From time to time, I like to mix things up in my alcohol and drug treatment recovery. Sure, I go to meetings. I don’t go as much as I used to, but I make sure I attend meetings – at least once a week. Typically the volume of weekly or monthly meetings invariably reflects the week or month I am having. Yes, I’ve been known to drive myself crazy, and then realized I missed a weekly meeting. I’ve learned this lesson the hard way after having taking way too much time away, and experiencing an emotional and spiritual relapse. Really, the only thing I didn’t do was pick up drugs and alcohol. I was a bear to be around.
Over the weekend, I was talking about doing something different concerning my recovery. My quest, my desire if you will, is see and do something a bit different for me, but also maintaining traditions and 12-step teachings. He suggested I try a Buddhist sanghas meeting that meets twice a week. I have to say, I balked a bit, but he encouraged me to go.
So, there I am sitting in a large room, a large mat, and many small, black, round pillows. I sat down, my friend next to me. I felt silly to be honest. I am, even after 20 years, a minimal meditator. I find it difficult to sit still in my mind, even when I know it’s good for me to do it. But, I work on it. I sat, legs crossed (the lotus position is beyond me at this point), back straight, didn’t engage my core, and then before we started a Buddhist practitioner who is in recovery explained how to mediate. Sit quietly, and then as thoughts, noises and motions come into play around us, we need to simply acknowledge these moments and then say goodbye as we move back to focusing on our own breathing – in, out, in out.
Even as pain crept into my hip flexors, I maintained my positioning. Even thoughts, movements and noise happened around me, I was able to focus on breathing, while never maintaining thought for too long. I believe it worked. After we’ve sat for the 20 minutes, there was a chance for the practitioner to share on something based around the topic. Typically they take three months and work thought the Steps and then Recovery. The focus it place a Buddhist spin on these topics.
Am I sold? No, not yet, but my friend is so, for lack of better words, ‘Zen-like’ that I think I’ll continue going back for a few months.
Recovery Rob BIO
Recovery Rob is a 48-year-old man who has more than twenty years of sobriety, whose drugs of choice at one time were alcohol and drugs, and he has worked in and around the field of addiction for more than 20 years. Having just recently launched his own website, www.askrecoveryrob.com, he hopes to reach out and continue to help others who work through their process of addiction and recovery. Recovery Rob is a professional writer who has published two novels and is currently working on his third. He has been writing and working as Pat Moore Foundation’s premiere blogger and content writer, which helps keeps Pat Moore Foundation’s addiction and recovery blog top-rated.