Posted by Steps to Recovery on January 26, 2013

There were so many times in my life before sobriety that I quit using for short periods but always came back to my addiction. “Life is boring without drugs” was a pretty constant excuse for me. When I wasn’t high, I didn’t feel any eagerness to do things, I just wanted to sleep, I didn’t want to think about things, and one of the worst problems for me was that it was really hard to connect to my creativity.

I felt for so long that without drugs, I couldn’t think about things the same way, with the same level of critical thinking. Things all looked different without drugs, bland really. Drugs spiced everything up and made life look so exciting, which inspired my creativity, because I could see potential in anything. I had so many great ideas! Even though I rarely completed a project, at least I had the ideas. Without drugs, it seemed like creative inspiration was really hard to come by.

In early recovery I really struggled with this. I feel like I am a really artistic person, in that I love doing art, even if I don’t think I’m the best artist. Painting, pastels, photography and especially writing. All of these things take vision, and I felt that without my drug of choice, I just didn’t have it. People in my recovery program told me to just wait, it would come. So I did, and in the meantime, I felt really empty. But gradually, as I made myself do art and writing around my recovery experience, I began to realize that it’s just all from a different perspective.

Nothing looks the same in recovery. And sometimes it’s really hard to find the energy to look for inspiration. But when you really connect, when you are really present in your life, body and environment, inspiration is everywhere. One day I found myself photographing the cloth diapers hanging on my clothesline. Because I was able to really take a look at them, I found beauty in the weave of the fabric and the vibrance of the colors. How beautiful, and what vision and creativity it took for someone to discover how to weave and dye fabric, and sew it all together to make a cute little diaper.

Then I found myself noticing these tiny flowers in the lawn, and upon closer observation I could see the entire universe folded up within the petals. And I wrote and wrote my heart out about these flowers, the inspiration I found in the beauty of the intricacies of such a tiny thing…Is the beauty all things share.

It takes time, but life is so much better without drugs. When your body has detoxed and you are starting to feel better..When you can begin looking outside of yourself with your real eyes, when you can really stay present in your body, environment, in your life…When you feel safe enough to open yourself up to the world, you will find that life is beautiful, so much deeper and more fulfilling.

Did you feel a disconnect with your creativity in recovery? How did you call it back into your life?