Those who are self-employed or who work in certain fields may be familiar with the concept of branding. A logo must be representative of a company and everything for which it stands. Sometimes a company’s logo may be representative of the company’s name itself. For instance, you don’t have to work too hard to identify a Ford Mustang or a laptop manufactured by Apple Computers. So why, you may wonder, does a treatment center called Amethyst Recovery have a butterfly as its logo? The answer is simple: rather than representing our name alone, the butterfly represents the changes that our patients can expect to see in themselves once they have finished treatment.
We understand that not all patients can identify the changes they have made. If we were always great about seeing ourselves objectively, many of us would likely have entered treatment much sooner. Rest assured, however, that these changes will occur in any patient who truly puts in the effort to accept the lessons they learn in treatment. Below, we will detail some of the primary changes that you can expect to see in patients who have undergone treatment at Amethyst Recovery.
Changes to Physical Health
Alcoholism and addiction are physically devastating diseases. We may suffer liver damage, kidney damage, damage to the lungs or to the heart—even brain damage is a distinct possibility. The specific nature of the damage done to the body will often depend upon the specific substance. But after prolonged use, it will be only a rare, lucky few who escape completely unscathed. We may gain or lose weight, we might develop eating disorders, or—in the case of those who share needles or engage in questionable sexual practices—we may develop fatal and potentially incurable diseases.
In some instances, such as the last we mentioned above, the damage can only be treated. In other cases, however, we may be able to reverse the damage done to us by our addictions. We can start eating better, exercising more, and paying better attention to our hygiene (which will be especially helpful to those who have suffered dental deterioration as a result of methamphetamine). Perhaps our tract marks will never disappear, and the scars of our drunken driving accidents will serve as constant reminders of where we have been and what we have done. But internally, the physical changes we experience will be profound.
Not only will we be at less risk of suffering damage, but we will begin to feel better as well. Early in recovery, we may go through a period during which our senses seem sharper, almost as if they are overcompensating for having been numbed for so long. We will have more energy, and our sleep patterns will begin to normalize over time. These changes may not be immediate, but we should begin experiencing them once the body has had time to detox fully. Those who have suffered particularly major withdrawal symptoms will be quite grateful for this change.
To some extent, we may even begin to look better. Those who have lost or gained massive amounts of weight due to eating disorders or other symptoms of the substances they abused will find themselves at a healthier weight (although this, too, will take some time). The dark circles under our eyes will begin to fade, allowing our face to regain its symmetry. Some changes may be almost imperceptible, but those who know us will recognize them almost instantly upon the first time seeing us out of treatment. And in time, we may even be able to look in the mirror and see them for ourselves.
In many ways, the butterfly is more representative of our mental and emotional changes than our physical ones. Yes, we will in many ways be physically transformed. But it is our free and unburdened mental state that will truly give us wings. Some of these mental and emotional changes are circumstantial, occurring naturally over the course of recovery. Others, however, are virtually requisite if we wish for our sobriety to last.
Circumstantial changes are laid out fairly well in the Twelve Promises. Upon realizing that life can be enjoyed without self-medicating through drugs and alcohol, we will experience a new freedom and a new happiness. And while we may feel much guilt over some of our actions during active addiction, we will eventually come to appreciate our history for how it has helped us become who we are today. As our patients go on special therapeutic outings on the weekends and engage in helpful group therapy, these changes will grow stronger and stronger over the course of their treatment.
Then, there are the changes we must make ourselves. We must learn how to stop holding resentments. We must learn to let go of such negative traits as anger and selfishness. This will take a lot of work, but it will become easier over time. Some patients may still have occasional struggles with these issues after leaving treatment—thus is the nature of the human condition. Even so, we often find that it is during our journey toward sobriety that we discover the tools which will help us the most in laying our inner demons to rest and beginning to accept life on its own terms. The freedom that accompanies this realization is one which we have often overlooked, but it is one of the most profound benefits of recovery that every newly sober addict and alcoholic will experience.
Once we find that our emotional and mental states are much better regulated without the “help” of drugs and alcohol, we can begin experiencing life in a brand new way. This is when we truly spread our wings and fly. True, we must still focus occasionally on important aspects of relapse prevention and emotional stability. Nonetheless, it will be far better to do so when sober than when impaired. And in many ways, this concept leads into the spiritual benefits of sobriety.
The Spiritual Side of Things
It is difficult to acquire spiritual health if our mental and emotional health has been left by the wayside. Spirituality is the way in which we define our own concept of balance in the universe, and it is therefore important to remember that we can only experience the universe through our own eyes. No matter which approach we take to the concept of a Higher Power or the benefits of Step Two and Step Three, we must nonetheless define our own concept of the spiritual. And in forming this definition, we will often grow in incredibly new ways.
The spiritual solution required for addiction recovery is not something we address lightly. We do not necessarily believe that a spiritual solution must be a religious one, although we do offer our Alpha Series of classes for Christians who feel that they will be aided by viewing recovery through the lens of scripture. But others, those who are agnostic, questioning, or simply practicing a less “common” religion, may still benefit from the concept of spirituality. As we note in our article on true faith, spirituality requires us to accept the world as it is rather than as we would have it.
Like many of the changes we have mentioned above, these spiritual changes will take time. It is not as simple as willing oneself to feel differently on a spiritual level. Perhaps it will begin at this step, but it takes a great deal of practice and fortitude to truly develop a spiritual consciousness. It might take a great deal of meditation, or simply time to develop the very idea of the spiritual realm. No matter what it takes, our patients will have the time to figure this out for themselves. This is one thing that we cannot force upon our patients. Nonetheless, we can at least offer them time to reach a spiritual conclusion based upon their own beliefs.
Amethyst Recovery is a treatment center that cares about our patients. It is our duty to ensure that the changes they make under our care, whether spiritual or otherwise, will ultimately help aid their recovery. The changes we make when facing our addictions will ultimately decide who we become when sober. These should always be taken seriously. Amethyst Recovery is a transformative treatment center, and this alone is one of the many reasons you should consider us when seeking care. For more information, contact us today.