People find addiction recovery in several ways. However, for a significant number of men and women with severe conditions, detox and addiction treatment is a must. Without a safe environment to establish a program of recovery, long-term progress is unlikely. The healing process does not stop when one is discharged from treatment. Continued mental and spiritual maintenance is vital to achieving lasting addiction recovery.
What does “continued maintenance” look like? For many, it means joining a mutual-help group like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous. Any one of the many fellowships that utilize the 12 Step principles. Since making progress in recovery depends on working with and helping others, it is vital to be immersed in a fellowship.
“You can’t keep it if you don’t give it away” is often said in the rooms of recovery. This means that if a person wants to keep the positive gains they’ve made in the program, they must find some way to give it back to others. Paying it forward is one of the primary reasons that millions of people around the globe can acquire significant lengths of recovery time.
Emerging from the darkness of addiction into the light of recovery is a monumental task that requires dedication. For more than 80 years, people in Alcoholics Anonymous have carried the message of recovery to the newcomer, and the cycle continues. Those who practice the 12 Step principles in all their affairs (as best they can) not only heal, they prosper.
Guidance for carrying the message of recovery appears in the book titled Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How Many Thousands of Men and Women Have Recovered from Alcoholism. Most people refer to the primary text of AA as simply “The Big Book.”
The Big Book Turns 80
It’s fitting that Alcohol Awareness Month occurs at an essential time for Alcoholics Anonymous. In April 1939, 5,000 copies of The Big Book were printed. Today, more than 30 million copies and several editions are in existence. Many of the more than 20 million people in recovery for alcohol use disorder are grateful for The Big Book and the fellowship that relies on it.
The original manuscript, primarily written by Bill W., was edited by other founding members to become the first edition of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. On April 18, the owner of the manuscript put it up for display at the Fairbanks Hospital’s annual fundraiser dinner at the Westin Indianapolis, according to IndyStar. Next, the text will head to the “cradle of AA,” Akron, Ohio, for public display in honor of Dr. Bob Smith for Founders Day in June.
While there is some controversy surrounding the ownership of the original manuscript, replete with handwritten comments by the founders, it is nice that the public will have a chance to be in its presence. The owner of the Indianapolis Colts, Jim Irsay, purchased the manuscript at auction for $2.4 million. Irsay is in recovery.
“Jim Irsay wants the book to be a beacon of hope for those afflicted with addiction issues, to be a positive conversation starter to help reduce the stigma of addiction,” said Larry Hall, vice president of special projects and historical affairs for the Colts. “It’s a very powerful book.”
The 161-page manuscript evolved over the years; the fourth edition is in print and translations appear 67 different languages. People in recovery in Akron the first weekend in June may be able to catch a glance of the original manuscript at the home of Dr. Bob.
Addiction Recovery in Southern California
At Pacific Shores Recovery Center, our credentialed team of addiction professionals can help your loved one heal from addiction and learn how to lead a life in addiction recovery. We rely on a combination of 12 Step principles, group and individual therapy, and evidence-based modalities to help clients find new hope and a new life. Please contact us today to learn more.