Recovery Means…


September is National Recovery Month, and it’s nearly over, so I wanted to make a special blog post to celebrate. I decided to write what recovery means to me, and I hope my readers will write in with their own definition of recovery.

Recovery means…

….taking the worst and most embarrassing thing in my life and turning it into my greatest asset.

….becoming less judgmental of other people.

….remaining teachable.

….having more free time, after the burden of looking for the “next one” has been lifted.

…looking in the mirror, and feeling content at what I see.

….being satisfied with the small pleasures in life.

….developing a thicker skin for judgmental people. They aren’t going to ruin my day.

….re-connecting with the human race.

….re-connecting with the God of my understanding.

…reconnecting with myself.

….doing what I need to do for my well-being, even if other people don’t approve.

….being happy when I make progress, no longer expecting perfection.

….talking frequently with other people who share my passion for recovery.

Recovery goes beyond 12-step programs or medication-assisted treatment. Recovery can apply to issues other than drug addiction. It can apply to eating disorders, co-dependency, gambling problems, sex addiction, or any other compulsive activity that is bad for our health. We can be in good recovery in one area of our life and be in active addiction in other areas. We have good and bad days. We relapse, and we try again, and we stop listening to the voice of addiction that tells us we should give up because we will always fail. We learn from our failures and come to look at them as opportunities for growth. We turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones. We lift up our fellow travelers when they weaken and they do the same for us.

We do recover.

4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Anne on September 29, 2014 at 1:05 am

    Recovery is being brought to life from being in hell, having freedom, sanity, peace. Having self-esteem, self-respect, dignity, being selfless. Being humble instead of bring humiliated. Being teachable, being mature. I LOVE recovery. I agree recovery is more then being abstinent from drugs, or whatever your addiction is. Recovery is healing, growing, change. It’s taught me who I am & to love myself.


  2. Posted by Theodore D Fifer MD FACS on September 29, 2014 at 1:26 am

    Amen, Dr. Burson. God Bless


  3. Posted by John Cunningham on September 29, 2014 at 7:24 am

    Happy Recovery Month To You And All That Are Recovering As We All Know How Long A Process It Is. Recovery means to me you have a chance to find out who you are… To help others in recovery and always be willing to learn myself… And in recovery I have come to accept to not put time limits on your recovery as it can leave you open to feel like you are a failure and we all know if you are willing to recover you could never be a failure no matter how hard it is sometimes…. Happy Recovery To All


  4. Posted by William Taylor, MD on September 29, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    With all the compulsive and damaging behaviors out there, I suspect that the need to be in recovery is the norm, and those individuals who truly have their behaviors under control at all times are in a lucky minority.


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