Getting clean and sober isn’t easy, even if you have all the support in the world. You can go days, even weeks, without feeling good because your mind is trying to adjust to facing reality for the first time, possibly in years. There is a lot of talk in this world about mindfulness, daily gratitude, and positive vibes, but what happens when we just can’t seem to get to that place in our hearts? This is a direct message telling you it’s okay. It’s okay to feel sad, it’s okay to feel angry, and it’s even okay to not know what you feel.
By the time addicts finally reach the stage they are ready to overcome their addiction, they have lived long and full lives. For most, it’s a whirlwind, but those experiences, remembered or not, are a part of us. What we forget when breaking an addictive pattern such as drugs, alcohol, or any form of self-harm is that we are releasing a part of our identity. While addiction is a disease, it has resided in us for days, months, and years. So, when we choose to stop the behaviors and work hard to release the thoughts and feelings surrounding addiction, it can feel like we are losing a piece of ourselves.
In one sense, that’s wholly true and something we ultimately want. But what most don’t allow themselves to do is grieve that part of their identity. They focus on staying clean and working through underlying traumas, but they forget to be gentle with themselves as they release a part of them that was integral to survival time and time again.
How to Mourn in a Healthy Way
There is a place addicts go, and it’s called the pit. It’s a place where they are the victim, the struggling human, the person that is unlucky and sad. This is the place that reinforces depression, anxious moments, and provokes using. It becomes a comfortable safe-haven away from the world and away from their problems. Essentially, this is where a person goes to be sad.
It’s okay to be sad. It’s okay to hurt. It’s okay to stop by the pit. But the problem starts when a person stays in this pit and makes a home there. For most addicts, they stay there so long, they forget they are even in the pit to begin with. They bring in some creature comforts like a TV and maybe a couch, they decorate it with their favorite things, and they eventually call it home. This can be the hardest part of mourning our old selves. We need to get in that pit, take our stuff, and leave for good.
Does this mean you can never be sad? Absolutely not, but it does mean you have to be cognizant of two things: 1. How long you mourn and 2. The steps to move forward. Mourning our past is an important part of moving forward. Without acknowledging where we came from, it’s hard to distinguish how we got here and what tools we need to take with us in the future. It’s okay to mourn, but literally put a timer on, get it out, and keep fighting for health, happiness, and peace.
Moving forward can be scary because it’s an uncharted path. This is where healthy becomes a blessing and a curse. From here, you get to decide who you want to be and where you want to go, but these choices can provoke fear and anger because starting over means releasing everything you’ve done before and creating it all over again. It also means you may forge your path alone in many places because you’ve learned what works for you and what you need to stay healthy. It means releasing the people we used with and releasing the places we used. But even if it feels that way, you’re never really alone. You may walk by yourself at times, but you have your support groups, you have your health care professionals, and you have the people in your life you can trust. Most importantly, you have you. Creating a new life is a task of faith, one that will bring you to peace and comfort, but all of that starts with believing in yourself.
Creating a new version of you, you 2.0, can feel challenging, especially when it comes to remaining clean and sober, but the future you waiting to be discovered is cheering you on into a new life with a new outlook. Future-you has dreams of getting a steady job and maybe going back to school. Future you wants to enjoy time outdoors or see that movie you’ve put off for some time. Maybe future-you wants to get married and start a family, or maybe future-you wants to travel the world. The possibilities are endless, but first, go introduce yourself to the new you. They’re waiting.
How do we start creating a new life? First, it means getting clean and sober. If you’ve been struggling to detox or need to start the process, call the Summer House Detox Center today to learn about our detox treatment options in Florida. Detoxing with us is safe and easy with all the creature comforts you could need from the sun to the spa. Call now to start the journey to a new you and a new life: (800) 719-1090. You can also visit our addiction treatment center in Miami at 13550 Memorial Highway Miami, FL 33161. We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.