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.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Running to Nowhere

An addict calls to apologize yesterday after he left the halfway house on short notice. We'd talked several times since he came to the program and I thought he was making progress. He felt bad about letting me down.

He's sorry he left and explains what happened. He says a young family member - I think it was a cousin - committed suicide. He couldn't deal with it and just had to get away.

Of course, by the time he calls, there's not much I can say to convince him to return.

The reality for us addicts is that when something emotional happens we sometimes run. But running isn't the solution. Because wherever we go we meet ourselves there. And usually the problem becomes larger.

Not only has grief overcome him. He's also homeless and without a job. At least as far as I know.

Once we become committed to recovery we accept the idea that life is sometimes painful. People leave us. We lose jobs. We can have setbacks. Life happens.

But when we're committed to recovery, we know we must face life. We realize that running solves nothing. Getting drunk or high only makes things worse.

Recovery is about living life on life’s terms. Maybe this man will discover that in time to save himself.

Click here to email John