Friday, August 31, 2012

Let Go!






By 

Chris Newcomb, M.Div.

I remember the first time I was taught how to water ski.  I was with a bunch of college friends using a friend's boat at a popular lake and we were taking turns water skiing.  Finally my turn arrived.  I slide the skis on my feet, jumped in the water, grabbed the rope and waited for instructions.  They explained the instructions for proper rising and remaining on top of the water.  It seemed simple enough to me:  rock up and stand up!  

SPLASH!  Face first right onto my stomach!  Poor directions?  Failure to listen?  Poor directions, of course!  The other thing I didn't realize was the longer you hold on to the rope the harder your face gets smacked into the water which is like pavement when a boat is dragging you on your belly across the water using your face as a basketball.  Needless to say, I did not water ski that day! 

The key to being free was letting go.  I had to choose to let go of the rope in order to be free from my face being dribbled across the water.  Even though I knew that was the case, somehow I believed I could pull myself up off my face and start skiing.  I've always had a thing for trying the impossible.  And the improbable.  And often times, the stupid!

Are you holding on to something that is beating you down physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually?  Letting go of the things that drag us down can be a very liberating experience.  Is your face getting used as a basketball across the water of life like mine once was on an ill-fated water skiing experience?  Let go!  Lose your pride!  Free yourself!  Let go! 

Letting go doesn't mean you are a failure.  It doesn't mean you are a quitter.  It means you see the obvious and choose to fight in a different way.  The best way to not get bitten by a Great White is not to swim with Great Whites.  No one would think less of you or your lack of courage for such a move.  Give yourself a break and let go!  By the way, have a great Labor Day and really let it go and have some good, clean, sober fun!


At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  We help people let go of their addiction to drugs and/or alcohol so they can grab a hold of the wonderful like sobriety and recovery offers.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wishes

Wishes are a staple of growing up in America.  As a kid, I wished I could personally meet Santa Claus at his North Pole Headquarters to discuss future toy options and an increase in overall gifts for myself as well as my friends (hey, I'm a generous guy).  I also wished I could see and possibly pet the proverbial Easter Bunny but that never happened.  SPOILER ALERT:  I found out quite accidentally that my stepmother was in kahootz with the Tooth Fairy as her representative to put money under my pillow after a tooth loss.  One night, I guess I was sleeping heavily and she couldn't get the money under my pillow.  She whispered, "Chris, lift up your head."  I did and then woke up and rolled over to see her walking out of my bedroom.  I slide my hand under my pillow and found the dental cash prize.  Needless to say, I wished I could've had a few moments with the Tooth Fairy to explain the need for better parental training.  

Have you ever had a wish?  Perhaps you wish for better relationships.  A raise?  Less stress?  To be a rock star?  To have more time to yourself?  To have better health?  For a big, fat slice of pepperoni pizza that tastes great but is fat-free.  Hey, we can all dream, right?!?

Every day at work, I meet people who have one wish: to get clean and stay clean from drugs and alcohol.  They have come in beaten and broken by a vicious disease that destroys their health and causes havoc for their friends, family, and work environment.  They barely have enough umph to proclaim that wish but in signing up and coming to detox we hear their wish loud and clear!

Never be afraid to wish.  If you want something bad enough, you first have to dream about it or wish it would come try.  Once you do that, desire is born.  When desire is born, then a plan can be created.  Once a plan is created, action can be taken.  Action can create magnificent results. 

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  We wish all people would choose to experience sobriety for themselves.  While we wish all who had an addiction issue would come to us for help, we know many will not.  However, we will not give up trying to help people who do want the help.  And, should people change their minds and seek treatment, we welcome them with open arms!  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Be Nice. No, Seriously! Be Nice!


Everybody likes nice people, right?  Most people I know do not like to be around jerks.  Life can be difficult as it is without having somebody with an attitude making it worse.  The question is are you the jerk or the nice person?  

It's hard to be nice.  Sometimes people don't deserve it.  Sometimes you don't fee like being nice like when your driving on the highway and the 'nice' little old lady' in front of you is going 45mph.  You are more inclined to tell her how you feel with a certain finger than to smile and think, "Isn't she so cute driving 45mph.  Poor thing is probably afraid to drive much faster because her eyesight is failing."  Of course, she shouldn't be driving that way because someone could get killed.  However, most of us have little patience for that sort of thing and although we may not treat her unkindly we certainly think about it.  And, the truth is, in order to be nice to someone, you have to think nicely of them first.  

