Real, Raw, Recovery
By: Amanda Martz
Recovery as a young adult today can be a difficult challenge to overcome. Battling your demons all day, every day, can be a tiring experience. For myself, battling my substance abuse addiction has been a work in progress for years, and years. My addiction is mine own, unlike anyone else's. Just like any other person in recovery, we all have different stories to tell, and this is mine, shortened up of course. I have battled heroin addiction for 8 years now, with many ups and downs, successes and failures, but every day I get stronger and stronger, and battle harder, and harder.
Being in recovery in your mid-twenties can be a tremendous hardship. Normally all your friends want to go out for a drink, at least once in a while, and lets not begin to talk about all the weddings and other lifetime achievements that they are having. There have been many times I had to turn down a "girls night out", or leave a wedding reception earlier because the party was just getting started, and that's my cue for me to go. I have had back up plan, after back up plan, and "just in case" numbers to call, just in case I got the urge while I was out at one of these events. Oh, and don't even get me started with my block list on social media, that sucker is long as the Great Wall of China I swear. But all these situations are true, all of them are battles for people who are in recovery, and those are just the "once in a while" ones, those aren't even everyday life.
I mentioned my block list on social media, and that right there is an everyday battle, at least for me. I have had to block old friends, or acquaintances because of my addiction. Those "friends" or people I knew were apart of my life during those times. They were ex-boyfriends, or even ex-best friends, they are the people who didn't bring me up, or were positive, they were people who were like me, stuck in that downwward spiral. Now, it's not that I don't like these people, hell I loved some of them, I almost married one of them. But they are the people that remind me of my past, and the horrible things I did, and the terrible times I had. Those people remind me of living in my apartment with no furniture because I sold everything I had, and got my car repoed. That is why social media, and having your phone by your side all the time makes it difficult when you are recovery. Because no matter how many time you change your number, or block someone, it seems like they still find a way to catch up with you, no matter what.
Out of all these negative situations or hardships you have to handle during recovery, this is also an amazing time as well. There are so many outlets now to finding help more than ever before. All you have to do is look up AA or NA meeting on your phone and BAM, theres information right in your hands. There is an epidemic going on in the US with this battle on addiction, all you have to do is turn on the TV and you see commercials with information on where to find help. There are so many ways to help find a solution to your addiction. People are also more understanding than ever before now. Complete strangers will come up to you if they see you at a meeting and tell you they are proud of you, and that is just for being there, they don't even know your story. Your story doesn't even matter sometimes, just the fact that you are somewhere, wanting to get help, is enough reason for people to be happy for you.
I am not a perfect person. I'm not married yet, or even have a career at the moment. I haven't achieved all those goals like my friends have. My counselor is younger than me for God's sake! If that doesn't make you feel a little insecure, then I don't know what else would. However, like I said before, I have been battling this issue for years and years, but at this moment I am healthy, I am using my supports, I am putting up boundaries and using resources that I never have before. Recovery while you are a young woman, or a young man, can be hard as hell. But, if you reach out, use your supports, and have at least one person who is there for you no matter what, I know you can overcome it. Because if I can do it, you sure as shit can too.