Remembering Normal

A health scare last month caused me to quit caffeine cold turkey. I had the typical nine days of headaches and irritability, but then something strange happened. I’ve been feeling really “off” for a couple of weeks. I’ve struggled with mild depression and anxiety for most of my adult life, but this feels different.

Recently, I came across a website where people were telling their caffeine withdrawal stories. I was shocked at how many people were feeling the same way as me even months after quitting. It is what’s known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome or PAWS. This happens when you quit an addictive substance and your dopamine levels remain low for a long time.

The hardest part of going through this is remembering what normal felt like and wondering if I’m ever going to get back there again. PAWS is a leading cause of relapse for recovering addicts. If I feel like this just from caffeine, I can’t imagine what someone coming off of hard drugs must feel like. I now have much more compassion and respect for those in recovery. I know it will get better with time; I have to remind myself every day. I love this verse:

Psalm 42:5 Why are you downcast, oh my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

If you are struggling today, I pray God gives you strength and peace as you put your hope in Him.

Published by

Yolanda Sommers

Single mother of four children living in Washington state. Received the precious Holy Ghost on June 7, 2011 and living the good life ever since!

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