Category - Lisa Mugford

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The Bigger Picture
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Family Recovery
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Grateful Alcoholic
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Lisa Mugford, The North Central Vermont Recovery Center

The Bigger Picture

By: Emma Benard 

What has been most helpful in my personal recovery, as well as in my work with others in recovery, is the concept of looking at the bigger picture.

The bigger picture includes those things outside yourself that make life exciting, fulfilling, and complex. The bigger picture includes family, friends, occupation, nature, and hobbies. The bigger picture includes your life, years and years from now, and your personal goals and aspirations. The bigger picture also includes hope, faith, and courage!

Remembering the bigger picture can help immensely when you may be feeling stuck in your recovery, afraid or hesitant to move forward and to move past or eradicate behaviors that are no longer serving you for the better. This is because it challenges you to see more clearly all life has to offer and all you have to offer to life!

The opposite of the bigger picture is what you could call your own inner world. This particular inner world I am speaking of may be fully or partially run by your addiction, obsession, disorder, negative self-talk, etc.

Though I do very much believe there are different kinds of inner worlds, some being very healing and positive, for this blog post I am focusing on the inner world that keeps you trapped in some way. This kind of inner world is often what blocks out any hope that is being offered by the bigger picture of life. This inner world is what keeps you focused on the things that in the long run, are making you feel miserable and stagnant. This inner world is focused on “me” and has trouble viewing the world apart from that focus.

When this inner world is in charge, life revolves around all of the behaviors and urges associated with your personal struggles in recovery. This often leads to feeling alone and terrified of change, especially positive change, because that is of a whole other realm. That means bringing in the bigger picture and allowing yourself to look past your troubles and to the possibility of change and personal growth.

I challenge you to honestly reflect on how you are currently living your life in regards to the bigger picture versus your inner world. Are they balanced or is one overpowering the other? What does the bigger picture mean to you? What do you really want for your life, considering the bigger picture?

My inner world wants to keep me small, wants to stifle my voice, wants to punish me, wants to control me. My inner world is currently run by fear, anxiety, sadness, and pain. When I take in the wisdom that comes through looking at the bigger picture, I suddenly and powerfully remember that I want to feel free, that I want to share love and compassion, and that I want to make a positive difference. This is the core of my recovery and keeps my light burning inside. This is what I hope for you to find and to nourish, your wisdom through the bigger picture!

Family Recovery

By: Lisa Mugford

family-recovery-banner

Recovery is a process. All of us in recovery are at different stages and in different places. We follow our own path with guidance from our peers, our family, and our communities.

Lamoille County is a community which supports recovery with many resources. The North Central Vermont Recovery Center in Morrisville supports all paths to recovery including writing, art, and music. That being said, I want to share a couple writings by my 23- year- old daughter, Emma. Emma is in recovery at this point in her life and I am so very grateful. Addiction in my family is prevalent, touching all of us. With many prayers and a lot of recovery work, I am proud to say my family now celebrates recovery.

Here are just a couple powerful writings my daughter Emma has created to express herself in her recovery. We hope they can help others who identify in some way.

 

The Moons Behind My Eyes

Look into my eyes and notice –
they are darker than a nightmare,
swimming with secrets and thoughts
that I can’t tell you because they would make you shiver,
because for some twisted but understandable reason
these negative forces feed into the part of me that wants to be punished
for who I am.

Nobody wants to feel this way unless it,
for some reason, becomes familiar and even safe
to feel this way
But even then…

To remember this, helps:
We all seek belonging
in a world where we are all connected
yet at times feel painfully alone
We are all born from the stars
My heart is made of angel wings
My skin is birch bark that peels in the summertime
and my lips – the petals of a white rose
What are you made of?

My eyes have turned black as the thoughts race through my veins,
ache in my stomach But behind my eyes are two full moons,
and the moon never ceases to appear,
glowing through the dark

Warriors

You say I’m a warrior
But why do I feel like the war zone itself
Tangled up with ashes and blood
There goes a stream of dark tears
Watch it turn into a river I swear
It will

You say I’m a warrior
But I’ve been killed in my own war many times
The will to live resuscitating my body
Afraid to die, afraid
To live
Like this

You say I’m a warrior
I’m trying to believe
I am courage, light, spirit

Thank you for saying that I’m a warrior
Sometimes it takes another warrior
Who has also been through trials and immense suffering
To remind you that you’re one, too

You say I’m a warrior
Please look in the mirror
Let’s stand together
Our smoky eyes of war
Gleam with peace

Both poems by Emma Benard


Lisa Mugford volunteers and works part time at The North Central Vermont Recovery Center in Morrisville. The Recovery Center provides a supportive, welcoming, safe, and substance-free environment for individuals and families on their paths to lasting recovery from drugs and alcohol. Lisa writes for the Recovery Center, which means her blog posts are inspirational, real, and sometimes heart breaking. She lives in Waterbury, VT and owns a business in Stowe.

Grateful Alcoholic

By: Lisa Mugford

 

Addiction recovery

Grateful by definition: Deeply appreciative of kindness or benefits received; thankful.

Alcoholic by definition: One who has a chronic disorder marked by excessive and usually compulsive drinking of alcohol leading to psychological and physical dependence or addiction.

Let us take the term “Grateful Alcoholic.” Do you understand it? Connect with it? Disagree with it? Sounds like an oxymoron to me, but let’s explore the deeper meaning of this term and how it relates to my own recovery, which in turn might allow you to discover what it means to yours.

My name is Lisa and I’m a grateful alcoholic in recovery. Yes, grateful.

Am I grateful that I drank alcoholically for so many years? NO! Am I grateful that alcohol got me into trouble many times throughout high school, college, and into adulthood? Negative! Am I grateful for countless missed opportunities, most which I am probably unaware of? Heck no! Am I grateful that I lied, cheated, and stole to get alcohol? I think not! Am I grateful that I chose alcohol over my family, friends, and co-workers? Nope!

You might ask then, why am I grateful? Take a guess! I have a feeling you might be able to figure it out. And if you’re a Grateful Alcoholic yourself, or a grateful individual despite any hardships such as mental or physical illness, please share below why you are grateful, or why you are not.

Thanks so much for reading. I look forward to hearing from you.


Lisa Mugford volunteers and works part time at The North Central Vermont Recovery Center in Morrisville. The Recovery Center provides a supportive, welcoming, safe, and substance-free environment for individuals and families on their paths to lasting recovery from drugs and alcohol. Lisa writes for the Recovery Center, which means her blog posts are inspirational, real, and sometimes heart breaking. She lives in Waterbury, VT and owns a business in Stowe.

Lisa Mugford, The North Central Vermont Recovery Center

Lisa MugfordLisa Mugford volunteers and works part time at The North Central Vermont Recovery Center in Morrisville. The Center provides a supportive, welcoming, safe, and substance-free environment for individuals and families on their paths to lasting recovery from drugs and alcohol. Lisa writes for the Recovery Center, which means her blog posts are inspirational, real, and sometimes heart breaking.

Lisa has been in recovery from alcohol addiction for eight years. Recovery is the most important thing in her life, because it has changed her life! She lives in Waterbury, VT and owns a business in Stowe.