‘Don’t judge’: Celebrate recovery in Idaho at the Statehouse on Sept. 8

Recovery from a substance use disorder or mental illness is a life-long journey that begins when a person decides to improve their health and wellness and live a self-directed life so they can reach their full potential. It’s not easy, and it’s not quick.

And it’s definitely worth celebrating.

September is Recovery Awareness Month in Idaho and across the nation. This year’s theme is “Our Families, Our Stories, Our Recovery!”

Idaho will celebrate recovery awareness at 10:30 a.m. Sept. 8 in the Lincoln Auditorium at the Idaho State Capitol. The public is invited.

Lt. Gov. Brad Little will present a proclamation declaring September as Recovery Awareness Month in Idaho. Participants will hear from Idahoans Trinity Bailey, Garri Ann Biggers, and Michelle McMillan, who are in recovery. In addition, seven Regional Advocates for Recovery from across the state will be recognized, and an award will be presented to the very first Idaho Champion of Recovery. 

An art display will highlight the importance of families, communities and people sharing stories of recovery to encourage others to seek treatment and make a connection with the recovery movement. The display will be in the First Floor Rotunda of the Idaho State Capitol on September 8 from 10 am to 2 pm.

Meet Trinity Bailey, who has been in recovery since May 8, 2012.

0902_TrinityBaileyTrinity’s life changed when she was introduced to Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT) after she was arrested for choices that involved drugs and gang activity and began receiving treatment. She did so well in treatment and therapy that her mentor, Lynn Stevens, encouraged her to become a peer and help promote the need for a recovery center. She said she was amazed that people would listen to a “drug addict” as she spoke to them about the importance of a recovery center. She has continued her recovery journey by becoming a certified recovery coach and helping others achieve recovery. She has been married for 21 years and has two children.

What inspires you to stay in recovery?

“Giving others compassion, understanding, and hope. People don’t think they can get better. There are steps, you can do this. It’s easy for people to give up if something goes wrong.” 

What are your biggest challenges with recovery?

“Always thinking, how long can you stay sober? Watching Child Protective Services cases and seeing kids be separated from their family makes it difficult. Seeing those you are close to go through the process is tough, and you need boundaries. Constantly second guessing yourself.”

What is your best suggestion or tip for a peer in recovery who might be struggling or just needing some inspiration?

“Don’t compare yourself to others, compare yourself to the person you were yesterday. Give it to God. Find a support system and get help.  It could save your life.”

What is the one thing you would like for everyone (especially people who don’t have an addiction) to know about recovery?

“Be considerate of others, don’t judge.”

Meet Garri Ann Biggers, who has been in recovery since Dec. 29, 2015.

0902_GarriAnnBiggersWhat inspires you to stay in recovery?

“Recovery center, helping others. I want to be a better person, and I feel healthier.” She enjoys spending time with her sons and grandsons, and has been able to focus more on family since she has been in recovery.

What are your biggest challenges with recovery?

“Trying to understand people better. It’s tough to deal with people in general, dealing with life and everyday struggles. This is another test God puts me through.”

What is your best suggestion or tip for a peer in recovery who might be struggling or just needing some inspiration?

“You’re not alone, there are a lot of us out there who need help. Find a recovery center, they don’t judge and they welcome everyone.”

What is the one thing you would like for everyone (especially people who don’t have an addiction) to know about recovery?

“We’re all human, not perfect. We weren’t born bad. Everyone deserves a second chance.”

Meet Michelle McMillan, who has been in recovery since Sept. 14, 2014.

0902_MichelleMcMillanMichelle had been using on and off since she was 13 and said she used to look at being clean as a way to go back and use later. Michelle went to Recovery for Life to do the trauma track outpatient services and is now a part of Peer Wellness recovery center which “feeds my sobriety every day.” She cites the Mental Health Court and its supports for her success. “Mental Health Court is a huge part of my growth and change. Their guidance and support saved my life for real! I am blessed.”

What inspires you to stay in recovery?

She said she knew she needed to find something to do to say sober. So she volunteered for PEER wellness and found her purpose. “I help others, share experiences, and show it’s possible to be happy again.”

What are your biggest challenges with recovery?

“Getting out of the criminal loyalty mindset was tough. But I did it. I found comfort in being around those who did meth because I had been around it so long.”

What is your best suggestion or tip for a peer in recovery who might be struggling or just needing some inspiration?

“Trust in the process. Change is uncomfortable and not fun, but if you can stick it out it’s worth it on the other side.”

What is the one thing you would like for everyone (especially people who don’t have an addiction) to know about recovery?

“It’s a disease, you can’t just stop. There are things that feed your addiction, and you have to find and deal with them so you don’t go back.”

For more information about recovery or becoming a recovery coach, please visit www.sud.dhw.idaho.gov.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s