There’s a wall that some of us run up against in recovery that can be ENORMOUSLY frustrating. 

We’ve been suffering— often a lot. Often we’ve been self-sabotaging; sometimes we’ve been self-harmful; sometimes we’ve even been suicidal. 

Then we hit a point— sometimes we call it “rock bottom”— where we decide we’re going to start living a different way, no matter how hard it is. 

We start working our recovery. And it’s hard. 

They say we work recovery one day at a time, but the truth is, it’s often one HOUR at a time, especially at first. 

Recovery, especially early recovery, very often sucks. But we work it, hour by hour, day by day…and, eventually, we start to feel and function better. 

It doesn’t happen all at once. It usually happens in teeny, tiny nudges. Teeny, tiny baby steps. But it happens. 

We start to have good— or better, at least— minutes. Then better hours. Then, finally, we have a good day or two. 

Our behavior gets less self-sabotaging, one percent by one percent. We start to glimpse what it might be like to want to live. 

And then, when we’re just starting to feel better, when we’re just starting to function better…something happens. 

The people who might have known how much we were struggling, the people who might have been supporting us, the people who were sympathetic to us…are suddenly less so. 

It’s as if, since we seem to have gotten past the worst of what we were going through, we must be all “better.” 

The support and sympathy dries up— and we’re left feeling very alone. 

Not only are we left feeling very alone…we’re left feeling alone at one of the hardest points in recovery. 

Yes, the very beginning of recovery can be very hard…but I maintain it’s even harder a few weeks or months in, after we’ve just started to make progress. 

At the beginning we’re often driven by desperation…but desperation will only fuel us for so long. 

We find ourselves at this point, still pretty early in our recovery, where the name of the game is consistency, continuing to chip away at our emotional and behavioral struggles…but without the support that might have been there when we were desperate. 

It can feel so lonely. 

I maintain this is one of the most dangerous points in recovery. 

It’s a point at which we have to decide that we’re serious about recovery for OUR reasons— not just because someone else wanted us to do this. 

It’s a point where we come face to face with the fact that recovery is often NOT dramatic or evocative— it’s often boring and repetitive. 

It’s a point where we have to accept that, even though being in recovery might be better than letting our trauma or addiction run roughshod over us, we’re STILL going to have days that hurt…and we might have to face at least some of those days without the support we need. 

I wish everybody around us would understand how essential it is to check in on us, to be supportive and expressive and compassionate, when we’re OUT of crisis…not just when we’re falling apart. 

It’s awful to think that we have to keep being the “squeaky wheel” in order to keep getting the support we need. 

It’s awful to think that we have to be in crisis to get the sympathy and compassion that part of us so desperately craves. 

This point in recovery can feel VERY lonely…but it is CRUCIAL. 

It’s crucial for us to stay on track. 

It’s crucial for us to not give up or relapse. 

It’s crucial for us to remember who we are, what we’re all about, and why we’re doing this. 

I know. I wish this whole thing was easier. I wish the people around us could read our minds and know that the point in recovery where we start feeling and functioning a little bit better can be one of the precarious points of all. 

For what it’s worth: I get it. 

Stay on track. 

As the saying goes, we didn’t come this far just to come this far. 

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