Stand Together in Recovery
“The test we must set for ourselves is not to march alone but to march in such a way that others will wish to join us.” – Hubert Humphrey, 38th Vice President of the United States, serving under President Lyndon B. Johnson from 1965-1969, lost his Democratic bid for the Presidency to Richard Nixon in 1968 (1911-1978)
Recovery from Addiction: The Journey Ahead
When we first embarked upon our journey of recovery from addiction, we likely felt a mixture of fear, dread, confusion, anxiety, hopelessness and guilt. We may even have felt shame and any number of other emotions. One thing we were pretty sure of, however, was that this was some new kind of experience, one that we weren’t altogether sure we could handle – even though we chose this life of sobriety.
We also probably felt awfully alone. That was the single-most terrifying aspect of this journey that we didn’t know quite what to do about. We had learned during treatment that we don’t recover alone, that others are integral in our recovery, as they are in their own, but that really didn’t sink in at the time, did it? In fact, we may be well along into our recovery journey and still harbor some lingering belief that we’re still in this alone.
Strength of Solidarity
The solution to this fear and unnecessary anxiety is to begin to believe in the strength of solidarity. These are two words that are totally appropriate when discussing recovery, since strength is something we all can use and solidarity means we have something in common with others, a shared goal and similar experiences from which to draw understanding, compassion and learning.
The tough part is trying to convince ourselves that the words have meaning. After all, we’ve all said and thought a great many words in the past that didn’t hold up under scrutiny, not even when uttered to ourselves in the privacy of our homes. In other words, pun intended, we may have said them, but even we didn’t believe them.
Emotions are Strong
There’s no getting past what we feel. Emotions are often strong, quite frightening at times, especially in early recovery when we’re still raw and vulnerable. What we need is stability, routine, the regimen of sameness that we can count on. We also need people in our corner who understand what we’re going through because they’ve been there before themselves. We have all that in the 12-step rooms of addiction recovery. That is, we have it if we take advantage of what’s being offered to us in the rooms. First, we have to show up. We don’t have to do anything other than that, to begin with.
Over time, we will become more accustomed to being in the rooms. It will become more comfortable. We may even strike up a few friendships. We will definitely learn things that will help us as we begin to navigate our new life of sobriety. And isn’t that what we all want? We are indeed embarking on a journey that is quite a bit unknown to us at this point. We’re eager to find any help we can along the way.
As we begin to feel more settled in the rooms, we will likely find that what others have to say rings true in our minds. Some of the accounts others relate may be somewhat similar to what we went through or are going through right now. We may even be inclined to give credence to some of the solutions that they found worked for them, vowing to try some version of them out ourselves.
Fast forward a few months or years and we undoubtedly will look back upon our early days of recovery as but the first step in a growth process, one that we had no inkling would take us where we find ourselves, but one that was remarkable and life-affirming nonetheless.
Live each day With Strength and Confidence
Living each day in such a way that we gain strength and self-confidence will pave the way for us to display these admirable traits to others. Along the way, newcomers to the rooms may begin looking to us to help them find their own way in recovery. It’s not that we’re counselors, but more like true friends and colleagues, each working to help the other in this new life of sobriety. Let addictionwatch.com help today. Contact us about any of our drug and alcohol addiction treatment programs today.
What more can we ask of recovery than to greet each day as an opportunity and to share our wisdom and encouragement with others, knowing that we are traveling the path of so many that have gone before us? Standing together in recovery can indeed be a glorious journey. It will definitely prove that we are not alone.