Battle Journal

Skittelz

Member
Day 41

I am married, we have been together since we were 19, and we are 39 now. She is a great woman, and both 100% aware of the PMO issues, and supportive of me in this journey.

I am 41 days into my reboot, as you can see on the header. I started rebooting in February, but I had a few slip-ups and relapses that set my count back a little bit. But I'm on a good streak now, and I am building up some good momentum. I have noticed great improvement since I passed the 30-day mark. I am more attentive, I have better self-control in other areas, and I have more energy. I also am finding enjoyment in the simple pleasures of life again, like I used to. Other people in my life are seeing the difference as well. My wife has told me a few times that she has noticed an improvement in our relationship and sex life, and my friend said yesterday that I seem happier these days and not so worried about everything. The urges to look at porn still come and go on a daily basis. I will have time periods where it doesn’t cross my mind for days at a time, and then I will have days where it does. But I stay busy, and I am keeping myself honest and clean, and I count that as success.

I am a chronic pot-head, I have been since I was very young. I am a hippie at heart, and have always loved my weed, but it is becoming an issue for me. So I am also trying to control my marijuana usage, and finding that it is actually more difficult than not using porn. I have been noticing since I started rebooting that when I smoke weed, my sex drive is greatly increased. It makes me horny, brings on sexual urges, and makes it harder to control those urges. And it makes sexual fantasies much harder to control as well. Usually when I am high, wife and I will have a lot of sex, but she is on her period at the moment so we have not had any for about a week. Usually she will give me a handjob, which is a great release for me, but it is hard to not drift into more sex fantasy during. I kind of feel like getting high when we are not able to have sex is adding an unnecessary temptation and playing with fire.

I am a construction worker, and I am nearing the end of my 5-year apprenticeship. Next month I have to take my Journeyman's test. I am allowed exactly 30 days to study, and then the test is an open book, 6-hour test that is deceptively difficult to pass. Most people who take it fail the first time, and have to retake it. There are some who pass on the first go, but they are rare. This test is a big deal, so I will be putting everything else on the back burner for the next month, and focus on studying so I can move forward with my career. I am trying to not get high during this period of time, but I have already failed twice in the last week. I need to take that part seriously, so I plan on adding that to my journal entries to keep me focused on maintaining sobriety during my study/testing period. In the past, when circumstances required it, I have quit using for a few weeks, or a few months, or in one case – two years. So I know I can do it, it’s just an inconvenience really. I know I can live without weed, I just need to wrap my head around it.

I have some confusion about sexual fantasies. I used to think they were bad, because early on in my reboot, they were simply a mental re-run of my favorite porn scenes. But as time goes on, and recovery continues, they have not been porn-inspired. I am starting to think that my sexual fantasies are somewhat natural, because they seem to come from my imagination and not necessarily from porn. Ever since I started masturbating as a child, I have always used my imagination, so I believe those fantasies may be a part of my sexual self. My goals in rebooting include eliminating the influence that pornography has had on my brain, and returning to the brain that existed before I became a porn user. I feel that as long as my fantasies originate organically from me, and are not just me replaying porn scenes in my head, then that is probably ok. At any rate, they don’t seem to be going anywhere, and I don’t want to continue to hate something that simply may just be a part of who I am. Is it possible that I am just naturally kinky? That my fantasies are just a part of who I am?
 
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Skittelz

Member
Day 42

I had some cravings yesterday, which I haven't had in a while. Maybe I was bored, I don't know. They were stronger than usual, and lasted for several hours. I fired up the chainsaw and got to work cutting down shrubs and working in the garden instead of caving in.

Today is going good. The sun is out, it's hot but there's a breeze so not too hot. The new job is going well, everyone at this shop seems to be good people. I'm in a good mood with plenty of energy.

Nothing else to report
 
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Skittelz

Member
Day 44

I notice today that since I started this path, I have entered a period of intense personal growth and development. Just making the one choice, to quit porn and masturbation, has blossomed into other areas. I have read more books these last few months than I have in years, and I have started to develop a healthier lifestyle and good habits. I get up at the same time every day, take better care if myself, and I have been able to study diligently for my upcoming test. I still have a long way to go, but I am happy and content with where I am today also.
 

Blondie

Respected Member
Isn't it a wonderful thing? Having all this time on your hands to get your life together? It's ironic that we seek out porn or other substances to not think about our shity lives; yet by doing that very thing, we have no time to actually fix them!

Four years ago I started this journey, and though I've had a few mishaps along the way, the amount I've accomplished in my life over these last four years is amazing, and so much of it has to do with not looking at porn anymore.

Hard work takes time and diligence, and pays off with great dividends after many years. Porn is short term thinking at its worst, with no benefits at all, and destroys all long term goals in their tracks.

