Multiple Pathways To Freedom

Feb 13, 2024

Multiple Pathways To Freedom Thrive Li Ny

Recovery is a process accessible to any one of us if we are willing to surrender. Accepting help along the way and practicing an attitude of gratitude free from complaint.    Always looking to see how we can contribute to the solution rather than live in the problem.  Thinking what I can bring to the situation rather than what can I get out of it.

In January 2014, I realized I was living to drink and drinking to live.  My two sisters asked me to stay away from them and my four brothers wanted nothing to do with me. I even drove drunk and crashed a car with my friend in the back seat.  Wherever I turned trouble was waiting around the corner and the people I surrounded myself with drank the way I drank.

I had isolated myself from the outside world and I felt doomed.  I had time on my hands due to fact that I had lost my music students because of alcohol.  I knew I had to change.  Somewhere along the way I crossed over line between enjoying alcohol like normal people and instead drinking alcoholically.   I drank until I saw monkeys.  It was suggested by my therapist that I go to Alcoholics Anonymous.  I walked into A.A. and realized that I could identify with the speaker.

My first year of recovery went by fast, however, both of my parents and in-laws were hospitalized for life threatening illnesses.  In helping them my own problems started to die of neglect. During this time, I also began to explore other paths of recovery including mountain biking groups, meditation, hiking, women’s weekend retreats, Smart Recovery, reading memoirs, gong baths, yoga, Qigong, and continued my one-on-ones with my therapist. I also began holding recovery open mic nights and hosted an assembly to view Anonymous People.   The encouragement and inspiration from other people in recovery was also helpful.

With so many other tools available in the recovery process, it’s difficult to name every method we use to recover from drugs or alcohol.  Whether it’s Natural recovery, support groups, medication-assisted recovery, Peer Recovery support or Alternative and holistic Recovery.  There is hope.

One of the tragic side effects of addiction is that it renders you incapable of seeing your dreams come true.  I always felt like I had a lot of potential and people would remind me of that. It would bother me because I didn’t know how to tap into it.  Now, I understand that I have illness called alcoholism and it sapped me for years. It sapped me of my ability to see things through and to create anything of much value.

One of my favorite quotes come from Henri J.M. Nouwen:

“Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone’s face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions.  I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come.”

Today I work for a non for profit called THRIVE Recovery Centers for F.C.A. Miraculously I enjoy life, every minute of it.  I love helping others reach their full potential and  seeing their enthusiasm come back.

Susanne S.