Wednesday, February 4, 2009
WFMW: Celebrate Recovery
This month I am participating in Bipolar Awareness Month with other bloggers. So my WFMW posts this month will be things that work for me in living successfully with my mental illness. I'm hoping to tie what works for me into things that non-mentally ill people can use in their own life or just have more awareness of the illness.
Today what works for me is Celebrate Recovery. Our church is in its 5th year of having the Celebrate Recovery ministry. A concise explanation of CR is that it is a Christian 12-step program that also has 8 Biblical principles. It is for anyone with hurts, hang-ups and habits - which means it is open to all of us sinners. The open share group that I am a member has been typically people who are dealing with a mental illness and co-dependence. There is another group that has been typically women dealing with alcoholism/substance abuse. This isn't always the case, but I find it helpful to be in a open share group with similar issues.
What CR is not is a place to 'get fixed' and get counseling. A very important part of the guidelines is that we are not there to fix each other. I go to work on my stuff. I have made friends through the CR ministry and we sometimes spur each other on to work on our steps. But as a person struggling with codependency I have to be careful not to try to 'fix' other and also not depend on someone else to work on my own recovery.
Just this week I started a 'Step Study'. It is a 12-month long program that takes you through the 12-steps. Committing to something for 12-months is daunting and a little overwhelming. This week we went over group guidelines and I felt the same way I always felt at the beginning of a new school year. I know that the guidelines are important to having a successful group and they will become normal to me soon.
So that is what works for me - Celebrate Recovery in general and a Step Study specifically to help me work my 12 steps.