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Recovery is Real

Sometimes you find your cause. Sometimes it finds you.

A quick flashback:
I’m in the E.R. waiting room in Laramie, Wyoming. My sister has passed out at the post office and had a seizure so the ambulance rushed her here. The E.R. doc calls me into his office. He says, “That kind of seizure happens to people when the brain reacts to the removal of alcohol from the system. People with addiction to alcohol.” I nod but say nothing. He clears his throat. “If she doesn’t get sober soon, she’ll die.”

The short version of this story: my sister, Laura, spent a decade of her life falling into the hell hole of addiction. She went to treatment six times before she crawled out. She stays out of it one day at a time.

"Hope is like a road in the country; there wasn't ever a road, but when many people walk on it, the road comes into existence."  —LIN YUTANG

My name is Lynn Griffith Carlson. I am a family member of a person in long-term recovery from substance use disorder. I have seen in my own life that the road to recovery not only exists, it is becoming more and more well-traveled.

Recovery is real.

Spreading that message is my cause.

After she got sober, my sister founded a nonprofit that supports people who are seeking long-term recovery: Recover Wyoming. I helped her get this organization off the ground in ways that I could (training, grant writing, cheerleading). It’s going strong 12 years later, with new staff, serving more people, in more ways, than we could have imagined.

I’m also a family member Recovery Coach for Recover Wyoming. In that role I act as a peer mentor to spouses, siblings, and parents of people struggling to help their loved ones find sobriety. I draw on what I learned to do (and not do) when my sister was deep in her addiction to alcohol—something I wrote about on the Faces and Voices of Recovery blog – you can read it here.

What if I combined my passion for recovery with my love of writing?

Beware those late-night ideas, right?

With a lot of work and assistance, Watch My Rising: A Recovery Anthology was published by TulipTree Publishing, LLC. This anthology is made up of 37 poems and stories about recovery from addiction. I wrote one of the stories, titled “With All Due Respect.” It tells about a trip I took to Sheridan, Wyoming in the middle of winter to retrieve Laura after she left treatment early.

I may have helped this anthology be born, but like a restless teenager, it has taken off on its own. In addition to being a resource for people seeking recovery, it’s used by 12 Step groups, church groups, and therapists, to name a few.

I can never thank enough the 30 other writers who contributed to this anthology, proudly putting their names with their stories and poems. We all did, in our quest to do our part to remove the stigma from speaking out about addiction.


Faces & Voices of Recovery

If you want to find out more about the Recovery Movement, I encourage you to visit the Faces and Voices of Recovery website. There are tons of resources there.


And if you’re in Wyoming, know that Recover Wyoming is there for you and your family.

Watch My Rising_ A Recovery Anthology

You can get a copy of Watch My Rising on Recover Wyoming's website. If you like what you see about Recover Wyoming and the amazing work they do, I invite you to donate while there.

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