What does recovery mean?  How does one find recovery? 

Recovery does not come to the individual.  The individual must go to recovery.  There is no “magic recovery pill.”   There needs to be a desire to seek and work towards recovery.  Even though it does not seem possible at the time of despair, it is possible. For me, the first three months were very difficult.  That irritable and discontent feeling, like a deep hole in your sole.  The secret to recovery is “change.”  Changing your way of thinking along with your lifestyle. People, places and things associated with the addiction needs to change.  Community self-help groups and friends you can identify with need to be formed in order to help strengthen and build one’s newly found identity.

Identity?  What is identity?  Who am I without drugs or alcohol? 

My true identity is what I discovered through recovery.  Like having a second life, a second chance at self-actualization and meaningful relationships. Once I climbed out of the diseased black hole and reached the outside life became amazing!  Those in recovery get to find out who they really are.  It is a process of self-awareness that rips and chisels away at the thick diseased armor which has numbed and cocooned us from living life as our true selves.

What does it take?  What kind of person can live through  addiction and actually recover? 

Those in recovery from addiction have battled hard and overcome challenges that most could never even imagine.  Extreme pain, poverty, homelessness, incarceration, selling their soles, to living a productive life.  Recovery takes hope, courage and strength. Hope that it is possible, the courage to ask for help and the strength and willingness to carry it out.  It doesn’t come easy.  Support and understanding from loved ones and society as a whole can help others get there.

About Carole Eastman

Carole is an addiction counselor whose passion is to provide support to others suffering from the disease of addiction and mental health disorders. In recovery from alcoholism for over 6 years, Carole understands the barriers and challenges many face in order to achieve a better quality of life which we are all so deserving of. Carole has raised three children as a single mother and after many years of struggling now enjoys living life on life’s terms. You can connect with her on LinkedIn, and follow her story on HMC’s Supportive Minds Blog.

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