Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 900-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 30th 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.

Friday, December 25, 2020

Merry Christmas

On the 14th of this coming January I'll be celebrating 30 years of sobriety, more than 1/3 of my life in recovery.

But I remember Christmas day 30 years ago what I was doing. I was living in a stolen car parked in an apartment complex. My daily routine was to wake up and find a Circle K where I could steal some booze. Then when I got my courage up I would steal something more valuable that I could trade for heroin or other opioids. Never during those dark days did I think about getting sober and changing my life.

But one day while going through the same routine I just got sick and tired of my life. I had absolutely no money, no friends, and the future looked bleak. I realized that I would either end up going back to prison, back to a mental hospital or dying.

Less than three weeks later I found myself living in a halfway house in downtown Mesa, Arizona. And my life has never been the same. 

After living in a halfway house for a year I decided to start a recovery program of my own. And for the past 30 years I've never stopped trying to help others get into recovery. I have a rewarding life today. I have friends, I have all the material things I could want, and I wake up clearheaded and not wondering what I'm going to do with my day.

Because this day and every day in my future I'm going to do something to help carry the message to others who don't believe they can change their lives.

Click here to email John