Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, a 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992 when he had a year sober. He's in his 27th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he sometimes disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Yesterday Darrell, a former client who was with us some 12 years ago, stopped at our corporate office. He still had the same infectious smile and air of gratitude he left with so many years ago. He now lives in Florida and was in town for the holidays visiting in-laws.

There's nothing so validating to our mission as when we see living proof that our program works. Since Darrell got sober he's earned an engineering degree, built a successful business, and has gotten married. And, he's still working to enhance his life, planning to attend graduate school to become a substance abuse counselor.

It is tempting to say that were the ones who got Darrell sober. The reality is, however, that we provided the structure and Darrell took advantage of it. That's what the TLC program is all about. Anyone can do what Darrell has done with the proper motivation. All they need to do is be willing to go to any lengths to change their life. That's what Darrell did and it worked for him very well.

We spent nearly an hour chatting and filling in the gaps. It was a wonderful respite to talk about earlier days in the program. He's living proof that staying sober means a better life.

Before Darrell left he pulled out his checkbook and said that he would like to make a donation to the program. He wrote a check for $1000, an amount that will help some other client along the road to recovery.

Thank you for your visit, Darrell, and Godspeed along the road to happy destiny...