Category Archives: Coping with Dis-Ease

A Recovering Addict’s Guide for Surviving the Holidays

If you are newly clean and sober, I’m sure you are experiencing a lot of holiday anxiety right about now. Don’t worry, it’s normal. It happens to all of us- even those of us with several years of recovery under our belts. My first sober Christmas was spent behind bars. That was difficult for a [Read more…]

Is Addiction A Disease or a Choice?

As a recovering addict, I wholeheartedly adhere to the disease model of addiction; many of us addicts do. The disease model believes that alcoholism and drug addiction are chronic brain diseases characterized by chemical malfunctions in the frontal lobe, mid-brain, certain neurotransmitters, reward structures, motivation and memory. Many people who have not struggled with addiction, [Read more…]

Sobriety Is Not Simply Abstaining From Alcohol

Our society lives and breathes for a quick fix. We scoff at the idea of having to sit with uncomfortable emotions or physical sensations. Have a headache? There’s a pill for that. Having trouble sleeping? There’s a pill for that. Having a hard time accepting your weight? There’s a pill (and a program) for that. [Read more…]

Coping With Dis-Ease: Emotional Integration

Yesterday was my birthday. Actually, it was the second anniversary of my 30th birthday. I decided last year that all birthdays from here on out would be phrased in this manner; it makes the idea of eventually turning 40 and 50 slightly less intimidating. The day started out fairly rocky; my husband’s been stressed to [Read more…]

Coping With Dis-Ease: Airplanes and Mindfulness Meditation

Six years ago I had a panic attack on an airplane. I had never experienced a panic attack prior to that occasion and was sure the constricted breathing, numbness in my arms and legs, chest pain, dizziness, and tunnel vision meant I was dying. Fortunately for me, there was a doctor and a therapist on [Read more…]

Coping With Dis-ease: Slowing into Chronic Illness

I hate the word chronic, I do. Anything that implies permanence does not sit well with me. I think as human beings we are innately drawn toward change because change is intrinsically part of the human condition. We began as cells, cells that were changing- evolving- morphing into other cells that began to form organs. [Read more…]

Coping With Dis-ease: Coloring

It was my first night in a residential treatment center for eating disorders. I was nineteen, scared, and alone. I had just gotten off the phone with my parents who were half a world away; I was in Arizona and they were in Brussels, Belgium. I hung up the phone and cried hysterically. Tears poured [Read more…]