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Saturday, September 15, 2018

September Is Your Time to Learn More About Recovery

Addiction is an illness, but not everyone who becomes dependent on a substance does so for the same reasons. People who develop substance misuse bring different physical, emotional and mental burdens and responsibilities with them. Successfully treating each person means adapting to the unique needs these differing factors generate.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has designated September as National Recovery Month. If you are considering seeking treatment for yourself or a loved one, September is an excellent time of year to learn more about recovery, specifically by educating yourself about the many forms of therapy that are available for people who are looking to reclaim their lives and turn over a new leaf.

Getting Involved in National Recovery Month

One of the easiest ways to participate in National Recovery Month is to attend one of the thousands of events – both online and in-person – that are taking place around the U.S. all month long. These events are not only informative, but they also help spread the word that successful recovery is within reach for anyone.

No matter what mental or emotional trauma you are battling, you aren’t alone in your struggle. The goal of National Recovery Month is to celebrate the success stories of people who have been in your shoes and have emerged stronger on the other side. The decision to seek help for addiction can be difficult, but getting involved in National Recovery Month will inspire you and show you that you can do it.

Recovery for Women

Women who are considering treatment shouldn’t overlook the benefits of gender-specific care. Many women thrive in a gender-specific treatment center, and find it to be the deciding factor in helping them achieve lifelong sobriety. All-female rehabilitation creates a safe and supportive space where women feel free to discuss sensitive or deeply personal topics such as sexual assault, eating disorders, body image and self-esteem issues.

If National Recovery Month has inspired you to explore treatment for yourself or someone you care about, we invite you to contact us anytime to learn about our compassionate addiction treatment center in Prescott, AZ.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Life on Life's Terms

life on life's terms“Life on life’s terms.” It’s an axiom one frequently hears in 12 step-based support meetings. This simple slogan infuriated me the first time I read it hanging on the wall of a church basement, cheaply framed and written in nearly illegible swirly script. The crooked saying stood out to me, among the many others reading “Let Go and Let God,” “First Things First,” “Keep it Simple,” and other obnoxious catchphrases. I felt completely duped and wanted my money back. If I had entered these rooms only to be handed some vague spiritual nonsense one would expect to receive from an egomaniacal guru charging desperate people thousands of dollars for ridiculous mantras, I’d have moved to India…or San Diego.

I walked in to these meetings because drugs and alcohol had stopped working for me. I needed someone or something to fix me, so I could move on with Life…on MY terms. I was not at all satisfied with the intolerable conditions Life had laid out for me. I remained convinced that I was an exception to these unjust tenets. That was a lifetime ago, and a few things have changed since then.

I am often reminded of an afternoon decades ago on a skeletal playground that was most likely crawling with tetanus. But I never noticed the rust. I only ever went there to escape on the swings. I was seven. Maybe eight. I can precisely picture myself pumping back and forth on that rickety swing set determined to touch the sky. I had to let go at exactly the right moment to experience complete freedom from gravity. When I got as high as I could possibly get, I let go. I had done this countless times, a thrilling moment of flight before I landed squarely on the soles of my feet. Until that afternoon when gravity got the best of me. On this particular day, I swung with a determined fire igniting each cell in my tiny body. As I let go of the chains, my feet propelled forward with the breathless momentum my insatiable drive had generated. And then gravity violently yanked me down, my back slamming against the ground.

The astonishment of the wind being sucked from my lungs and the soundless gasping into a vacuum paralyzed me. No air could enter. The space between the complete snatching away of all breath before it gradually returns is the shock of absolute powerlessness. The unexpected vacancy that one cannot fill no matter how desperately they fight for air. The bewilderment and terror of an empty breathless interior, not knowing when it will be filled once again. I could not defy gravity.

Since that day on the playground, I have become well acquainted with this interim period of empty breathlessness and the subsequent waiting that follows before the lungs can take in Life. And it is an altered Life. For it is a Life that now knows its own fragility and opposing resilience. It is a Life that will never be as it was before. Because now it is complemented with a silent mourning period as each one of us has sat astounded at the suddenness of the gaping hole left behind after a fall. A starving vacuum waiting to be filled.