I'm glad you're reading this article.  I hope that you are having an awesome day.  I hope that everything is going right in your life.  I also hope that if there are issues and problems in your life that you are able to find the appropriate and helpful solution(s).  

I hope that your life is richly blessed.  My hope for you is that you move ahead in your job, your relationships, your health, and your finances.  I hope that you pass this article onto someone you know so they can be encouraged too!  

I have to go now but I hope you feel a little bit better from reading this article.  After all, I may never see you face to face.  However, that doesn't mean I can't be nice to you even if it is through a blog article.  So, many blessings to you and yours.  Take care.  Fare thee well.  Remember as Plato once said, "Be nice.  Every person you meet is fighting a hard battle!"

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  We believe all people should experience the nice feeling of sobriety in their lives.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Are You Necessary?



By

Chris Newcomb, M.Div.

Three cheers for opposable thumbs!  I'd like to think that my opposable thumbs make me both necessary and relevant!  What about you and your thumbs?  Necessary?  Relevant?

In regards to recovery, are you necessary?  That is, do you matter?  Of course you do!  The truth is you have all the intrinsic value you will ever need just because you are you.  You are an original.  There is no one like you.  You bring a perspective to the world that is unique.  You have gifts and talents that the world needs.  You have experiences no one else has had.   

And you are completely relevant!  First, you are relevant because you have experience with addiction and recovery.  Second, you are relevant because you have entered sobriety.  Last, you are relevant simply because you are you.  And you are not outdated, ever. 

As you go day-to-day in your sobriety, how can you make yourself necessary to someone else?  That is, how can you be of service to other people in recovery until you are necessary in their lives.  This might take one or two visits or acts of kindness.  It could take years.  There are people who need help so you shouldn't have a problem finding someone.  

Why would you want to be necessary to someone?  Two reasons.  First, you make a connection with that person and you genuinely help them with their problems and issues.  Second, you help yourself by breaking your isolation and by reinforcing to yourself the importance of maintaining sobriety because you can't do much to help anyone when you are drunk and/or stoned!   

Why would you want to be relevant to someone?  Being relevant is important because it builds relationships.  Sharing your experience, strength, and hope makes you relevant to someone else in the program who may be struggling with abstinence from addictive substances.  

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  We believe all people should experience the gift of sobriety so that they may live a necessary and relevant life both to themselves and those around them.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!



Thursday, August 23, 2012

Imagination: Power for the Taking


By

Chris Newcomb, M.Div. 

I've always wondering what it would look like if we all walked around with 'thought bubbles' over our heads like they have in cartoon strips.  You know what I'm talking about?  The little bubbles coming from Lucy's mouth telling Linus giving up his blanket is the best thing he can do for himself.  Can you imagine if everything we thought was broadcast to the greater world around us?  I think many of us would feel a little embarrassed if we're honest with ourselves.  Fortunately, our thoughts are safe and bubble-free!

However, that doesn't mean we shouldn't dream using our imagination!  For example, the Orville brothers had to see in their mind's eye what a plane would look like.  They had to know deep inside through their imagination that flying was possible.  It all started with a dream, an idea, a hunger for something new.  Voila!  They created a plane that flew.  

Imagination is the seed of destiny.  It is what gives us power to move forward.  This applies in recovery as well.  Imagination can give a recovery person an incredible amount of power, belief, and optimissim and thus increase the breadth and depth and length of their sobriety.  

Imagine this:  Living your life completely sober.  No drink.  No drugs.  No hiding.  No fighting.  No police.  No drug deals gone bad.  Just completely living sober and receiving the gifts it has to offer.  Sound too good to be true?  It's not!  Believe and it and go do all you must too to make it happen!

Imagine this:  The desire to use is completely lifted.  You wake up in the morning and no longer want to use or drink.  You feel free on the inside.  You'd rather paint.  Or go to work.  Or go to school.  Imagine it.  Believe it.  You can do it!

Imagine this:  Spreading your experience, strength, and hope with the greater community in your area about the miracle of recovery and encouraging them to embrace their imagination to cultivate the belief that they deserve recovery and can experience it too! 

