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 18, 2012

Life goes On

The speaker at last Sunday's 12-step meeting said something to the effect that "life goes on."

In her near 15 years of sobriety she's experienced loss of family, sickness, marriage, and other setbacks. Yet none of this has driven her to pick up another drink.

And her central point – that life goes on – is a truism for all of us in recovery. Some in new recovery have the naive idea that life becomes a bed of roses when they get sober.

But that's not the case. We'll all encounter challenges, as this woman did. But when we’re sober - instead of becoming so devastated we pick up alcohol or drugs – we have the tools to deal with issues.

Newcomers sometimes react to challenges by drinking or drugging because they haven’t figured out how to put the tools in action.

Those who us who succeed use the steps when facing life's challenges. We may be jobless. We may have rough times with our children – or our jobs. We know life brings myriad challenges. We expect some adversity, but don’t let it get us down.

We practice the principles of the program in all our affairs – especially with emotional things. And if we're lucky we get to the other side still sober.