That’s what it felt like the day I got sober. I trembled in enraged muted protest as I squarely met “Life on Life’s terms” for the first time in my floundering existence. My breath once again violently torn from my body. Powerlessness, addiction, suffering. These are just a few of Life’s terms that I vehemently detested in those early and precarious days.

I am a recovering alcoholic, junkie, pill addicted, obsessive compulsive, self-damaging, divorced, cancer surviving, religiously damned, battered, broken and healed, miscarriage of a “normal” adult. Furthermore, the course of my Life has typically been directed by extreme perfectionism, an intense need for approval, and a tenacious fear of abandonment. I have a chemically “differently abled” mind and spiritually starving interior. Without help, my moral compass will remain faulty, leading me to blindly guess, often incorrectly, what direction to take. I am terminally self-centered, emotionally erratic, fitfully phobic, and pathologically self-doubting.

Nevertheless, in spite of this vast collection of character defects and mutations there is a narrow window of hope and possibility that I glimpse through each day. And it is through this tiny opening that I methodically adjust my acuity, manipulate my inherent nature, and walk into the light of wellness, joy, and peace. It has only been within these small margins of chance and grace that I have survived and flourished in recovery. That is my condition. I was conceived and born within the container of a gloriously complex, erratic, devastating, and beautiful mess of genes and experiences as each one of us are.

About a month before I got sober, I was driving to the liquor store weeping without restraint. Praying that something would stop me. Praying for death. Praying for the first time since childhood with “the desperation of a dying man.” I was brought to “pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization” as I walked through the door to the liquor store puffy and red eyed. I knew on a cellular level that alcohol could no longer treat the internal sense of perpetual aching. It could never again make my existence tolerable. In fact, it had made my existence more intolerable than it had ever been. I knew that alcohol would never work for me again. It could not free me from what I then perceived to be the harshest of life’s terms. Yet I still bought the cheapest handle of vodka I could find and drank it on the way back to my parents’ basement. That is where living Life on MY terms had brought me. And this is what I have since learned about living “Life on Life’s terms.”

“Life is not fair!” This is a particularly unpopular yet inflexible term of Life. As a professional that treats addiction and mental illness, a person in recovery, AND a mother of two young children, I hear that a lot. If Life were fair, I would be dead, institutionalized, or in prison. When shaking my fists at the sky in complete outrage and disbelief, I can quickly forget an important clause attached to this unyielding term of misconstrued injustice: Life also offers second (and third, and forth, and often countless) chances, forgiveness, and healing. It is only through grace, the unmerited and undeserved favor, that I continue to breath in and out. I am infinitely grateful that Life does not offer fairness but instead delivers grace. I continue to imperfectly practice radical acceptance of those ancient axioms that hang on countless walls around the world, in places of healing, and in the homes of those that have “come to believe.” It is through living “Life on Life’s terms” that I have remained in continuous recovery since August 31, 2007.

Throughout my spiraling course of healing and re-healing, I have made many mistakes, but have somehow remained honest, open-minded, and willing to the best of my ability. I have learned that recovery is an erratic process of following (or attempting to follow) suggestions, not dogmatic guidelines. It is a simple suggested pathway to a spiritual way of life and to developing a relationship with a power greater than ourselves. What that power is and the exact nature of that spiritual way of Life is left to our own understanding. I am still figuring much of this out, and the continual process of discovery awakens me to the marvel of greater mysteries.

This is what “Life on Life’s terms” has come to mean to me today: pain, challenges, perceived injustices are opportunities for growth and desperately needed change. The sadness, suffering, and heartache richly color my Life adding a quiet beauty, an unassuming intricacy that robs me of breath. Today I have stopped asking the relentless question: “WHY?” It is the wrong question to be asking, and there is no satisfactory answer. I simply don’t get to know “Why.” The solution is to radically accept the unanswerable ambiguities of Life and the vast unknowns that wait on the other side of this eternal query.

There are a few more fundamental terms of Life I have discovered over the course of my relatively short time here: Today I get to be exactly myself, regardless of the judgments or conditions that others place on my worth. Today I can sit with the unknown, wildly uncomfortable with this at times but eventually coming back to the peace that surrendering to Life’s terms can bring. I can love, and hurt, and need, and fear, and rage, and scream, and laugh, and play, and risk, and lose, and fall, and rise without the old restrictions and inheritance of shame that came with living Life on MY terms. That is freedom.

