Recovery from the extremely painful wrath of substance abuse & dependency is a concept that evokes inspiration. If an effort to attain actual recovery is carried out, no matter what that entails… it really is just, such a stirring, compelling notion. Generally speaking, in order to experience a prominent sense of closure to one’s active career as a drug-user, it is only natural that one feel inspired to escape the dangerous game of substance abuse. I say this with confidence, as I went through the recovery process myself, and I continue to walk towards a full recovery every single day. I don’t know that I’ll ever reach 100% recovery, but I don’t think anyone actually does when it comes to the disease that is addiction. I think it is beneficial for me to have this mindset anyways. I believe that by making myself always open to learning new concepts and ideas, I will never cease to be amazed by the stimulating levels of enlightenment [within recovery] that I continue to sense every single day. This knowledge most definitely comes from brilliant first-hand experience.
Let’s get back to inspiration, though. I do feel that it is important to be positively inspired in order to successfully exit the ominous drug world. One must decide, on his own, that he actually wants to stop using. Moreover, it has to be for the right reasons, i.e. positive inspiration. All of those reasons must always initially include one’s own sense of self. You absolutely want to become clean, first and foremost, for yourself. At the end of the day, we are all we got. Each person can only rely on him or herself. If you decide to quit for a boyfriend or girlfriend, well, what if he or she breaks up with you? Where’s the motivation to stay sober? The one entity that will never leave our side, as silly as it sounds, is ourselves. Nevertheless, if you decide to get clean for yourself and your kids, should you have any, hey; I most certainly believe that that is positive inspiration.
I want to start an AA-style group that congregates, at the very least, on a monthly basis. I would call this group, obviously geared towards addicts in recovery, Stepping Stones. As many people as I can gather would meet for an hour and essentially engage in a guided but open conversation. I’ve always felt that conversing with fellow, like-minded addicts is so rewarding. No two human beings are the same essentially, and the same can be said for the human brain. I think each person can and often does bring at least one nugget of unique inspiration to the semantic table.
The Stepping Stones home in Katonah, NY. Photo courtesy of AAGrapevine.org, 2018.
Of course, this therapeutic would be themed, as well. The reason for the name Stepping Stones is that that was the name AA-founder Bill Wilson used for his own home, where he started and began holding his Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. There is quite a colorful history surrounding just Bill W.’s life. I just love the fact that this man, who struggled quite profoundly with his addiction, followed through on an inspiration, which ultimately became one of the most groundbreaking and innovative tools available to addicts and alcoholics alike.
I would like for this group to, during each session, recognize and then discuss at least one of the major aspects of AA’s origins. For example, I could actually bring along some printed photos of the Stepping Stones NY home, and the group could learn about where and how the meetings were actually carried out. This would basically be like a very enjoyable history session. By continuously examining the various elements to the chronicle of events that surrounds AA, I believe that, in turn, one will be enabled to relate these tidbits to his own life. Did you have a positive experience in AA? Where are some of your favorite meetings? What are the advantages to a 12-step program in terms of a positive recovery? This would ultimately force each person to specifically apply recovery to his or her very own life, thereby also promoting it.
I actually presented this blurb to some counselors and the leadership board at an MAT (medication-assisted treatment) and recovery center in Portland (ME), and it was approved! I am so excited! I will be chairing a support group, with the theme of AA history. From there, we will engage in open discussion with the hopes of patients drawing inspiration from the incredible events that surround Bill Wilson’s life.
My group will be meeting this Friday, March 23rd, right at the center, in the morning. Wish me luck! I will most certainly be letting you know how it went.