How have you experienced the effects of alcoholism or addiction transforming into the effects of recovery?

Colleen suggested this topic, writing “we often hear about the effects of this disease, but I've never heard the phrase, the effects of recovery. It has really made me reflect, as I have found over the past couple of months, my recovery has really changed the way I feel internally. I've heard that this disease has physical, spiritual, emotional, and mental. I have been reflecting that the effects of recovery are also physical, spiritual, emotional, and mental.”

She joined Spencer for a conversation about the effects of recovery. We looked at some of the effects that our loved ones' alcoholism had on us, and what effects of recovery we now have in their place. Colleen spoke of going from obsession to clearer thinking, from anxiety to feeling calm, from anger to acceptance, and from denial to awareness, acceptance and then action.

Colleen had recently moved house, and we explored packing and moving as a metaphor for some of the Steps. During the process of moving, you take inventory of what you have, probably finding things you had forgotten you even owned. Then you decide, probably with the help of others, what to keep and what to get rid of. Which is exactly Steps 4 through 6, isn't it?

As she dug into, literally, some stuff from her childhood, she realized that there was trauma there that she hadn't dealt with. Around that time, she found herself listening to episode 203, Adult Children of Alcoholics, and realized that she could find help there. After many years in Al-Anon, she now finds herself a newcomer in ACA, because of the clarity she gained as an effect of her Al-Anon recovery.

Al-Anon gave her compassion and understanding for her mother, and she was able to mend that relationship and be with her mother at the end of her life. She has also grown close to her father, and she has clear boundaries on their interactions to protect her own serenity.

She would like to go back and tell her scared and lonely younger self how much Al-Anon would help and how much she would gain.

Readings and Links

We read from Courage to Change, April 6; and How Al-Anon Works, pp 88-89, “Our mental and emotional health” (Chapter 12, Taking Care of Ourselves).

Upcoming topics

An upcoming topic is “it is ok to love an alcoholic”. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.

Music from the Show

James – Sit Down
The Greatest Showman Cast – This Is Me
Bonnie Tyler – Total Eclipse of the Heart

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