Today I try not to stifle the suffering, for it holds the power to create, transform, and heal. I allow the pain, uncertainty, aching, fear, and discomfort to pass through me with faith, strength, humility, (and at times reluctant) surrender. And with this comes the knowledge that, no matter what, I am going to be ok. Today my hunger is no longer for diversion but instead for authenticity and thriving.

There is connection, peace, and joy lying dormant within each of us awaiting discovery and expression when we surrender to Life’s terms. And because of this, even though we are, all of us, broken in our own ways, with recovery and with each other our interior light can shine through the cracks. Recovery has brought me into the stream of Life “on Life’s terms.” MY terms had me swimming upstream, and I was drowning.

Life becomes permanently altered as a result of addictions, afflictions, the perpetual process of breaking and healing, the many stumblings, and other “mishaps” that naturally fall across our paths. And yet, it is on the other side of suffering, pain, and fear where I have found Life’s greatest gifts. I have learned that healing, peace, joy, and safety are possible. I have lived it. And I see it within the human beings I encounter every day. I am surrounded by individuals who serve as reminders through their selfless acts of kindness and their resilience in the face of suffering that there is always hope. 

Undeniably, I have become fluent in the language of loss as we all do over time; however, those who continue to patiently walk the path with us speak a different language. It is the wordless yet powerful language of love. That is the fellowship that recovery brings. Living “Life on Life’s terms” has led to the discovery of things that bring passion, truth, love, heartache, joy, and beauty that summon tears. I have sought artificial versions of this because I have not wanted to suffer. But Life is suffering, and it is within the suffering that the human and divine meet inside each of us. It is where both the absence of breath and breath itself collide. It is within this sacred space where, if we surrender to gravity and the flow of the stream, we will ultimately experience the remarkable contrast between the vacancy and fullness that comes with each breath…as well as the unknown space in between.

Marie Tueller, MED, LPC

What Is Adventure Therapy?

outdoor therapy

As you might guess from the name, adventure therapy is a form of experiential psychotherapy that encourages participants to explore new horizons through activities such as hiking, camping, rock climbing and more. Adventure therapy allows participants to take calculated risks and make new discoveries in a safe, supportive environment under the guidance and support of mental health professionals. 


Though the phrase “adventure therapy” may lead you to think it’s all about having fun, adventure therapy uses new experiences to help people in recovery deal with the underlying challenges and emotional issues that led to their addictions and other behavioral problems. It also helps participants develop important new skills that can benefit them throughout their lives, such as teamwork, cooperation and communication.

Healthy Recovery in an Outdoor Setting 


Merely being surrounded by nature has many therapeutic benefits, including stress relief, renewed mental focus and improved clarity. At Canyon Crossing Recovery, the breathtaking natural beauty of the rugged Arizona landscape provides an ideal setting for our women’s-only adventure therapy experiences. 
 Unlike traditional talk therapy, adventure therapy doesn’t require you to spend time sitting and discussing your feelings with a therapist. Programs that allow participants to get active in nature provide individuals with ample opportunity to reconnect to their inner voice, which opens new pathways to healing that talk therapy might not provide. 
 Since adventure therapy usually takes place in a group format, it also provides opportunities to create shared experiences with other participants, developing better social skills and improving self-awareness. Team activities allow participants to learn from one another.

Benefits of Adventure Therapy 


Adventure therapy has many excellent benefits for participants, including:

 • Greater trust and self-confidence
 • Sense of personal empowerment and accomplishment
 • Improved teamwork, leadership skills and self-esteem
 • Better problem-solving skills
 • Learning valuable lessons via self-reflection • Cooperating with others to achieve a shared goal
 • Healthier habits
 • More optimistic, positive outlook on life
 • Heightened awareness of personal strengths and weaknesses

Find Healing at Canyon Crossing 


At Canyon Crossing, we have structured our women-only adventure therapy programs to help clients recover from substance dependency and co-occurring disorders. Many participants realize a more fulfilling and healthy recovery journey through adventure therapy in Arizona. To learn more, call 800.651.7254 or reach out to our professional team online. 
 


