Exploring the River of Addiction

Exploring the River of Addiction

Dear Friend,

As the temperatures climb into the 90s, many of us in Asheville are looking for ways to stay cool. At Next Step Recovery, one of our favorite ways is to grab a raft, inner tube, kayak, or canoe and spend a few hours in a mountain river going with the flow or running some rapids. It’s a great way to beat the heat, and something we always look forward to doing together.

No substances needed. Just add water.

As much fun as it is, we remember to have a healthy respect for the river as well. We wear life jackets and helmets if we’re going to run the rapids. We use the buddy system in case someone gets stuck in an eddy or a rock punctures their inflatable. We make sure we stay hydrated and protect ourselves from sunburn, especially if we’re going to be on the river for several hours. So while river running is a blast, it’s not without some risks—which is what makes it the perfect outdoor adventure. Anticipating and navigating risks is an important skill we practice every day in recovery.

In fact, the river itself is a great metaphor for helping others understand addiction and recovery, especially if they’ve not experienced these things firsthand. We’ve explored this metaphor with our residents and their families, and it has produced some interesting “aha” moments. But don’t take my word for it. See for yourself.

If you or someone you know is struggling to keep their head above water, we can help. Give us a call at 828-350-9960 or email me at susan@nextsteprecovery.com to learn more about our transitional living facility for men and recovery resources in Western North Carolina.

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