A Summer of Firsts


by Pat Brown, LCSW - For those entering their first summer in recovery this time of year brings about challenges that are not necessarily unique, but require attention. Picnics, time spent poolside, summer vacations, weddings, and even yard work are some of the items that fill our calendars for the next couple of months. Navigating these for the first time has been daunting for everyone in recovery.

The adage of “people, places, and things” gets ramped up in the summer months as nice weather avails for more social occasions on our calendar. In early recovery we face these with the pressure of owning our story of recovery appropriately with those we see, understanding potential situations that induce cravings, creating a safety net in our planning, all while balancing our fear of missing out. Understanding our new reality in recovery is a key to our ability to not only make it through, but to thrive in our new life. While this is daunting, there are millions who have paved the way, and the most successful lived this out loud. Sharing their fears, concerns, and excitement with their support system through it all.

If this is your first summer in recovery—what’s the plan? Who are you connected to in terms of professional care and support in your community? Strength through this period of your recovery comes in numbers—numbers of appointments on your calendar with your therapist, number of meetings you plan to make, number of sober supports you have in your phone, and number of times you execute the courage to let all of these things work for you.

Let’s have our best summer yet. We got you.

Be well,

Pat Brown