Friday, August 31, 2018

Overdose Awareness Day : Reflections & Tributes From The Women of Canyon Crossing

overdose awareness reflections
He was a fighter
But not the kind who throws punches
More the type to motivate with his will to fight
He was that boy who dreamed of being on stage
Not for the fame but to inspire the next generation
He was the boy who tried and tried to teach me
Bass all the way across the sea on a tiny screen
He was that boy your parents are cautious about
But the truth is under the black hair, tattoos, and piercings
Was a man who showed and gave respect.
Who was he? He was and is my first love who I lost
Lost to this painful disease - he gave up hope too early.

Client A

She was a pre-mature baby who almost died at birth
She has a sister who was born a year and a half later
She loved to dress herself for school even though her clothes never matched
She could eat her mother’s homemade macaroni and cheese for every meal of the day
She loved going to the beach to build sand castles and cover her daddy from the neck down in sand She loved to take trips to Florida so that she could sit on Grandma’s lap - while Grandpa was in the kitchen cooking bacon
She loved summer break from school, because it meant more time to spend outside playing with neighborhood friends
She became a cheerleader in Jr. High
She got her first boyfriend, he was a wrestler
She experienced her first heartbreak and saw how it made her stronger
She had a beautiful childhood.
She grew up to be an alcoholic.
She is me.

Client C

He was a son.
He was a brother and his brother was his best friend.
He grew up playing every sport, but basketball was his favorite.
His act of teenage rebellion was to get a hot pink Fight Club tattoo on his shoulder.
He played Polo (on horses) in Santa Barbara
His favorite place was his family’s cabin in the mountains of Colorado.
He was a true cowboy at heart.
He loved to fly fish and hunt.
He loved Star Wars and cartoons.
He believed that God was a Broncos fan because the sunset is always orange and blue.
He fell in love under the stars in a middle school courtyard in Arizona.
He knew she was the one when we saw her get an extra slice of pizza at a social event.
He was 6’4 and she was only 5”.
He would watch the same shows and listen to the same songs over and over again just to make her happy and smile.
He was amazing with kids and wanted to be a pediatric doctor.
He proposed to his fiancée three times so that everyone from his and her family could be part of the special moment.
He was ready to start a family with her and would have made an amazing father.
He was a Heroin addict.
He died this week of an overdose.
He was my fiancée.

Client J

She was a daughter.
She was graceful.
She was beautiful.
She was loved beyond words.
She was stronger than anyone I knew.
She was determined.
She could find beauty in everything.
She brightened my day & everyone else’s she met.
She loved to paint.
She loved to sing.
She loved music.
Her passion was doing hair & the salon was her favorite place to be.
She loved her family.
She held me up when I couldn’t do it on my own.
She was a heroin addict.
She was my best friend. (Rest in Peace, Adri, I love & miss you so much.)

Client K

He was born July 3
He was a precious little boy
He was his mom’s only son
He was someone’s grandson
He had a Mom and a Dad
He was an older brother to his sisters and new baby brother.
He loved to play football and wrestle.
He loved to work out and lift.
His favorite color was yellow.
He smiled and laughed a lot.
He was the sweetest creature on this Earth.
He would give the shirt off his back.
He would walk or drive miles to save you.
He was so loving and kind.
He was the strongest person I knew.
He adored his family and friends.
He loved music and Kanye West
He was always there for me no matter what.
He was a talented handsome man.
He always put everyone else first.
He would make your whole day.
His soul was perfect.
He was taken before his time.
He was the love of my life.
He was an addict

Client K

She was born innocent and pure.
She loved to make her older brother laugh and they overflowed the bathtub with bubbles every time. She protects her brothers from harm.
She fights bullying and stands up for the underdogs.
She has since elementary school.
She learned to play piano and she sings every chance she gets.
She loved her gymnastic class and soccer team.
She makes friends wherever she goes and loves everyone around her.
She loves every animal, but especially dogs.
She fights for equality.
She works hard at whatever she does.
She loves Halloween and scary movies.
She traveled the world with strangers and left her heart in Barcelona.
She is fascinated with marble statues.
She loves music, but she hates country.
She loves her family with all her heart.
She is creative, artistic, and loves to write poems.
She sees the beauty in the world and talks to the moon, sun, and the stars.
She got her EMT certification at 17 years old.
She cried when she saw fireflies the first time when she was 18.
She dreams big dream.
She fights depression every day.
She is a drug addict.
And she is me.

