With the COVID-19 pandemic happening, it means recovery from drug or alcohol addiction involves increased isolation and decreased fellowship & support.
If you’re currently sober and active in recovery, think back to when you first got sober. Maybe you went through a drug rehab center, or maybe some type of sober living home or possibly a halfway house/recovery home of some sort. On that first day of your sobriety, did you do it alone? On that first day did you choose, all by yourself, to not drink or use and instead take positive contrary action? Maybe so, but more than likely there was someone or some people supporting you, guiding you, or maybe just there for you somehow, some way.
This period of time we’re living in is absolutely historic; it will be written about in all new history books until the end of time. Who knows, there may even be a movie or a Broadway production about it. However, this type of isolation for an alcohol or drug addict can be deadly? Whether they’re 30 years sober or still in active addiction and about to enter recovery, relapse is much more prevalent while isolated from others in recovery.
For us here at New Lyfe Solutions, the past year or so has been very out of the ordinary, as I’m sure it has for everybody.
Recovery residences like sober living homes or halfway houses are unique and convenient, in that, they generally enable people to quickly move into a safe and clean environment, without any need for a lease nor a large initial payment. In lieu of the COVID-9 pandemic, the ability to let in new clients with just a day or two sober notice has been greatly limited, thus forcing us to turn away a number of people who would have otherwise been a good fit for our recovery residences.
Our number one priority in operating this network of sober livings is to protect the clients currently living with us. No matter what a situation might be, whether an internal or external event, protecting the sobriety and safety of our clients, and the overall integrity of our recovery residences will always remain a priority, which means turning away potential new clients due to health concerns.
The silver lining with this pandemic is that it presented an opportunity to experience major change in early sobriety. A common theme among sponsors in AA, NA, etc. is to suggest to a sponsee, or even a friend who may happen to be new in sobriety, that they make no major decisions or changes in the first year of recovery. This of course was a case beyond control, but just the same it was an opportunity to experience an array of uncomfortable emotions, deal with them in a small group recovery residence or halfway house setting, and continue remaining sober throughout the process. This type of real-life experience while living in a somewhat protected home environment is a key benefit of structured, or even semi-structured sober living housing.
Now with the vaccines in full flow and the world starting to open back up, let’s always remember the importance of getting back to basics:
- Attending 12-Step meetings (AA, NA, CA, etc.) through video chat is great when that’s all there is, but as in-person meetings start to open back up it is important to resume face to face recovery & fellowship
- Get out and about! As everything begins to open back up, call up your sober pals and remember to have fun.
- Opportunities to be of service are soon to be back in full swing. Dive in and help others in their recovery
- If you are among the many who have endured tight finances during Covid-19, you may be inclined to try to work as much as possible in order to catch up and/or payoff some debts you incurred during Covid-19. That said, never forget that no matter how bad finances may be, sobriety is always number one. Remember, when sobriety becomes a number two priority it often ends with losing everything.
Lets all be super grateful that the pandemic is winding down, and super hopeful that it stays down.