Recovery from drug or alcohol addiction sure has its ups and downs, doesn’t it? If you are in recovery, I am certain you know what I mean by that. There is one thing that is guaranteed when you get clean and start a new life free from active addiction: life still happens. Yes, when we get clean, stuff still happens to us. We still have to pay our bills, deal with feelings of sadness, anger, and anxiety, and still have to deal with loss and hurts and everything else that is guaranteed in a lifetime. The hard part about it now is that in recovery we have to deal with all of that clean. Yeah, we can’t go take a hit or shoot up or get a fix when shit hits the fan (Excuse my language).
We are so used to running to the dope man or digging into our stash when things go wrong. In active addiction we don’t really have to deal with feelings or the hurts of life. When we get clean, though, we are faced with the pain of life without the ability to cover it up with dope for the first time in a long while. That is why it is so important to do more than just simply stay clean. In my opinion, recovery is a hell of a lot more than just staying off of dope. Recovery is changing your life, restoring relationships (including God), learning how to deal with feelings, figuring out what triggered us to turn to drugs in the first place and getting help for it. Recovery is learning how to be a productive member of society, living with integrity, finding new hobbies and fun activities, learning how to love ourselves, and so much more. Recovery is staying clean AND working on our lives. In my book, there is an enormous difference between recovery and sobriety.
Let me just get this out of the way. I have experienced both sides in my journey of sobriety that I started back in May of 2013. I have had some tremendous recovery, where I was truly living life one day at a time and doing everything in my power to work on my inner issues and love myself. I have also had some sobriety where all I was doing was simply staying off drugs and nothing else. It was that time when I was JUST staying clean that eventually led to me getting high for a couple of days.
I am so thankful that I only used for a couple of days, because it could have been a lot worse. It was a slow, downward spiral that saw me: 1-stop regularly attending my NA meetings, 2-stop talking to my sponsor and recovery coach as much, and 3-stop doing my step work and communicating with God on a regular basis. All of that slowly added up and pretty soon I wasn’t in touch with my recovery and fell into some intense cravings.
After a couple days of using, I talked to my family and my sponsor and told them what happened. I then went to an NA meeting and surrendered again. I thanked God that he gave me the motivation to stop using after just a short period, because I have seen so many people go back out and die as the result of a relapse. That could have been me, but somehow I found the courage to surrender again. Let me tell you, I am glad that I got back on my recovery. Life has been amazing again! I have gotten back to my old routine where I was taking recovery serious. I am working on myself again, talking to my sponsor every day and meeting with my recovery coach. I am being completely honest at my NA meetings and getting involved in the fellowship. It feels so good to be back and experience freedom again.
I really wanted to write this blog and share this with you all; to let you know that it is possible to fall down and bounce back. There are going to be rough times in recovery, but I promise it is a reality that we can get through them and get back on our recovery. I can promise you two things about recovery: 1-Life is going to happen and there are going to be some very tough times. 2-We can stay clean through ANYTHING. Yes, we will experience tough times in this process, but no, we do NOT have to use drugs over them.
Things have been great, though. I wanted to give all of my readers an update about my recovery. It has now been about 45 days since my lapse and I have really done a good job of bouncing back. Other than that, I just finished up my summer class at Lansing Community College and am now waiting until fall semester starts. I have a 4.0 and I just changed my major to journalism. I am still writing for Mason Today and that is going wonderful. My daughter is doing great; she will be 4 in January. My relationships with my family are good, as well. My girlfriend and I are also doing well. We have had our ups and downs but we have done a great job of staying strong and using our tough times to improve our relationship. I couldn’t ask for a better girl and I am so excited for our future!
Also, please remember: I am always available to talk and guide you to some great resources in the recovery community if you are struggling as an addict or as the loved one of an addict. I am in touch with some terrific recovery organizations that do amazing work. Just please let me know if you need anything, even if that means just needing somebody to talk to. There is hope! Recovery can and does happen! God bless you all.
Did You Like This Blog? Sign Up For More:
Enter your email address in the form below to subscribe to our blog. You will get every new blog sent straight to you right when it is posted. It is totally free.
[jetpack_subscription_form show_subscribers_total=0 title=”Subscribe to Our Blog” subscribe_text=”Enter Your Email to Get Our Blogs Sent to You:” subscribe_button=”Sign up now!”]