Client M

She taught herself how to play the piano at age 12.
She was the captain of her High School Swim Team.
She is a Certified Nursing Assistant.
She loves helping the elderly.
Some may say she’s one of the most intelligent people they know.
She helped build a church in Haiti when she was 16.
She is an artist.
She sings at the top of her lungs in the shower.
She writes poetry to express what’s in her heart.
She held her grandma’s hand as she took her last breath.
When she was little, she loved building snowmen for her parents to see.
She was a ballerina for 10 years of her life.
When she laughs, my heart dances.
She loves to love.
She is a drug addict.
She is ME.

Client M

He was the one who recognized the injustice of the place I was committed to when I was only 13 years old and held in for 33 months.

When everyone else said I should be left there - he said no, enough is enough.

He picked me up two days before Christmas.

It was the best day of my life.

He has a warm smile and the best sense of humor.

He got me a 76 El Camino for my first car, because it was built like a tank and he knew it would be safe.

No matter what I would get myself into I knew I could call him when I needed help with something.

He would be there, even if that meant driving to Phoenix from Tucson to take me to appointments and to complete tasks that were tedious and boring.

He is kind and intelligent, outgoing and driven.

He cares about health and knows about new breakthroughs in the holistic medical field.

He is an amazing grandfather and dad

He is a meth addict

Client M

she was an older sister
she was her mom’s best friend
she played soccer
she graduated high school with honors
she rescued animals
she wanted to be a doctor
she gazed at stars & would start food fights
she never littered
she was a heroin addict

Client P

She is a Sister
She is a Friend
She is a Hard Worker
She is Smart
She is Loving
She is Loved
She is Funny
She hugged me when I was sad
She kissed my scraps when I fell
She held me when I was scared
She taught me how to read
She sang me songs
She was the first person I saw when I was born
She is a Meth Addict
She is my Mom

She loves to sing
She loves to dance in the rain
She loves to color
She loves to help other people
She loves to play with kids
She loves to listen to music
She loves to hang out with friends
She loves to play soccer
She loves pigs
She loves purple
She is a meth addict
She is me

Client R

He held me in his arms for the first time when he was four years old.
He climbed tall trees and looked for rocks in the ditch.
He watched Mary Poppins on repeat.
He danced and spun around with me to The Eagles.
He hid me in his closet from a raging father.
He played baseball to make his father proud.
He hugged me in the halls of elementary school.
He jumped in puddles when the rain had poured.
He got bullied for being small.
He went to high school and became silent.
He had friends over to have Dragon Ball Z marathons.
He had a girlfriend who smashed his car mirror.
He went to a private Christian college.
He felt alone.
He moved back home and spoke again.
He watched documentaries about strange but interesting things.
He introduced me to new and fascinating movies and music.
He was always there for me.
He took the most beautiful, captivating pictures.
He wrote the most mesmerizing poems.
He is an addict.
He is my brother.

Client S

She pouts when she’s mad then laughs at herself
She gets mad at me, then asks me to be friends again.
She dances in the rain and splash in the puddles
She is graceful and beautiful but doesn’t know it yet
She sings out loud even when she doesn’t know the words
She cries at everything – happy and sad.
She loves every dog she sees.
She calls all dogs baby.
She misses her ex boyfriend every night.
She has played hockey since she was little, but looks like a super model
She is loud and fun and loves to play cards
She is small but mighty
She love musicals and sing them out loud randomly
She loves Halloween and scary movies
She always asks if I’m ok even when she is falling apart
She uses silly voices to make me laugh
She is artistic and creative and quick witted and hilarious
We love our kids with everything we have
She’s always there when I need her
She has an autistic daughter
She saves people’s lives
She grew up in Egypt
She gives people second chances
She prays and listens to Christian rock as loud as she can
She cooks, she travels, she scuba dives
She trains horses
She speaks Arabic and wants to join the military
She loves the stars
She has amazing tattoos that have actual meaning
She’s lost someone close to the disease of addiction
We are spiritual, we miss our families
We have hopes and dreams
We have integrity and pride
These are my best friends…
They are addicts and alcoholics and so I am…
And we deserve to live ……

Client T

Friday, August 24, 2018

Personal Thoughts, Stories & Reflections From People In Early Recovery: Part 9

recovery
Canyon has taught me that pain is not something to be afraid of; it is part of the human experience and often leads to the most growth. Canyon has showed me that out of darkness comes the brightest light. The following poem by Rupi Kaur describes all that Canyon has given me.

