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Staying Connected in a Time of Disconnect

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Joe Hartwell, Alumni Care Coordinator

Greetings family,

In the spiritual life, what we think we are doing is actually being done to us. All we can do is say yes to it! During this time of crisis, the Origins Alumni Team has tripled our efforts in providing support to our future alumni leaving treatment and our current alumni across the country. We are introducing our future alumni to online Zoom meetings, showing them how to download and navigate the Zoom app, and giving them links to solid solution-based meetings along with alumni 12-Step contacts prior to leaving treatment. Each alumni is sent an invitation to our Origins Connect app, which continues to increase in number daily. “Life in the 12” webinars, Big Book webinars, alumni meetings online, “Something More” podcasts, and most recently Origins Alumni H & I meetings are really picking up momentum. We will also continue to reach out to our alumni with follow up calls. These calls are made the first 7 days, 30 days and every 2 months out for the first year.

The response to these efforts from our alumni have been nothing short of electric; there is a buzz in the air!

There is a sense that we are all in this together. Crisis seems to have the ability to pull us into oneness, oneness with each other, and GOD! I have experienced a deeper level of gratitude for the work that we get to do here at Origins. I am so thankful to get to be a small part of the greater whole. This is a community that vulnerably shares each other’s burdens through this time of crisis and humbly gives credit to God for all of our successes.

The alumni we are contacting seem to fall into one of two camps.

Many alumni are adapting and doing everything necessary to stay engaged in recovery; however, many others are simply doing nothing and using the state of the world as their sound reasoning. Experience shows that doing nothing is not sustainable for the real alcoholic and/or drug addict’s chance for recovery. We are encouraging all our alumni to be engaged in step work with a sponsor, attend Zoom meetings, be disciplined in prayer and meditation, attend Origins webinars and meetings, and stay in contact with others in recovery.

If you are struggling, please call us! We can help!

“Faith without work was dead, he said. And how appallingly true for the alcoholic (or drug addict)! For if an alcoholic failed to perfect and enlarge his spiritual life through WORK and SELF SACRIFICE FOR OTHERS (not when it’s convenient for me), he could not survive the certain trials and low spots ahead.” – Big Book, Page 14-15

On a personal note, I am finding myself seeking more and more through the spiritual disciplines of the program. I made a commitment to my sponsor around steps 10, 11, and 12. As I am writing this article, I am 14 for 14 with nightly reviews and morning /evening prayer and meditation, reaching out to at least two friends in the program a day, four to five Zoom meeting a week (not work-related), and going back through the work with two sponsees. It doesn’t sit well with my spirit today to suggest or encourage anyone to do something that I’m not currently practicing myself.

May God bless you and keep you safe!

Best, Joe