What to Expect After Your First Year in Recovery from Alcohol and Drugs
It can be difficult to begin the process of recovery from alcohol and drugs because you are unsure about what to expect. The first year of recovery may not look the same for every recovering alcoholic and addict. Even the second year, third year, and following years may not look the same for each person in recovery. The reality is that recovery is a process, and not every addict and alcoholic will be at the same pace. That’s okay though because recovery is all about growth and as long as you don’t return to alcohol and drugs, you are doing just fine.
First Year of Recovery from Drugs and Alcohol
What can you expect from your first year of recovery from alcohol and drugs though?
Living without Alcohol and Drugs
When in recover from alcohol and drugs, you can expect to finally be living without using substances! Whether you never even thought of it until you were able to begin your recovery or you always dreamed about a life without the need for alcohol and drugs, it finally becomes a reality during your recovery. During your first year of recovery, you get to experience this day in and day out. You really get to live a sober and honest life as long as you continue to work on yourself and focus on your recovery.
Reduced Alcohol & Drug Cravings
Many recovering alcoholics and addicts stop craving drugs and alcohol from as early as a few months in recovery to sometime throughout their first year. While drug cravings can come to a halt for some, it may take a longer time for others to stop craving the drugs and alcohol as much, but this should certainly improve the longer you are off all substances.
During your first year in recovery from alcohol and drugs, you may notice that you are more aware of what is going on around you. During active addiction, you most likely had one focus: using alcohol and drugs. If that wasn’t your focus in active addiction, then it was centered on how to get the drugs and alcohol, when to get the drugs and alcohol, and/or how to get money for drugs and alcohol. In the first year of recovery, you may finally be aware of the damage that was done and even be conscious of how great life could be when your mind isn’t centered on drugs and alcohol.
Ability to Manage Finances Better
You may notice that in recovery you are able to save a lot of money since you won’t be spending all you have on alcohol and drugs anymore. Even if you aren’t able to keep that money, you will notice that you are able to pay bills on time, make financial amends, or at the very least, not scrape up change to feed your addiction any more.
You may notice that you are more emotionally stable in recovery from alcohol and drugs, especially when you compare it to how unstable you were in active addiction. You may even be able to hold a job now that you aren’t taking time off due to being sick in withdrawal, or too high or drunk to care about showing up. You might find that you are actually great at your job now that you can put all of your attention to the work you do when you are there. Even if you find yourself feeling up and down, it’s important to remind yourself how far you have come. There’s stability in your recovery.
The first year of recovery from alcohol and drugs can provide some wonderful rewards, but it isn’t like this for everyone at first. Sometimes, it takes even more work and even more time to make amends, get back what was lost due to your addiction, or adjust to your newfound life. During the first year of recovery, you may face new challenges that you pushed off during active addiction to alcohol and drugs. You could have a hard time dealing with stressful experiences, finding a job, or handling your bills. The reality is that the problems and stress in life don’t just go away when you get clean but you can work on healthy ways to deal with them instead of turning to alcohol and drugs which only bring you to a greater pain.
Recovery isn’t always easy, but it is worth it. You owe it to your loved ones and most importantly, yourself. You can create a beautiful life where you don‘t need to use alcohol and drugs. The first year can bring opportunities and challenges, but through it all, you get to experience it sober.
If you are active in addiction to drugs and alcohol, recovery is possible. You can get help now and recover from addiction, and you deserve to give yourself a chance at the life you truly deserve. Call The Watershed today for help at 1-800-861-1768.Tags: addiction recovery, alcohol addiction, drug addiction, Recovery