LIVING AUTHENICALLY AND HELPING OTHERS – WENDY BLANCHARD, M.S., CHHC

Always putting my self care ahead of everything else allows me to step back into alignment when I am feeling off balance…

I have specific tools that I know I must use in order to remain in a WELLNESS mindset, and my first “go-to” when I am struggling with anxiety is getting myself to the gym. Some days I have to remind myself that each day is different for me as I live with some health challenges…and some days I need my trainer to remind me that just showing up is a great part of self care. I can be hard on myself.

I share most everything that I experience as a THRIVER in SUD Recovery, and as a Holistic Health Counselor to offer hope and inspiration to others. I still live with anxiety and sometimes sadness, and guilt about the years spent living with SUD, and the effects it had on my family and friends. And then yesterday, a friend of 40 years, Bill, tells me how everyone close to me who knows my journey are all so proud of my recovery and all I do each day to help others. And my children who tell me they are so proud, and my son who tells me I’ve been “his inspiration these past almost 6 years”…and then I reflect in meditation and have to agree that I am doing an awesome job…My trainer reminded me today to stay in a positive mindset, and use positive self talk after I criticized my body in a photo she took of me today.  I hated the way my face looked, and said I had so much body work to do…

I was under anesthesia for an hour yesterday for two procedures and still feeling exhausted and my face reflected it…I didn’t want to post the photo…but then I reminded myself the purpose of my sharing my journey…AUTHENTICALLY. I am not perfect, and I want to inspire others to love and accept themselves AS THEY ARE. No matter what we are going through, we must remember that we are all doing the best we can…and that is enough…I AM ENOUGH.

After my workout, I stopped at the gym counter to order a recovery shake. I began a conversation with two young people, one who is also in SUD Recovery…We had a long conversation and I realized that being my authentic self is all that I need to help another person.  This young man told me that he finds it so difficult to say aloud that he is in recovery, and I told him that I am so proud of him because there is no shame in recovering from a disease, any disease, and in fact, it is to be admired. It takes a lot of courage to show up when we are not looking or feeling our best…or to speak our truth when we have no idea how others will react that we are in recovery because of the stigma attached to this brain disease called SUD…yet today, I observed so much authenticity…within myself, and within this young person which validates my reasons for sharing my journey in total transparency and vulnerability.

Each morning in my prayer and meditation I ask the universe to show me where to go, who to see, what to say, and to whom to help one other person. Once again, today my prayer was answered…and I am completely and totally humbled and grateful to be able to share my journey with others in the hopes of inspiring them to live their lives authentically, to work hard in recovery, to practice self care and self love, to believe in themselves as they are, to pay it forward, and to never give up.

Thank you to my dearest and lifelong friends Bill, and Miriam, who took the time yesterday to remind me of my incredible and inspirational journey that also offers inspiration to others…that I am never alone…and that I am so loved.

Love and blessings,

Wendy

 

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