A famous saying states that, "Imagination has always had powers of resurrection that no science can match" - (Anonymous).  I believe that is very true.  With imagination, anything is possible.  The most long-forgotten, ill-conceived notion can be resurrected through imagination.  The possibilities are endless.  Imagine being clean.  Imagine being sober.  Imagine living the best life you can live.  Imagine.  Imagine.  Imagine.  Now.  Go do it!  

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  If you have imagined being clean, let us help you turn that into a reality.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!














Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Deadly Opana – Endo Pharmaceuticals Have Re-Released a Drug They Knew to be Very Dangerous




  By 

Peter Coleman, M.D. 

Opana abuse and overdoses are significantly up throughout America, especially in rural communities.  In only one year, fatalities have risen over 100% in Florida and other states.  In places like Scott County, Indiana, Opana is now responsible for over half of all the overdoses.  Opana is killing people all over the country in record numbers.  There seems to be something about this new drug that is even more dangerous that OxyContin, even though that seems hard to believe.

Opana is not a new opiate, but it has recently been widely re- released by Endo Pharmaceuticals in 2010.  Its generic name is Oxymorphone.  It turns out that Endo Pharmaceuticals was awarded a patent for it in 1955 and they first released it in the USA in 1959.  However the company withdrew it from the market in 1972 after it became clear that many addicts were trying very hard to get it.  There was a lot of pressure from regulators.  It was clear that this was a dangerous drug.  To voluntarily take a drug off the market is not a step that is taken lightly.

When I came to practice medicine in the US in 1983, Opana (Oxymorphone) was not available.  But I quickly heard about a drug that drug addicts loved to get – it was called Dilaudid.  Dilaudid (usually pronounced “dilordas” on the street) is generically named Hydromorphone – you could say a chemical cousin to the Oxymorphone that is now re-released as Opana.  It was very well known by physicians that addicts loved to get “dilordas”.   Doctors I worked with warned me about any patient asking for dilordas by name.

The doctors I trained with told me that there is one easy way to tell if someone is a drug addict – they will ask for “dilordas” by name.  Sure enough, I hadn’t been practicing very long when my first patient came in asking for dilordas.  Others soon followed.  I found it kind of amusing.  They would tell me they needed a pain killer and they would casually bring up the name dilorda, and ask if I had heard of it.  They would often tell me that some friends or a family member had told them that it worked so well and they would like to try it.  If I resisted prescribing it they would then often tell me that they were allergic to all the other pain killers.  If I continued to resist prescribing it they would become quite upset and even get angry.  It became obvious to me that Dilaudid is a very pleasurable drug and a very addictive opiate.

And now, the cousin of Dilaudid – Oxymorphone - has been re-released as Opana.  I guess that Endo Pharmaceuticals changed their mind about whether Oxymorphone was too dangerous to be available.  Sure enough patients love taking it.  The street price for one tablet has been reported at $140 – a sure sign of its perceived value to addicts.

Unfortunately, Opana is not just a very addictive drug; it is also a particularly dangerous one.  There are a couple of reasons why Opana is so fatal.  First, milligram for milligram, it is very strong, as compared even to OxyContin and other pain killers. I have had patients tell me that the equivalent dose of OxyContin 80mg is Opana 10mg – eight times as strong.  That is, if addicts need OxyContin 80mg to avoid withdrawal, they are able to use only10mg of Opana.  Since many addicts will primarily look at the number of mg they are taking this could easily lead to overdose.

Second, Opana is 10 times stronger when it is used IV.  In medical terms, we say that the oral form is only 10% bioavailable.  In practical terms, this means that if a 40mg ER (Extended Release) tablet is injected IV, it is the equivalent of taking 400mg of oral Opana.  That is a huge dose and usually a fatal dose.  The manufacturer reports in their literature that the best dose to use IV is only 1mg at a time – not 40mg!

Third, the drug interacts with alcohol.  If alcohol is taken along with Opana, the blood level becomes unpredictable and can rise over 270%.  So if people use alcohol along with their Opana, they are often getting twice as much Opana as they thought they were – a potentially fatal situation.  Also alcohol is a sedative and adds to the sedation and overdose potential.

Unfortunately, it looks like Opana is here to stay.  US sales of the ER formula are running over $600 million per year.  With sales like that, it makes it very difficult for any company to take their product back off the market!

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  In particular, as the article suggests, there are many people suffering from addiction to Opana.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!

Squirrels Make Choices?





By

Chris Newcomb, M.Div. 

 Apparently so!  There is an old saying that is both hilarious and true at the same time.  The saying is, “Indecision killed the squirrel”.  Short and sweet but what a powerful point it makes! 

