I have been on Methadone for a year now for chronic pain from nerve damage. It my pain level down from having at be at a 9 or 10 everyday to about 7 or 8. It isn't a dramatic improvement, but I have tried every other medicinal option I can think of and it has been the only thing that has been able to bring my pain level down that much on a regular basis. Before seeking help from pain specialists I "white knuckled" the pain for a couple of years. But when I got to the point that I was continually hurting myself so I could differ the pain for at least a few minutes, I realized I really needed help. So here I am a year later, on more drugs than I would care for and with a dramatically changed life. (Changed partially because of what the drugs have done to my body and partially because I am still in horrible pain everyday.)
Basically I am sick of havoc that the drugs I am on/have been on have wreaked on my body. Neurontin was by far the main offender, and thankfully I am off of that now; But not before I gain 70lbs and experienced almost every side effect that wretched drug has to offer. Now that I am off the Neurontin and for the most part, I have stopped taking the muscle relaxants that I was prescribed. So right now I feel the biggest thing holding my energy and metabolism back is the Methadone.
I have been taking 120mgs a day for last year, but a couple of weeks ago I cut it down to 40-60mgs a day. I didn't have any withdrawal problems making that jump, but after reading everybody's stories on here, I wonder if that last 40 will be as easy as the first 80. I guess I should also let anyone wanting to reply know that my body reacts strangely to drugs. I have an abnormally high tolerance everything, which is a trait that runs in my mom's side of the family. I also have never experienced withdrawals from "cold turkey" discontinuation of opiates. I know that a lot of people say that methadone is not comparable to any other opiates. I also know I am probably going to get slammed by people telling me only to discontinue under my doctor's supervision. I guess I am just wondering, could it be easy for me to discontinue 60-80mgs over night, but much harder to discontinue it all together?
As I discontinue all my drugs, my biggest fear is that I will go back to being literally crippled by my pain. I mean, with the drugs I am still in pretty bad shape and can't even work a full 40 week. But still... I have sort of a battle going on in my head. Part of me hates how fat and sluggish the drugs have made me. I consider the day a success if I don't find myself dozing off in some embarrassed place like work or on the bus. Pre-Neurontin I weighed 120lbs and extremely athletic. Needles to say, it's going to take a lot of hard work to get that part of myself back. But I am also terrified of becoming the mess I was before I was doing something rational to manage my pain. I would end almost every night curled up in the fetal position crying because I was in so much pain. I couldn't go for more than a few minutes at a time without being distracted by it unless I was in very deep meditation. Just thinking of that personal hell makes me feel like crying. But I am only 23 and I know I cannot live the rest of my life as a drug-zombie. Thinking of the person I have become makes me feel like crying. As I discontinue the Methadone, I can feel my pain level creeping back up, but I have been trying to ignore it. I spend a lot of time meditating and doing self hypnosis and that helps somewhat. So I guess a second question would be, has anybody else had a similar experience, and can you please give me some guidance?
I am sorry my questions are so long and ramble-y. This is definitely more of a discussion rather than dirrect question kind of thing.