Recovery Warriors Stick Around
I remember my dad talking about fair-weather friends; those who are with us when everything is going smoothly; we’ve got drugs, or they can get something from us. But the minute it gets complicated, or we’re out of dope, they are gone. And I’ve been betrayed, abandoned, and ditched just like the rest of you.
Often it feels that same way in early recovery. It’s initially a time of loneliness and uncertainty when we decide to live a life of recovery. We wonder if we’ll ever experience a connection to other people. Even when we accept that our friends from our use might not have been the support we assumed they were, at least there were people in our lives.
Choosing Friends, Not Just People
One of the most comforting realizations in my early recovery was that everyone experiences that feeling of loss when they leave behind the familiar – whether it’s drugs and alcohol, or friends. When we realize that these new people sitting in meetings are looking for and need supportive people in their lives, too, we can quit feeling sorry for ourselves and reach out. What can you do to create a supportive network of friends in recovery?
- Go for coffee before or after a meeting
- Come early to a meeting and just start up a conversation with someone
- Share in the meeting that you’re looking for guidance about an issue
- Give someone a ride to or from the meeting
- Get phone numbers
A simple gesture, a nod of recognition when they share, or an invitation to have coffee helped me reach out and find people who were not just fair-weather friends but supported my efforts and I could support theirs. These friends were willing to stick by me through the good times and the bad. I learned to call them recovery warriors, because they, like me, were fighting a formidable foe – addiction.
Recovery Warriors are Everywhere; Find Them
When I changed my focus to who I could help, instead of focusing on the loss, I felt a sense of peace and gratitude for not giving into to the lonely feelings and returning to the world of fair-weather friends through a relapse.
While those words may seem cliché and worn, they aptly describe those who lift you up. Value them and in turn, be the same kind of person for them. Find the recovery warriors in your meetings and fight addiction together.
Writing, and recovery heal the heart