May your improvements continue!
 

Skittelz

Member
Isn't it a wonderful thing? Having all this time on your hands to get your life together? It's ironic that we seek out porn or other substances to not think about our shity lives; yet by doing that very thing, we have no time to actually fix them!

Four years ago I started this journey, and though I've had a few mishaps along the way, the amount I've accomplished in my life over these last four years is amazing, and so much of it has to do with not looking at porn anymore.

Hard work takes time and diligence, and pays off with great dividends after many years. Porn is short term thinking at its worst, with no benefits at all, and destroys all long term goals in their tracks.

May your improvements continue!
I agree completely about the wonders of having more time to straighten out my life. For me, it goes deeper than just porn tho. I have been an addict all of my adult life to multiple substances ... alcohol, cocaine, opiates, porn, etc. I have been in various stages of recovery now for about 5 years, peeling back each layer of the proverbial onion. Each layer grants me more time to address the next layer, and so on. I don't think we ever actually finish the work of peeling back the negative layers, we just get closer and closer as we continue to work at it.

Thank you for the correspondence tho, I really appreciate it! Coming on here to bare your soul on a public forum can be scary, and it feels great to receive feedback from others who are walking a similar path.

Stay strong!
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 47

Last night was Friday, which is usually when I dig into my stash of Marijuana edibles that I have stored in my freezer. So my head was ready for it, and pushing me that direction. I was very tired, and I knew if I just layed around and did nothing I would cave to to pressure to get high. So instead I got a few bags of soil, manure, and some mushroom compost; then I mixed it all into my garden beds and prepared them for planting. I managed to get some Jalapeno, Serrano, Tabasco, and Cayenne chilli's planted, as well as some okra. And I stayed sober!

I'm not permanently quitting weed, just taking a temporary hiatus from it to clear my head for my upcoming test. Today I want to get as many hours of studying done as I can, so not getting high last night is greatly helpful towards that goal.

I also got laid last night (yay!) because the wife is finally done with her semester and was in a celebratory mood. I still had the same fantasies in my head during, but not as much as usual. They were more like background noise, not the main event. It seems like they are fading away with time, but I can't be sure. At any rate, I notice that I stay hard with less effort now, and after I climax, I stay erect for quite a while after as well.

Tomorrow we are doing 12 miles on the river in the canoe, and I am super excited for it. River trips are one of my favorite activities, and with the extra time I have now that I don't watch porn, I hope to do more of them.
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 49

Yesterday was a lot of fun, pretty much a perfect day. We had a very relaxing day on the river, and there were very few other people, so for the majority of the time we were alone. We saw a huge amount of wildlife, definitely more than usual, probably due to the lack of crowds. We saw 2 Bald Eagles, a few Eastern Watersnakes, and another lime-green snake that I have never seen before. The water was crystal-clear, so we also saw countless fish and turtles, even some huge softshell turtles bigger than dinner plates.

We had sex once we got home, and I am excited to report that we tried a new position successfully. We have not been able to try new things for years, because I would immediately go soft if it wasn't our usual doggy-style. But this not this time, and I take that as a good indication that I am on the road to recovery. The wife and I are both very pleased with our new-found passion in the bedroom -- it is a very rewarding feeling to feel young and excited with someone that you thought you were getting old and bored with. I owe it all to eliminating the energy and libido that was wasted on porn.

This morning I woke up refreshed, energetic, and in good spirits. I was short on time, however, so I only did minimal stretches, not the full routine.

I hope to have a good, productive week, and get more studying done in the evenings.
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 50

Once upon a time, I thought 50 days was a major accomplishment, but now that it's here it just seems like another day. I actually don't have a "number of days" goal anymore, it has morphed into a "never again for life" goal. This is the same way every other addiction has been for me, at first I had a short-term goal but eventually it became a permanent abstinence from a given substance. With drugs and alcohol, this required constant vigilance at first, but eventually became an automatic habit for me. I can feel the same progression happening with porn as well.

Yesterday I received some sad news that really messed up my day. I found out that an old work friend of mine died from a fentanyl overdose a few months ago. It really hit me hard, because he had been clean from meth and heroin for so many years it seemed like he was truly past it. But then, one day out of the blue, he started using again, and within the week he had a fatal overdose. His daughter and wife are crushed, and so am I. He helped me so much when I was sobering up, and was someone that I looked up to. None of us even knows why he went back to it, or what caused the relapse. And we never will. It's so fucking sad the way some people never escape the chains of addiction.

As a former addict myself, it scares me to think of all the times that could have been me. I have been very fortunate to not have overdosed myself, and I know I have been very close to it on many occasions. Addiction is one of the most terrifying ordeals I have ever been through. I know what it feels like to look for happiness inside of a tiny bag of powder, or in a bottle, or on a computer screen. I know what it feels like to wake up the next morning hating yourself and vowing to never use again, and then call your dealer the very same day.

