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Celebrating connections in recovery

Addiction is a disease of isolation. Recovery is accomplished through relationships and connections. September is designated as a month to celebrate recovery. Take some time this month to celebrate each victory on your journey. This year the theme for National Recovery month is “Celebrating Connections.”

How do connections help people in recovery?

Recovery is defined as returning to a normal state of health, mind or strength. Recovery, when talking about substance use disorders, and abstaining from using substances are two different things.

While recovery does include abstaining from substance use, its real focus is on learning how to live life again. An important part of recovery is building a life that makes it difficult for the person to even be able to use substances. Recovery means working on the underlying issues of one’s substance use. Recovery is rebuilding relationships with the people they love. Recovery is a way of life.

Healthy connections are the accountability a person may need to achieve recovery. Recovery is most successful when someone has healthy connections in all areas of their life. People in recovery may start making connections at a treatment center, whether it’s inpatient or outpatient, and those connections carry on long past their time there.

They will also need connections with community support groups such as AA, NA, Celebrate Recovery, SMART Recovery or other groups. While they may see a counselor for much of their early recovery, they may also need a sponsor, coach or mentor, they need family members, peers, co-workers, and medical professionals, and many others who are supportive of them throughout the rest of their lives.

Let’s take time to celebrate!

If you are in recovery:

  • Share your story – Be a connection to someone else, educate others, and go to support group meetings, share recovery resources on your social media.
  • Write to your politicians to advocate for resources for recovery.
  • Plan an event to help others celebrate recovery in your community, such as a virtual run/walk.
  • Send people who have been or still are a healthy connection for you a simple “thank you” card or message. A small word of encouragement can go a long way!

If you are not in recovery yourself, but find yourself connected to it, you can still celebrate with those who are in recovery:

  • Write to your politicians to advocate for resources for recovery.
  • Volunteer in organizations that help those in recovery.
  • Lend a helping hand to someone who is in recovery.
  • Send someone in recovery a note of encouragement. You can tell them how proud you are of them or offer to keep their children for a couple of hours or invite them to have a cup of coffee with you while you listen to their story, etc.
  • Plan an event in your community that celebrates recovery.

Ready to start your journey of recovery? Connect with Centerstone to begin your journey. Call 1-877-HOPE123 (877-467-3123). Making that first phone call will be the victory you can celebrate today.

Mandy Hazel, BS CADC, has been a counselor and case manager at Centerstone’s Fellowship House campus since July 2014. Mandy works with patients in the outpatient, detox, residential and family programs and has also served as a preventionist.

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