The weight of recovery

As many of you know if you have followed this website for a period of time, I am in recovery from addiction and psychosis. I have spoken extensively of my experiences from when these things were in an active state for me, but today I want to zoom in on the experience of recovery.

Recovery.

Aptly named because it is a time when you try to recover your former self, you try to recover a time before all the shit hit the fan. While a hopeful title for such a period of time, it is perhaps the hardest part of the mental health cycle.

When you start to recover, you are left with the pain you may have caused, the guilt, the shame. There are times during recovery when quite honestly it’s quite difficult to love yourself. You are left with the questions that may never be fully answered.

It is a lonely time that can weigh on your mind a great deal.

What if the damage done is irreparable? How can people trust me again? Am I worthy of the love I have received?

While the burden can be shared with others in the recovery community appropriate to you, the burden is ultimately yours. We are the ones who have to decide to make a difference, which in the case of things like addiction and psychosis can be incredibly challenging; how can I decide to get help at a time when I don’t understand how ill I am?

For many of us, all we have is the wreckage of the life we once hoped for. Taking it’s pieces and trying to rebuild.

But hope is not lost. Because we can find ourselves again. While we carry the scars of our former battles, they stand testament to our victory over the immense pain and suffering that befell us. The people that love us are there, we just have to shine a light in the dark, whatever that may look like in our life.

Please don’t lose hope. You can find yourself. You can recover what wad lost.

Although life may be different to how it was before, I promise it can be a beautiful thing. Choose to carry the weight of recovery, and emerge a stronger you.

Published by David Gray-Hammond

David Gray-Hammond is an autistic mental health and addiction advocate living in the South East of England. He is in recovery from addiction and psychosis, as well as other complex mental health conditions. He was diagnosed as autistic seven months after achieving sobriety, and is resolved to share his experiences with the world in the hopes of being the person that he needed when he was younger.

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