a yoga mat and do some super slow relaxing yoga. It's hard for me to relax completely without having my own little nest to retreat to. I just spent some time at the library applying to a part time job; I was trying to do DoorDashing today but was getting no food orders so I gave up on it. I hope to work a bunch this week and hopefully make some money and then next week join my partner on a camping trip to some hot springs in Eastern California; it would be fun if I felt a bit less stressed about finances / had more of a plan because she'd like to go to some places I spent time in 2-3 years ago when I worked at a summer camp in that area and she hasn't been there at all before, so I'd love to show her these spots.
    Some of the times during this past week I've definitely gotten intense cravings to game, especially when I'm at the library. I was even tempted to download the latest game I was playing today, even looked at the website. I just reminded myself that now it's about two weeks since I've gamed and I wouldn't have been able to do all these fun things if I had been in binging mode. Sometimes I experienced a lot of contrasting lows / highs in my moods. The lows I sometimes attributed to craving the dopamine rushes and sometimes to just my general depression / anxiety that is more chronic and pops up now and then. Just keep on trying my best I suppose...
    We have been staying with friends in two different places in my partner's old neighborhood when we weren't camping this last week. I'm going to stay in the woods again for the next couple of days on my own and looking forward to having some alone time actually to hopefully rejuvenate whatever parts of me need that.
    Take care everyone, hope your days are filled with things that bring you joy and gratitude!
     
     
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  7. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Thanks for the encouragement Mettermrck! 
    The last threr days, especially the last two have gone quite well! I rallied myself on Wednesday and went to the North Bay, where I had before seen a spot I thought would be nice to camp in. I think I'd like to just spend some days intermittently sleeping outside between staying with ftiends; summer is lovely in this part of California and it basically never rains until September or so. Got to my spot a few hours before sunset Wednesday, about a mile off the road and felt like I could finally relax and disconnect from technology.
    The next day I hiked back out in the late morning and went to get groceries, took a shower in the previous therapists office building (felt a bit funny doing this, she retired about a month ago and I had noticed how there are showers in some of the bathrooms, since I figured it wouldn't bother anyone, there being a bunch ot bathrooms, and publicly accessible, I took advantage of this). Later on I went to the library to send some emails and charge my phone; was tempter to play a bit just from being on my computer but i stayed focused. In the late afternoon and early evening i worked some driving for doordash and made decent money from getting good tips all night. I hiked back in to my campsite just as it was getting dark and spent a few hours reading.
    Today I sleptma bit in and relaxed and read a bit where I'm camping. In the early afternoon I hiked out, bought some soup, and decided to spend the afternoon at a local nude beach since my back was hurting a bit and waking / lying on sand always helps a bit. It's also a gorgeous beach called Black Sands. I had a whole section of beach to myself (the nude part, kinda only locally known, involves walking over some small cliff so is kinda remote and with some very cool rock formations. Water temp in the ocean was amazing, the sun was blazing so I spent a few hours splashing around, lying in the sun, eating melon and stretching. In the evening worked again a few hours and made good money again. Two great days! Im getting a bit lonely after camping by myself so I was trying to make some plans with friends in Berkeley tomorrow night, or at the very least ill go dancing there tomorrow night.
    ps: also very grateful there are tons of ripe blackberriea along the trail to my camp so ive been munching them for breakfast. Time to head back now before it gets dark, I do know a mountain lion was spotted in this area in the spring
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  8. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Ok so I went to the East Bay from Santa cruz the previous night to pick up some stuff from a friend and ended up staying with him in a guest room. I sadly stayed up all night playing games because it was so comfortable and I was by myself...I think as a way of coping with my anxiety and stress about not having a stable place to live and hopping around so much from friend to friend. I also stayed here most of the day today and binge gamed...back to day #0! : ( I just deleted everything I had installed game-wise cause I really need to get my act together. Gahh!!
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  9. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    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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  10. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    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...
     
     
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  11. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    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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  12. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    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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  13. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    Day 1 of Re-Detox (since we love counters on this forum )  
    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
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  14. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic 1000 DAYS CHALLENGE   

    :\ it happens, I just had a similar two day relapse right after my last recent forum post and having a great week in general. Just one or two shitty days I guess but then I ended up being really pissed at myself for it, so I know how you feel. Well the sun is still shining, life goes on. I request investing my portion of the money into a healthy snack for yourself.
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  15. MmmWatermelon added a post in a topic Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox   

    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.. (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 (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!
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