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Update — Aug. 20: Currently 40 days out and counting. Recently had a madness descend on me and almost blew it — details here.

The nifty table below (nota bene: I copied the HTML coding from Infinite Summer. Thx, dudes.) tracks my progress toward a tramadol-free existence via a gradual decrescendo in daily mgs. from 300 (6 pills), or thereabouts, to zero. I suspect I’ll be adding to this calendar as the days go by — after all it’s not like you hit 0 mgs./day and then all of a sudden you’re done and can just walk away. Like check it off your list or something.

Date Projected Actual Comments
June 30 4 pills 6 EPIC FAIL. As this was my last day of work I should have marked it down as a holiday or feast day and budgeted my drug intake accordingly.
July 1 3 3 Win!
July 2 5 3 EPIC WIN! with qualifications. On this day I beveled the edge of the cravings via some natural hippie shaman stuff that only grows in like, Bali, which allegedly has opiate-mimicking properties, and which was given to me by a close friend.
July 3 3 2 Win! Although the same qualifications applying to July 2 apply here as well.
July 4 3 3 Keeping an even keel, on the 4th no less.
July 5 2 2 The taper is really beginning in earnest, now. The snifflies and hot/colds usually start hitting a few hours before I’ve scheduled my daily dose.
July 6 2 2 Lethargy — that’s really the appropriate word. You’re not particularly tired but you feel heavy, just heavy, all over, and I’ll tell you what — you don’t feel like doing a damn thing. Relief arrives at 6 pm sharp with your daily allowance and suddenly you’re ready to take on the world.
July 7 2 2 Fuck yeah.
July 8 2 2 Today, for whatever reason, was a real ball-buster starting as soon as I woke up. Instead of taking a full 2-pill dose in the evening I broke it up, taking one in the AM and one in the PM. I think this proved to be a smart move — see below.
July 9 2 1 Definite win.
July 10 2 1 Hells yeah. I think I’m over the hump — seriously. July 8 was the worst, and I suspect that the step down from 3 pills/day (which was still giving me a decent PM buzz) to two (which wasn’t) precipitated a mini-withdrawal episode culminating on the 8th. I’ll write all of this up in a post shortly and get into some more detail.
July 11 1 .5 Getting ahead of the curve. Why? For kicks?
July 12 1 0 And here we are at Day One, a full three days ahead of schedule. This would almost certainly explain the Cormac McCarthy dreams last night.
July 13 1 0 Day Two.
July 14 1 0 3
July 15 0 0 4
July 16 0 0 5!
July 17 0 0 6
July 18 0 0 and to ∞ and beyond…

So, look: This thing only goes up to July 18 not because I’ve been on a binge of crushing tramadol pills and snorting them through my eyeballs these past few days, but because I’m still at zero and will still be at zero for the foreseeable future and beyond. I’m in the market for some kind of widget counter thing that will track my days for me, since an ever-climbing number of Sober Days is a lot more impressive than a static daisy chain of goose-eggs. Any suggestions?

8 Comments leave one →
  1. July 17, 2009 9:07 am

    How has it been going since the 13th? This blog is a very good blog — I only found out about it last night and already I am feeling involved in your efforts to quit/rooting for you. I read IJ back in 97 or thereabouts and loved the first 2/3 but did not understand the final portion — then lent it to a friend who destroyed the book utterly so no question of rereading. But this infinite summer thing is getting me interested again, and more specifically your blog is making me think I should reread IJ just as soon as I’m finished with my (so far 18-month-long) Saramago jag.

  2. infinitedetox permalink*
    July 17, 2009 11:12 am

    Hey, thanks for keeping me straight on this. What happened was the table formatting got fouled up somehow so I couldn’t enter anything new, and if there’s one thing about HTML that gives me fantods it’s working with tables. But I’ve got it cleaned up now. Barring some cataclysmic screw-up on my part I can’t imagine that ticker’s ever going to top zero again. I’m looking for some kind of day counter widgety thing that would make more sense at this point, since now the game is less “how many drugs did you take today” and more “how long have you been clean without losing your mind.”

    You know, I’ve never read Saramago but your posts are making me interested — I might have to give him a look as soon as IJ is wrapped up.

  3. July 17, 2009 2:31 pm

    Good deal.

  4. July 30, 2009 12:17 am

    I’ve been following your posts and wanted to just drop in to say I hope you’re doing okay.

  5. infinitedetox permalink*
    July 30, 2009 6:07 pm

    Thanks for checking in:) I’m doing pretty darn well, all things considered, and am going on 2-and-a-half weeks opiate-free, which is almost certainly the longest such stretch since some time in ’04.

  6. Amy M. permalink
    August 2, 2009 12:34 am

    Just wanted to let you know I love the blog. Very thoughtful and well-written. I’m rooting for you!

  7. August 19, 2009 12:07 am

    Geez, this page is beautiful. Congratulations.
    Keep Coming Back. Hang In.
    Whatever you need, I’ll say it.


  1. Taking stock « Infinite Detox

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