Category Archives: Events

An Invitation: Alternative Roads to Recovery Telesummit



Hey, everyone. How’s it going? I hope you’re all well, but however you are, I’m glad you’re here. Honestly, and not because I’m about to tout something (‘cuz…I am), but because if you’re here, then it means you’re a seeker, someone open, someone dedicated to finding what works for you, and not afraid to use it!

Perhaps LifeRing’s it, perhaps it’s not quite it but just one piece of your recovery program, perhaps it’s still a puzzle you’re trying to put together – and that’s not a bad thing.

There’s been lots of talk lately about “multiple pathways to recovery”, and it’s been music to my ears. This wasn’t necessarily the case when I got started on my own journey – in fact, it took some real digging through the labyrinthine interwebs just to find LifeRing. At the time it seemed if it was that difficult, then it must be a dubious source of sobriety support. I waded in cautiously, but even then something about it just…felt…right. So I dove in headfirst, and I’ve never looked back.

Now I consider all the other folks who found LifeRing and other means of support such as (just to name a few) S.O.S., SMART Recovery, or Rational Recovery way earlier than I did as sources of not just personal inspiration but a testament to something else, something far more important: They were, and are, pioneers in addiction recovery. Living, breathing examples that what they’ve done, walking whatever path they’ve chosen, works for them. The fact that their lives – and the lives of their families, friends, co-workers, and society in general – were and are improved for the better is reason enough alone to prove those paths legit, and that that’s all that really matters.

Somewhere along the line other folks,  both in and out of the greater recovery community, took notice and have come to the conclusion that this is OK to do. In fact, the concept has gotten so much attention and gained such unprecedented importance it’s now a movement, peopled by those deeply committed to saving as many lives as possible, who are open to the reality that people need all the help they can get, in any way that works for them.

One such person is a guy by the name of William White, a professional researcher with a Masters in Addiction Studies who’s worked in the addiction treatment and research fields since 1969 and was one of the first to get on board with the multiple pathways concept. (He’s also the author of a book some of you may have heard of – or even read – called “Slaying the Dragon – The History of Addiction and Recovery in America”.)

He also writes about all kinds of different things recovery-related on his blog, The William White Papers. In a recent post of his I found that he’s taken the concept even further, one that many of us have been living in our own recoveries for years now as well, and that’s of a recovery mosaic. A bright, colorful mishmash that’s not a “pathway” so much as as of little dabs of this and nice dollops of that, all melded together to create one beautiful, harmonious whole. It doesn’t necessarily mean just meetings or other mutual support aids anymore, either – it includes mindfulness practices, yoga, Buddhist teachings, hot wax therapies

OK, not the hot wax, but anyhoo, you get the idea. And so…if you’re looking for ways to create, or expand, your own mosaic/pathway, I’m most happy to let you know that LifeRing will be participating in a 5-day telesummit coming up on August 15 – 19th. Hosted by Recovery Life Management’s Beverly Sartain, it’s called “Alternative Roads to Recovery”, and along with us several other recovery groups/resources will participate, such as:

Online Recovery Communities
HAMS (Harm-reduction, Abstinence, and Moderation Support)
Intuition in Recovery
Intensive Outpatient Programs
Medication-assisted Treatment
Mentorship in Recovery
Mindfulness Based Recovery
Says Beverly (from the ARR website):
Alternative Roads To Recovery encourages men and women to find a recovery practice that works for them. Very often, that recovery practice is made up of many different systems and support. I’ll share my own journey with alternatives that had me celebrating 10 years of recovery this year with no relapses, EVER!

Sounds kinda nice, doesn’t it? If you want to check it out, please have a gander at this link here: Alternative Roads to Recovery.

And if you attend, I’d love to hear how it went (and even if you don’t, I love hearing from you anyway)!

🙂 Bobbi C.





Multiple Pathways Goes To Washington…

Moving Up

Well, alright, not Washington exactly, but to events influenced and inspired by Washington, which is to say…this summer’s political party conventions.

More specifically (and most importantly),, the organizers of these events, has invited Tom McHale, LifeRing meetings convenor in Petoskey, Michigan and major recovery advocate working tirelessly in that state to advance multiple pathways, to participate in Multiple Recovery Pathways for Addiction Solutions sharing the stage at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland later this month.

Per information Tom shared:

     Interest in Multiple Recovery Pathways is moving into the public arena and has been selected to be one of the topics at the Republican National Convention Caucus for Addiction Solutions.  Tom McHale, Peer Recovery Support Service Coordinator for the NMSAS Recovery Center in Gaylord, Michigan has been asked to provide information to the Caucus when they gather in July. 