 Recovery from drugs and alcohol addiction can be a lot like the squirrel stuck in the middle of the proverbial road.  Does he go backwards or forwards?  Can he weave through the traffic to safely arrive at his destination yonder across the road?  Similarly, the addict is navigating a new direction by starting down (or in this case across) the road to recovery.  During the journey, there is temptation to go back, temptation to stop in the middle and hang out, and even fear of what is on the other side. 

 Recovery is premised upon action.  It is, in fact, all about choices.  Actions, of course, are just the result of choices made.  If that is true, than our choices become a very important factor in the outcome of our lives. 

 It is fairly evident that people have a freedom to choose one course of action over another.  We are not automatons although we may feel hemmed in, trapped, and powerless by the power of a drug/alcohol addiction.  With this in mind, it is very hard to make the case that we just “become” addicted.  Sure that is what happens BUT it is AFTER we make the decision NOT before.  Therefore, it is incumbent upon the addict to embrace a life of positive choices in order to stay recovered.  That, of course, requires a plan! 

To choose one path is, by default, to not choose another path.  That’s obvious, right?  Not so fast!  Most people miss the obvious when it comes to decision making.  Therefore, whenever you make a decision to forgo recovery work, you are, in fact, making a decision to head toward relapse.  It may not be intentional and you certainly may not have a future relapse on your mind, however, to not build up your defenses is akin to what Darth Vader said to Luke during their epic battle… “You are unwise to lower your defenses!”

Therefore, it is wise to make a recovery plan to live out each day.  Good questions to ask yourself include the following: What types of people will you associate with now that you are sober?  What places are safe for you to go and which will you avoid?  Are there relationships you need to sever or at least put on hold for the time being?

Furthermore, it is wise to consider what positive choices you can make each day to ensure your sobriety.  Do you need to alter your behaviors in more positive ways (i.e. avoid bars; attend “sober parties”, start a hobby, etc.)?  How many program people do you need to call a day?  Do you check-in with your sponsor every day?  Will exercising be of benefit to you today?  How about journaling your feelings so that you are not “emotionally constipated”? 

Finally, life is all about choices.  The lure of alcohol and drugs can be overwhelming at times but remember you always have a choice.  If curiosity killed the cat, then indecision definitely killed the squirrel.  So, remember kids, look both ways when crossing but don’t stop ‘til you get to the other side or the Mack Truck of Addiction will flatten your progress in recovery!

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  Once they clean, they are free to make healthy choices to continue living in sobriety and recovery.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!
            

Lighten Up!






  By 

 Chris Newcomb, M.Div.

"LIGHTEN UP!"  Every heard those words before by someone who thinks your 'Serious Quotient' is a little to high on any given day?  Yeah, I've been there too.  It's actually good advice if we know how to do it.  

Most of us take life way too serious.  We think people are watching us, they're thinking about us, they're talking about us, and that they care about us 24/7/365.  Newsflash:  It's not all about us.  Often times, our friends, family, and acquaintances don't care about us at all.  That is, they are focused on their own problems and really could care less about ours.  We are often too hyper vigilant and paranoid when it comes to other people's opinions about us.  

How do you lighten up?  First, stop taking things so seriously!  You can't run the world.  You can't fix the world.  You can't control other people either.  The only person in life you can change is yourself.  

Second, start having fun!  Find a hobby or hobbies to partcipate in with a friend(s).  Look at all the fascinating things there are to do in life if we will only give them a try!

Third, stop beating up your 'inner child' that wants to be free to play, to roam, and explore the world around you.  Embrace play.  We are all grown-up kids and the more we stay tapped into that child-like place the more spontaneous and joyful we will feel.  

Last, let it go!  Whatever it is that's bothering you, let it go!  If you can't let it go, ask for help from your higher power, a family member, or a friend to support you so at some point you can let it go.  Keep a very short list, preferably an empty list, of people who have hurt you or who you perceived have hurt you so you can clear it up quickly and move on so you can enjoy life!

Today is a new day.  What can you do today to help you lighten up?  Play with some Legos?  Color in a coloring book?  Play basketball?  Tell a funny joke?   There are so many....just pick one and roll with it.  

At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs.  People usually feel a weight taken off their shoulders and they are able to lighten up and accept life on life's terms.  If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiatesalcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869).  Help, hope and healing begin here!