Stay strong through your pain
grow flowers from it
bloom beautifully
dangerously
loudly
bloom softly
however you need
just bloom.

Client J

I have learned new things about myself everyday here. Being here makes me strive to be a better person. I really like the fact I am constantly working on myself and bettering myself. Every day I am confronted with a new obstacle and instead of using I push through the problem and come out a stronger woman.

Client K 

Nature

Sunrise to sunset
Listen to the earth
Listen to your heart
Paint the sky with your colors
Let your body be as still as the water,
And as full with life inside
Feel the quietness, breathe with the wind
You are one with the universe

Client M 

The universe took its time on you
Crafted you to offer the world
Something different from everyone else
When you doubt
How you were created
You doubt an energy greater than us both

-Rupi Kaur

While I’ve been here I’ve continued to work on a relationship with a higher power. I have a hard time with it because of my biases and inability to trust something I can’t always see. At this point I have a vague idea of what my higher power is and I think that’s ok- it doesn’t have to be perfect. I just have to trust that it’s there protecting me.

Client S

Monday, August 20, 2018

Personal Thoughts, Stories & Reflections From People In Early Recovery: Part 8

recovery reflections
STUCK IN PAIN 

It’s like I’m stuck
Stuck in a smoke filled room
I know
I know I need to get out
But the longer I stay
The more I inhale
I swear I’m trying to break free
But the more I try to escape
The stronger the smoke pulls me back in
Why does this smoky haze pull me in so strong?
Who knew?
Who knew you could get a sensation from pain
Pain you think over and over about
Pain you use to create a smoky haze in your brain.

Client A 

I have only been at Canyon Crossing for six days. Everything is so new and different for me, which is scary and difficult for me. What I can say is that everyone has been so understanding, nice and attentive towards me. I went to my first yoga class today and it was amazing. I can’t wait to start my second week so I can see what more new things Canyon will have in store for me.

Client M 

Though a host should encamp against me. My heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this I will be confident.

I chose this poem this week because it reminds me of my continuous fight against addiction. No matter the struggle it may bring. I shall never give in. I have learned the tools through Canyon to fight.

Client C 

I just wrote grief letters and it’s teaching me where I am as far as letting things go, go. Through writing these letters has helped me see that the opposite of love is not hate it is indifference. When I read my letter I felt a lot of energy in my calves (your root chakra) which makes sense because I’m finally using my voice. I have a place on this earth and my voice matters.

Client H 

Grateful! 

Gratitude is very important. I have so many things I’m grateful for today. The main thing is that I didn’t have to use or drink to get out of bed this morning and I know that I don’t have to use or drink to go to bed today. I love that feeling every single day. There is so many things I am grateful for and the list could go on and on for days. But, I’ll stop there because it is the most important for me in my recovery today!

Client K

I want to apologize to all the women
I have called pretty
before I've called them intelligent or brave
I am sorry I made it sound as though
something as simple as what you're born with
is the most you have to be proud of when your
spirit has crushed mountains
from now on I will say things like
you are resilient or you are extraordinary
not because I don’t think youre pretty
but because youre so much more than that

-milk and honey by rupi kaur

Client M 

Who likes change? I know I don’t like change at all, but my life has had some big changes. I moved to OP, moved houses and got a buddy. It has been quite nerve raking and my anxiety has been crazy. Change for me is normally negative change so to have positive change in my life is a whole new thing for me. It has defiantly taken time to get used to having positive change. What I have learned to do is just take things as they come and that is how I am dealing with all of these new things in my life.

