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, February 12, 2013

Break Time

Working with recovering substance abusers can be rewarding.   But, it can also drain a person to listen to the ongoing drama that addicts generate.

The newly recovering often don’t understand that recovery requires work. Many want the counselor to do everything for them. Some from privileged backgrounds have an odd sense of entitlement that makes their recovery difficult.  They’re not half as grateful as the unfortunate who come from the streets or from a stretch in jail.

They mostly question everything. The doctor’s not giving them the right medication. They can’t sleep. They don’t like their roommates. The food sucks. They seem to look for any reason why recovery isn't working for them. Then try to get mommy or daddy to take them back home.

For that reason my wife and I always take a week or more of vacation every 90 days so we can recharge. Next month we’ll be spending time in Mexico. Then in July we’ll be in Imperial Beach, California for a week with the children and grandchildren. In the fall we’ll be back in our favorite spot in Mexico at least once more. 

A necessary respite – and one of the rewards of 22 plus years of sobriety.