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Monday, February 4, 2019

Personal Thoughts, Stories & Reflections From People In Early Recovery: Part 13

recovery reflectionMy story. The short version. 

So basically I was born in a small town right outside of Chicago to my mother and father. My parents got divorced when I was 4, my dad was, or maybe still is in active addiction. We moved to Arizona and that is where I was raised. I lived in a small town for awhile then moved to a city. Things were great. I moved to a new school, my mom was in school, and she met a guy. They were together for a while. He had me drink every now and then to “prepare me for parties so guys wouldn’t take advantage of me.” When in all reality he was taking advantage of me. I was 12. That’s when it started and lasted till I was 15. During that time I was living a double life. Playing sports at school, acting like everything was ok at home. At home I was being abused by my moms ex boyfriend and no one knew about it. My freshman year I took a trip to the psychiatric hospital and got diagnosed with some mental illnesses and got on meds. I was still drinking at this time. Fast forward a bit, he left my sophomore year. I was relieved. But it was still weighing me down. Still, I didn’t tell anyone. That next summer I tried to commit suicide and went to the psych hospital again. Junior year came and I went again. Then told my mom what her ex had done to me. Called the cops to get that sorted out. After that I “ran away”. I OD’d and was found on a bathroom floor in a little tiny apartment. Not long after I went again, another attempt. Finally court started to happen, he got arrested. Fast forward. Senior year I started do drugs more often, every day. Fast forward. My freshman year of college. One night, which was Halloween, I drank and used a lot. Went home completely drunk, showed up to a therapy appointment hung over and my therapist said I needed help - so that’s why I did. To this day I am still sober. My sobriety date is 11-1-2017. Recovery is hard and I went through struggles but I am doing pretty good now! Sobriety has brought me a lot. I will have 15 months sober this Friday, 2-1-2019. Amazing. Never thought that would happen and I am actually happy now and love myself. 

Client K

Recovery is a blessing that I once thought was impossible. I wish I could say that it is easy, but it’s just not. It’s hard facing the root causes of where my addiction started. I can say that the further and further I get into recovery the easier it is to look at myself in the mirror. I can honestly say I love myself and that my opinions and needs matter. To me - that’s a huge change. I’m so grateful for everything that I have learned and discovered on this amazing road of recovery that I am traveling. 

Client M

I am not responsible for my disease but I am responsible for my recovery. As a little kid, I never knew how to appropriately express myself. My emotions were out of control. I always felt inadequate to my peers and I always felt like I never fit in with my family. When the teachers at school use to ask us what we wanted to be when we grew up – being a drug addict wasn’t on my vision board. I knew I felt different and I hated the way I felt on the inside, but I never planned for this to happen to me. Yes, drugs worked for a little while, but ONLY for a little while. Once it stopped being fun and “cool” I had no choice other than to continue to live a life centered around getting loaded. I stole from the people I loved. I lied to everyone. I abused people. Just so I could get loaded. I was very lost before I used drugs and when I picked up, I never did find myself. I neglected myself and I never thought that I could possibly live a better life. I was going to die using drugs and I was okay with it.. Then, one day I just didn’t want to live like that anymore. It took a lot of drug overdoses and arrests. Being humiliated time and time again. It took a lot of events to get willing to try to get sober.

Client A

So far early sobriety for me has been a big change from the life I lived before I went to treatment. I used to not have many responsibilities and little structure, manipulating people and doing what I wanted or not doing things. Now, in sobriety, I have many more responsibilities and structure. I can’t get away with the bs I used to manipulate people into letting me do. Also, I am finally really actually healing. Before, I thought I was processing as things went on and was healing, but in reality I was just reacting and not actually working through my hardships and problems. I feel better now than I have in a long time. There are still struggles I deal with daily and being away from home and my loved ones is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. But I know when I finally get to return home I will be stronger and healthier for the better.

Client E

I am not responsible for my disease but I am responsible for my recovery. As a little kid I never knew how to appropriately express myself. My emotions were out of control. I always felt inadequate to my peers and I always felt like I never fit in with my family. When the teachers at school use to ask us what we wanted to be when we grew being a drug addict wasn’t on my vision board. I knew I felt different and I hated the way I felt on the inside, but I never planned for this to happen to me. . Yes drugs worked for a little while and they do, but ONLY for a little while. Once it stopped being fun and “cool” I had no choice other than to continue to live a life centered around getting loaded. I stole from the people I loved. I lied to everyone. I abused people. Just so I could get loaded. I was very lost before I used drugs and when I picked up I never did find myself. I neglected myself and I never thought that I could possibly live a better life. I was going to die using drugs and I was okay with it.. and then one day I just didn’t want to live like that anymore. It took a lot of drug over doses and arrests. Being humiliated time and time again. It took a lot of events to get willing to try to get sober

Client B

I moved from San Diego, CA to Prescott, AZ one month ago and it is very different here, but I have already grown to love it. I have been in recovery in treatment centers since last year and at one point had 5 months clean, but after relapsing 4 months ago I couldn’t seem to get more than a week clean again until I came here. I was beyond hopeless. Tomorrow I will have 30 days clean again and I cannot describe how good it feels to be back on my path of happiness and purpose that I thought I would never be able to attain again. I have found the thorough care and structure that I need to conquer my disease of addiction and I am very grateful to have found myself here. The process of recovery is a very rigorous lifelong journey and it will not be easy, but nothing worthwhile should be and I am willing to do anything to reach an existence of freedom.

Client K

My time in sobriety has taught me many things over the last 11 months. The greatest thing sobriety has taught me is how to love myself. How to do what makes me feel good about myself in the long term has been the most difficult and the most rewarding lesson and journey. Today I feel like a whole and complete person on my own. I don’t need drugs or people or any other addictions to feel complete. I am complete on my own. As my favorite quote from the Big Book sums it up: “The rewards of sobriety are bountiful and as progressive as the disease they counteract.”

Client M

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