Tomorrow, we give thanks for all that is good in our lives and ask our higher power for guidance. Gratitude is paramount to long-term recovery, and we must take stock of the people who have helped us up to this point. None of us in recovery made it where we are today on our on, we all had help. If you completed an addiction treatment program, then several people at the center helped you achieve the goal of living life on life’s terms. Those of you who continue your efforts daily by way of going to meetings, working with a sponsor, and extending your hand to newcomers—know that without your family in recovery you would have already used alcohol or drugs.
While Thanksgiving is an opportunity to give thanks to those who’ve assisted your efforts, it’s also a time that requires vigilance. The snares and traps of addiction seem to rise from the depths of our minds more profoundly during important holidays. After all, certain days of the year center around sentiment and emotion, two things that can disrupt one’s program. People in recovery can go through the whole year without thinking about using, only to find an overwhelming desire to use bubbling up during the holidays.
We could compile a list of reasons why people if they are going to relapse, often do so during big holidays; although, it’s more salient to discuss how to get to the other side of the holidays without picking up drugs or alcohol. It’s worth noting, if you’ve gone through treatment and work a program, then you already have tools at your disposal that can assist you. What’s more, there are several people in your life today, undoubtedly, who are committed to supporting your efforts for recovery.
Recovery Support Network
Are you traveling somewhere for Thanksgiving? Those who answer “yes” to that question have hopefully drafted a plan-of-action for keeping your recovery intact this Thursday. You’ve made a list of meetings to attend and schedule a time each day that you are away for talking with your sponsor. Having a schedule in place is a commitment, in effect, which holds you accountable to something other than yourself. Sticking to the plan will give you a sense of accomplishment and strengthen your effort to abstain, while away from home.
Those of you staying local this Thursday should also have a plan established for continued recovery. Even though you have plans to spend time with family, you’d be wise allowing some time for going to a meeting, or several meetings if you are in early recovery. Making a point to be present at your home group at some time over the course of Thanksgiving will help protect your program from jeopardy. In recovery, going to meetings is vital; just because it’s a holiday, doesn’t mean our addiction took a vacation. The disease is just around the corner waiting patiently for your return.
Treating tomorrow like you would any other day of the year is beneficial, as well as staying close to your support network. Even if you’ve been in the program only a short time, there is probably select individuals who you have made a bond. People, like yourself, committed never to feel the way they felt in active addiction, again. Ask them what they are doing tomorrow; you may find that they need your support more than you theirs. In recovery, we have a responsibility to each other. Again, we all help each other stay on the miraculous path of recovery.
Safe and Sober Thanksgiving
At HVRC, we would like to wish each of you in recovery a happy Thanksgiving; for those of you who completed our treatment program, we’d like to share how grateful we are to be a part of your recovery. Holidays too shall pass. Please remember what you’ve learned along the way and stay close to your circle of support; if you do that, there is no reason why Thanksgiving can’t be a beautiful day.