The Journey to Recovery
When we begin on the path of early recovery from substance dependence, it is easy to become overwhelmed. It is likely that we entered a Massachusetts treatment center in a state of chaos and disarray. Consequences are what provoked us to seek help. Life is an utter mess.
How Do We Begin?
The overwhelming notion of trying to put our lives back together proves to be difficult for us. Plagued by poor decision-making and subsequent loss, it is nearly impossible to grasp just how and where we should begin in our rebuilding process. Sometimes the process begins in a Massachusetts treatment center, a rehab facility or a 12-Step Program. Wherever our journey begins, the ultimate goal is to restore our life back to some semblance of happiness and order.
As we begin our journey, we can see the big picture. But the big picture is intimidating. And therein lies a threat to early recovery. History tells us that in the face of feeling overwhelmed, our typical response is to self-medicate, and self-destruct. But a life in recovery promises that we do not have to live as we once did. Instead of becoming overwhelmed, we can tackle the big picture by breaking it down.
Start with the Little Things
We have found from our experience that the big picture is often built from many manageable, smaller ones. A common phrase in the world of recovery says, “Keep it simple.” And we have come to understand how important that idea is.
Building a Foundation
A foundation is built by laying one brick at a time, until the strength of each stone, bonded to one another, makes up the collective base. If each brick is laid down with care and precision, the structure that we build upon it will be strong, and firm. If, on the other hand, we throw it all down hurriedly and haphazardly, the house will sink.
Learning to Live Again
Recovery is no different. We have to be simple in our approach to fixing ourselves. Recovery is about learning how to live again – and it starts with the small stuff. Learning to keep a consistent schedule, getting adequate rest, getting proper nutrition, learning to exercise our bodies, writing a resume for a job, going to a meeting, keeping our home clean and in order – and there are countless more. These small tasks are incredibly important to our recovery.
It is absolutely okay to take a measure of healthy pride into our mastery of these small tasks that make up our daily lives. When we add them all together, we begin to see that they make up the balance of our mental health, our self-esteem, and our community.
The sum of our big picture is equal to the many parts of who we are, and how we live. We begin to see that when it comes to the little things in life, there is nothing bigger.