So to wrap it up, this is a "forever" movement for me. Every day on this planet is a gift that could very well be our last, and I refuse to waste it in front of the computer or injecting poison into my body. It's not worth the temporary high.

Stay strong out there.
 

Skittelz

Member
Beautifully said Skittelz. And I'm so sorry to hear about your friend.
Thanks, man. It sucks.

We weren't extremely close, but because we were both addicts who opened up to each other, I knew him in a way a lot of people didn't.

It makes me think of what you said, about our emotions going from black-and-white to color. In my short life I have lost a lot of friends to the streets and the drug lifestyle, but this one hurts more than the others.
 

Blondie

Respected Member
Yeah, I think anything that brings people together, either good or bad, can create a connection that is hard to understand for outsiders looking in, like the bond soldiers have for a lifetime. Coming here to RN is nice because we all share the same story in a sense, and there is nothing shared here that is that different from anyone else's experience, thus, a strong community.

Embrace the emotions and the suck. This too shall pass.

Best brother.

"All emotions have something to offer us. That is why we have them in the first place. The gifts of comfortable emotions such as joy, love, and passion are easy to receive. However, the gifts of our uncomfortable emotions such as anger, sadness, and fear are equally important. Anger gives us assertiveness, strength, and energy. Sadness gives us healing, growth, and awareness. Fear gives us preservation, wisdom, and protection. When we avoid or push our uncomfortable emotions away, we deny ourselves their gifts."

-Stein, Timothy
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 51

I've been sticking to my stretch routine all of this week so far, I am still waiting for it to become an automatic habit, which it has not yet. I still have to make myself do it, but I am confident that it will come with time. Even if it isn't habitual yet, it is helping greatly with managing the back injuries I've sustained.

Studying, however, is becoming a habit. I get in about 3 hours a day now, and I'm trying to slowly increase the amount of time by a little bit each day. I am getting more confident in the material, but there's just so much information in the books to absorb that sometimes I think I'll never be able to do this. But that is the defeatist in me talking, I need to silence that voice and let the part of me that knows I can win speak instead. I have a habit of cutting my own throat, metaphorically speaking, so I am trying to build myself up so that I can step up to the challenge ahead of me.
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 53

Still doing well, but extremely tired today. I got very little sleep last night so today is going to be a long day.

But it's Friday, and that's always something to be happy about. Looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow and having another good weekend.
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 55

Man, it's been a really busy weekend, full of the life I'm living i instead of watching porn. I love it.

I studied all fucking day on Saturday, and really pushed my brain to new limits as far as focus and endurance go. We had a wicked storm that flooded the basement too, that sucked, but we got it dried out and taken care of.

Today we put mulch down around the garden beds, something we have been wanting to do for quite some time now (years actually) and tended to our fruit trees as well. We have the beginnings of a legitimate orchard in the works. Peaches, Jonathan and Pink Lady apples, as well as red and green pears. They are just starting to produce fruit, and this year looks like it will be our first decent harvest. Especially the peach tree, it has literally HUNDREDS of peaches on it. I have no idea what we're going to do with all the fruit. But honestly, that's a problem I'm pretty excited to have.

Finished the day by going to the zoo with the wife, which was also a good time as well. The weather was beautiful and all the animals were very active -- and the ladies were out in rare form, looking pretty damn good. I have to say it was a good weekend.
 

Blondie

Respected Member
Good to hear Skittelz. It sounds like you have a great thing going with that orchard!

Keep going.
 

Skittelz

Member
Day 58

I just said goodbye to my wife at the surgery center for her disc replacement surgery. So I will be here worried and waiting for the next 3 to 4 hours. We have both been very stressed about this procedure for the last week or so, especially me. She's the one going thru it, and she seems to handling it better. I think the anxiety is worse for me as the second party and I don't really know why. This would be easier if I was the one going under the knife.

I will be taking the next 6 days off of work to care for her, and I don't view that as a hardship in any way. I view myself as fortunate to have a job and financial situation that allows me to be there for her. We don't have any children and it doesn't look like we ever will, so she is 100% my number one priority, my treasure, the one thing I cannot live without. When I think about who I was when I met her and compare it to who I am now, 19 years later, it is clear that she has changed me for the better. She taught me by example what it means to love, to be loved, and I have felt the transformative power of that love in so many ways. So taking time off to care for her is merely a drop in the bucket for what she means to me. It is a labor I am happy to exert and a duty that I cherish.

I am trying to study while I wait, but my own nervousness has me very distracted and I am finding it hard to focus. But I will keep trying, because I can't just sit here and fret.
 
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