     This invitation follows the work Mr. McHale and NMSAS Peer Recovery Coaches have been doing in northern Michigan over the past several years to nurture the development of  and spread the message of the availability of multiple recovery pathways for people seeking  to reduce or eliminate alcohol and/or drug use. The movement recognizes diverse needs of those seeking recovery and that the availability and support of multiple pathways leads not only to creating more opportunities for recovery but healthier communities. 

     An initiative currently underway in Alpena, Benzie and Manistee Counties called the Healthy Communities Campaign is designed to increase availability of multiple pathways in those communities, enhance community understanding of recovery and to create recovery supportive communities, and enhance the network of trained peer recovery coaches.  This initiative is funded by Northern Michigan Regional Entity.

Tom also says he’ll put in a plug for LifeRing if an opportunity presents itself. 😀

Multiple Recovery Pathways will also be represented at this year’s Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, PA at the end of this month.

We wish Tom and all the other participants in this months’ events all the best, and are looking forward to seeing their impact down the road.



On LifeRing’s 2016 Conference: The Opposite of Addiction Is Connection

Well, my dear blog friends, you’ve waited long enough. 

As you know, LifeRing held its annual conference earlier this month in beautiful San Diego this year, and I know you’ve been dying to hear aaaaallll about it…

Before we get started, though, my sense of propriety requires that I must warn you that I thought in order to share the immediacy of these events with the wider LifeRing world – since in addition to being the blogstress I’m now LifeRing’s “Facebook person” and everything – that it would be a good idea to try being one of these live Facebooker people and post stuff on our Facebook page as the conference went along.

I mean, how hard can it be, amiright? Yeah!

I even downloaded a nifty app that allows one to access more than one social media account at a time on their smart phones, which I’m happy to report works like a charm. (Honestly. I give it 5 stars!) I proceeded to take pictures, and then spent hours trying to upload them and post them to Facebook with limited degrees of success.

Therefore, you get to enjoy the sucky pics I took in all their bleary-eyed glory* (thanks again to Dan Carrigan for getting a coupla great shots). 

So, here it is – my take on things, for the second year running**. Thilling, idn’t it?


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Counting Down to the LifeRing Annual Conference in 5…4…3…

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Hey again, everyone!

As mentioned in my last post, I just wanted to remind those of you exclusive blog readers who might still be considering it that our Annual Conference starts this Friday, June 3rd, in San Diego, you’re still invited, and it’s not too late to register to attend! Check out the information here, and hope to see you there!

Going or not going, it’s all good! Either way, here’s a link to an insightful interview I think you might enjoy from The Fix with Tracey Helton Mitchell, one of our featured speakers this year, about her take on long term recovery and her book published in March, “The Big Fix: Hope After Heroin”. In addition to discussing her own history with addiction and recovery, part of which includes using LifeRing, she now spends a great deal of her time helping others in their journeys toward long term recovery, as well, and I look forward to hearing her talk.

I’ll be headed to the conference with my DH (Dear Husband) and will faithfully report back here about how it all went down later this month (I’m now large and in charge of the LifeRing Quarterly Newsletter, which you’ll also be seeing later this month, as well), but I’ll be posting some “live updates” during the conference on Saturday on our Facebook page too, so feel free to check that out if you get a chance.

See you on the flip side! 🙂




Coming Into the Home Stretch: A Holiday Primer

You Can Survive Christmas too (2)


Well friends, one week it’s Thanksgiving, the next week it’s Christmas, and suddenly another year has gone by, you know? And as joyful and as much fun as coming down the home stretch can be, even if you don’t celebrate it it can also be a painful, stressful bee-yatch, so take heart – LifeRing won’t abandon you now, either!

Here, then, is a reminder of all the ways we’ll be here for you throughout the remainder of the holiday season:

Our chat room will be open at all hours, and with ginormous thanks to him, meeting convenor Tim S. will be hosting the online Dual Recovery meeting on both Thursday the 24th (Christmas Eve) and the following Thursday the 31st (New Year’s Eve) at  (6 PM Pacific, 9 PM Eastern)

We have several other online support venues available 24/7/365, so if you’re not already a member of any of them, please feel free to check our e-mail groups here, our Ning Social Network Forum here, and our web forum here. Even if you don’t feel like actively participating, sometimes just reading through posts new and old helps you feel less alone or anxious.

Finally, sometimes you just need a few words of humor and wisdom to see you through, so here’s a list of 10 Funny and Heartwarming Quotes to Help You Survive the Holidays.

In the meantime, we wish you safe, healthy, peaceful and warm holidays, and whatever you do, DD/UNMW and you’ll be alright. 🙂