RECOVERY SPEAKS – WENDY BLANCHARD, M.S., CHHC

Recovery SPOKE today…it didn’t whisper, it screamed, “We do recover!”

I walked in the Friends of Recovery NY-Orange County “Run/Walk for Recovery” event this morning with my daughter, Nicole, who is also in recovery from addiction and co-occurring disorders. For many years, I struggled and nearly died from this progressive brain disease, as well as co-occurring disorders. Addiction is genetic, and my daughter too, struggled and nearly died from this progressive brain disease many times over, even suffering a couple of mini strokes that temporarily left her paralyzed.

As I walked the course on this beautiful morning, I witnessed my precious, beautiful daughter run her first event in early recovery, and as she ran off on the course, I stopped walking for one moment to say, “Thank you,” to God/Universe for saving her life. I watched her run with enthusiasm and purpose in this urgent cause where she wants to carry the message of recovery, to SPEAK, to be a voice and a healer for those suffering with Addiction…along with her mama.

People come to these events to celebrate recovery, to raise awareness and to end stigma, and to also be with a community that truly understands this disease as they have suffered with it themselves, or have watched a loved one suffer, or have lost a loved one to Addiction. The support and camaraderie in the Recovery community SPEAKS loud and clear…WE DO RECOVER…we speak as one voice…to make the necessary changes that are needed to offer folks proper care, to end stigma, to raise hope and awareness, and to offer sustainable solutions to recovery.

When I go out to speak to legislators, or groups such as Friends of Recovery and Families Together NYS, and when I write about my journey, I always talk about my own Wellness Approach to Addiction Recovery. I recovered, and manage my sobriety through natural and organic solutions that are sustainable as I rely on alternative modalities that allowed me to heal, and to continue to promote wellness, on a cellular level. In order to be completely free of this disease, we have to be willing to have an open, ongoing dialogue about addiction, we need the leaders of our country to listen, to help us to formulate a plan, and to continually assess every aspect of addiction ongoing from our DNA, environmental factors including the food that we eat, and learned behaviors that we can definitely change to new and healthy behaviors, such as mindfulness training, DBT, meditation, a daily spiritual practice, and CBT, and with this proper care and guidance, we can promote a positive and healthy mindset that will give each individual who has this disease a chance to start over, and to create and enjoy a lifelong, successful recovery. I SPEAK about this from experience…healing with natural and organic solutions promotes a sustainable lifelong recovery.

In my Holistic Health Practice as I counsel clients who are seeking recovery from any addiction, I tell them we must explore the modalities that work for them, AND it is important to have at least three months of clean time before working with me on a holistic path. Once they are stabilized, then I am able to work with them as an adjunct to Functional medicine, Spiritual Counseling, Energy Healing, therapy, Life Transitions Coaching, and offer them a wide variety of tools and natural and organic choices to explore in recovery including stress management, organic nutrition through a blood type diet, exercise based on blood type, meditation, use of essential oils, and addiction counseling through my own experience on my journey. Everyone is different, and each individual will find what resonates with their blood type, personality, body type, environment, and health and wellness goals. Once they begin to implement these natural and organic solutions, they can begin to slowly build on these lifestyle changes. We can “phase in” more and more natural and organic solutions into their nutritional plan, body, mind, and spirit, until their lifestyle changes are based on a holistic health practice…slowly…naturally…organically…healing occurs on a cellular level eliminating the need for medication, in most cases. It takes awhile. It takes patience. It takes dedication. It takes hunger for a clean life. It takes believing in the process and in yourself. It takes connection. I believe that a HUGE part of healing from any addiction is CONNECTION. It takes the mindfulness that transformation will occur if you nurture it…self love, self care.

The body will heal from disease if we believe, and give it time. My addiction was active for 40 years. It took awhile for my body to cleanse itself, and to get accustomed to the new and unfamiliar, healthy foods, supplements, exercises, spiritual practice, and healthy behaviors…my diet used to consist of pills, carbs and water, AND I have arrived on the other side of addiction…naturally and organically, and so excited and eager to SPEAK about it as an alternative path to recovery. I have learned through much hard work and dedication how to sustain my sobriety, and how to live a full, energetic, meaningful life coming from a place of love, gratitude, and connection.

We are an addicted nation whether it is to the foods that we eat that are filled with sugar and high fructose corn syrup, gluten, dairy, and the grains that are grossly processed making it impossible for human beings to digest, causing an incredible amount of systemic inflammation with pathways leading directly to the brain, and also negatively affecting our immune system, and actually compromising it, which affects every fiber of our being from being in optimal health…causing dis-ease.

We must transform this nation’s health offering nutritional support for the body, mind and soul, and we must start with continued research, funding, and events that raise awareness on this disease, and offering organic foods and alternative treatments as medicine rather than pills. We must offer sustainable positive changes to our lifestyle, one that boasts “I can and do recover,” as in the message that Friends Of Recovery boasts…not one that has us say aloud daily, “I am an addict,” which sends a negative connotation to our brain which is vibrational and settles deep within the cells of our organs…which causes dis-ease. We can create a new and healthy body, and mind, which is great food for the soul when we tell ourselves, “We are survivors,” and further “Let thy food be thy medicine.”

It is vital for us to stay connected to events that continue to raise awareness about the disease of Addiction. People band together where they have a deep and similar experience in suffering. I surround myself with people from the Recovery Community as well as the Holistic Community, and to me, that is a perfect prescription for sustainable recovery. My daughter excitedly said to me today, “I like your friends!” She felt so connected, and this is what we all need…to feel loved, to feel connected, to feel accepted…going within to start the process to find our own Source of Power and Inner Wisdom that SPEAKS to us…that tells us WE ARE WORTH RECOVERING. This IS the first step. Listen to your intuition…It will SPEAK to you. Do not doubt your intuition…follow your heart, and your mind won’t be far behind. Our hearts are lead by our soul…our mind by our ego…Ego keeps us stuck in FEAR…Our soul leads with love. RECOVERY IS LOVE…OF ONESELF…BODY, MIND AND SOUL. FEED IT…NATURALLY AND ORGANICALLY…FOOD FOR THE SOUL.

Congratulations to everyone who came today to SPEAK UP in one way or another. I am so proud and honored to be a part of it all.

Are you ready to SPEAK UP? Your RECOVERY is one word away, “YES.”

Wishing you harmonious health 4 life!

Love and blessings,

Wendy

I WANT TO SAY A HEARTFELT “THANK YOU” TO STEPHANIE CAMPBELL, DIRECTOR OF POLICY, FRIENDS OF RECOVERY-NY, AND KATHLEEN KATT-BENNIE, PREVENTION SERVICE COORDINATOR, RCADD, FOR REACHING OUT TO MY DAUGHTER, NICOLE, AND MAKING HER FEEL SO WELCOME IN OUR COMMUNITY. YOU ARE BOTH LEADERS IN THIS CAUSE, AND SO INSPIRING. 

Kathleen, Me, Nicole, and Stephanie...Walking the walk in Recovery

Kathleen, Me, Nicole, and Stephanie…Walking the walk in Recovery

Me and Nicole "walking the walk" in recovery FOR-Orange

Me and Nicole “walking the walk” in recovery
FOR-Orange

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