Recovery is Real

September is National Recovery Month.  Anyone familiar with addiction can understand the often chaotic and painful circumstances that precede recovery.  However, the process of recovery offers a chance to begin a life focused on finding meaning and purpose in sobriety.  The journey is best explained through the words of those who are beginning this path. 

Recovery is the process of investigation into the past.  Using people, tools, and self to find out what’s gone wrong (broken) and going through the process  to fix ourselves—to do whatever it takes -P.H. (currently in services at Breaking Free)

To hear the stories of those in recovery is to truly understand that recovery is real. Here are just a small part of those stories:


Before recovery I drank every day to hide my feelings, numb my mental and emotional pain and avoid facing the hard choices of life. 


This went on for years, but the last year was even more extreme.  I was drinking at work and in my car and hiding it from my family—all to avoid facing my pain.  Then I had a blackout behind the wheel and was arrested for a DUI.  I thank God every day I didn’t kill myself or hurt anyone.  This event was my bottom, and because of it I finally realized I had a problem that I couldn’t control without help.  Two days after my DUI I went to AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) which was one of the best things I have done in my life, and now I’m involved in the Men’s Intensive Outpatient Program here at Breaking Free.

For me, recovery is about using the tools shown me by AA and Breaking Free.  It’s about living day by day; sometimes hour by hour; minute by minute.  But it does get better.  Once I was truly honest with myself I was able to change.  Prayer, meditation, honesty and working the steps have helped me feel alive for the first time in a very long while.

Recovery is about loving yourself enough to forgive yourself, living in the moment and learning to participate in life again.  –CJD


The ‘old me’ before recovery would drink to have fun.  I would drink to pass time. 


I would drink to forget my troubles.  I would drink to celebrate.  I would drink to ease my pain.  I would drink to be more social.  I would drink for every occasion.  I was in a world of hurt. 

Now in recovery I feel full of life.  I feel happy and positive about the future.  I’m looking forward to new adventures in life and new friendships.

To me, recovery means loving yourself.  It means new life.  Recovery means leaving the past in the past and looking forward to the new you.  Recovery means making new, positive memories and becoming a positive version of me. -JC


The following quote pretty well summarizes the attitude of our clients here at Breaking Free and all of the other individuals with the courage to get up every day and make the choice to pursue their own recovery journey:

If I were asked to give what I consider the single most useful bit of advice for all humanity, it would be this:  Expect trouble as an inevitable part of life, and when it comes, hold your head high.  Look it squarely in the eye, and say, ‘I will be bigger than you.  You cannot defeat me.
-Ann Landers


Written By:
Cindy Weaver, BSN, CADC
Counselor at Breaking Free

If you or someone you care about is struggling to begin the journey to recovery, please remember there’s help available.

 To explore the possibility of treatment options, contact Breaking Free  at 630.897.1003 ext.216.

Betsy Santana