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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Supporting Recovery This Thanksgiving

People in recovery have a substantial amount to be grateful for today and every day. When you woke up, you got on your knees and prayed for guidance, rather than plotting how you will get drunk or high today. On this day, you asked yourself how you can be of service to your fellows in recovery, as opposed to asking what others can do for you. In recovery, we are no longer driven by self-will or consumed by self-defeating behaviors; instead, we endeavor each day to be a better version of ourselves.

Everything mentioned above is accomplished by remaining steadfast and committed to a set of principles. Through honoring the traditions of those who came before us, we can be an example to the brave men and women who will follow. We achieve our goals by committing ourselves to something higher, acknowledging that we don’t have all the answers and, at times, what we think is the right next move is not in our best interests, after all. Through working a program of recovery, we begin to see our errors in reasoning and learn how to look at life in a new and different way. In time, people in recovery discover their real potential made possible by their daily commitment to improvement.

Recovery doesn’t happen in a vacuum; each of us relies on one another for guidance and clarity regarding the right action. Isolation is no friend to abstinence, left to our own devices we drink and drug. Together, people in recovery work the problem of self and are benefited significantly by collective insight. In any given room of recovery, one finds hundreds of years of examples of how not to handle a situation. This network allows us to learn from the errors of others, lest we make the same choices. With tomorrow being Thanksgiving, and all, it’s important that those new to the Program utilize the tool that is fellowship. Together, we can make it to Friday without using drugs or alcohol.


Grateful Support

In active-addiction, it’s everyone for themselves; in active recovery, it’s all for one and one for all. If you intend on abstaining from drugs and alcohol this Thanksgiving, then we implore you to plan your day around your recovery. Doing the opposite will likely present problems, potentially leading one on a collision course toward relapse. It’s entirely vital your recovery remains priority number one, turkey and cranberry sauce can wait—your program can’t.

Addiction recovery takes precedence over everything else; which is a fact you’re probably aware of already. However, gentle reminders never hurt in putting things into perspective and refocusing your efforts for recovery. You probably have plans for tomorrow, maybe they involve friends and family. If so, be sure not to stretch yourself thin, in every family, there is a member who taxes one’s serenity to the nth degree. Spending time with family is nice during holidays, but we implore you to go to a meeting before (preparation) and after (decompression) family gatherings. Loved ones can trigger a slew of emotions which can affect your spiritual connection. Taking preparatory measures to protect against such an eventuality and taking time to debrief afterward will protect you from veering off course in the program.

Attending meetings tomorrow will give you an opportunity to discuss what helps you manage holiday stress. What you share with others might help someone who is struggling; your words might bring another back to reality. Once again, we are a fellowship, and all of our successes in life are inextricably connected. Your achievements and guidance empower others and vice versa. All of us should take a moment tomorrow and appreciate the gift that is fellowship and be grateful, remember that when it comes to addiction—we are the lucky ones.


Help Is Close

Even with a plan in place, some people might encounter problems. It’s important to have your phone charged and handy at all times. If you find yourself in a sticky situation, call your sponsor; or get to a meeting, you may want to do both. Whatever you need to do to protect your sobriety, do it; even if that means cutting family time short, your loved ones will understand. All of us at Whiteside Manor wish you a safe and sober Thanksgiving.

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