Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

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

Monday, December 14, 2015


"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was ending, he turned into a butterfly." Proverb

As a member of the 12-step programs for almost 25 years I've seen miracles. I've seen men and women reborn, coming back to life from what seemed a hopeless state.

I've met men and women who tried suicide while drunk or high. But they didn't succeed.

So they continued to exist in the slow death of drugging and drinking until something intervened. Maybe they went to jail. Perhaps they had an accident that put them in the hospital. Maybe the boredom of living without a purpose helped them surrender to recovery. We change for all kinds of reasons.

But the change rarely comes from something we add to our lives. It's what we take away that makes the difference. And what we take away are the substances that caused us so many problems. And when the substances go so does the insanity, the drama, and the dishonesty.

When this happens we start hanging out with others who are like us. Others in the program who teach us how to live again. Those who teach us the right thing to do.

Suddenly life begins to blossom for us. We find happiness in the simple things. We find friends. We start enjoying life a life we never dreamed of.

The Promises begin to reveal themselves.

Click here to email John