Client R 

Coming to Canyon is my biggest victory. Before I came here I felt miserable in my depression. I had just come home from a rehab in Wickenburg and did not apply any of the coping skills or tools I had learned there. I was home for two months and even though I had not relapsed in my drug use I was still hanging out with my using friends and around drugs constantly. My brother was my biggest using buddy and I was over at his apartment everyday begging him to just let me have a sip of wine or one hit of a blunt. He kept me sober even though he used around me. I was going to an IOP in my town constantly leaving early to go hang out with friends and make drug runs with them. I was stealing money from my parents to buy cigarettes and food. I was visiting my old school that I had dropped out of to let everyone there know that I had just gotten out of rehab and that I was a drug addict just to have a reputation. I was hanging out with my ex everyday and sleeping with him while hanging out with my other ex who then assaulted me because he was jealous. After that happened I knew I had to go somewhere. I didn’t even feel safe in my own bed anymore. I was sleeping on the couch every night until Io came here. My life was a mess and I was so close to relapsing. Coming here saved my life.

Client S 

Once I was lost
Deep within a makeshift world
Created by pain, delusion, and hate.
Full of dreams that never came true and nightmares that did
Constantly running…
From them, from myself, from everything I knew.
Consistently falling deeper into dark destruction. In a labyrinth of stopped time
In a maze of insecurity…

Once I was found
I dug my way out
A light led my way;
Created by acceptance, friendship, and love.
Full of dreams that were coming true and nightmares that are in the distance past.
Running toward peace, toward God, toward life.
A direct road to happiness,
A direct road to serenity

Client T

Friday, August 3, 2018

Personal Thoughts, Stories & Reflections From People In Early Recovery: Part 7

recovery reflections 7It’s so easy to slip

I’ve dug 5ft deep by 2ft wide
I’m digging my own grave
It started with a puff of a joint
Then that Russian water to my lips
Sober was a thing for a while
Then back to the Russian water I went
That lead to a joint pursed to my lips
Next came the shiny crystals
Which shortly lead to lights camera and action
I have to remember one is too many and thousands never enough
And one slip can close my casket for good

Client A

I am on my third month at Canyon and I am starting to feel such a change in myself. I am coming up on my 90 days free of alcohol and I am starting to see the truly beautiful things life has to offer. I have connected with my higher power in a way I have never in my life. I owe a lot of this to my treatment center for supporting me through the good and the bad times on my journey of sobriety. I am making such good friends, and I cannot be any more grateful to be sober and a part of life, instead of running from it.

Client C

Be open to change
Create your own reality
Remember that a smooth sea never made a skilled sailor
And you are rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment
These sayings are very important to me. I have a tattoo representing these so I remember them in my everyday life. It consist of a sail boat in water to remind me that a smooth sea never made a skilled sailor with lotus flowers surrounding it to represent that I’m rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment, the flag on the sail boat is an open triangle to remember to be open to change and Viking symbols of chevrons that mean create your own reality. These symbols put together remind me what I’ve been thru and that I’ve overcome them and to keep going in life. I will never forget this and I hope you don’t too. Remember that you are amazing and have overcome rough times in your life and you are still beautiful and stronger than ever.

Client K

It has been one of the greatest and most difficult years of my life. I learned everything is temporary. moments. feelings. people. flowers. i learned love is about giving. everything. and letting it hurt. i learned vulnerability is always the right choice because it is easy to remain cold in a world that makes it so very difficult to remain soft. i learned all things come in twos. life and death. pain and joy. salt and sugar. me and you. it is the balance of the universe. it has been the year of hurting so bad but living so good. making friends out of strangers. making strangers out of friends. learning mint chocolate chip ice cream will fix just about everything. and for the things it cant, there will always be my mothers arms. We must learn to focus on warm energy. always. Soak our limbs in it and learn to become better lovers to the world. For if we cant learn to be kind to each other how will we ever learn to be kind to the most desperate parts of ourselves.

Client M 

I saw God today: the sun shooting rays down between the clouds…
I saw God today; In a rainbow we could not find…
I saw God today: in the tears of a friend who was hurting…
I saw God today in the smile of others and the pride in their eyes.
I saw God today; as I looked in the mirror and realized my eyes were clear
For the first time in a long time…
I saw God today; in every raindrop and in every lightening strike…
I saw God today…
Because I was looking

Client T