Its been nearly a month since we commenced the epic cycle/walk challenge from Weston super Mare to Manchester to meet up with the UK National Recovery Walk on 13 September 2014, all in aid of Help for Addiction Now. Everyone who walked was in recovery from addiction or identified as a family member affected by addiction. The blisters are drying up and the aches and pains are reducing, however the shared expression of recovery that the effort engendered lives on. For all those who took part, it was tough, and together we bonded as we groaned. As with most shared experiences we grow collectively and individually, we discover our limitations and our strengths; where previously I may have seen arrogance I now see extreme strength, where once i saw independence I now see stubbornness – yes, I now recognise I am incredibly stubborn!!
Its why group dynamics are so powerful, why mutual aid and fellowship meetings have such importance, as a group we become invincible, alone our strengths can go unrecognised. Strength in numbers, in shared experiences and identification with each other.
As we walked we were asked why by passers by, we talked about the charity and our aims to raise money to help others still suffering in active addiction and their families. We had some who identified and donated, telling us about their siblings, friends and parents. On the whole we were treated very favourably, some demonstrated a discrimination towards our cause that was diminished greatly when we asked about their perceptions and challenged their attitudes.
Only when we are prepared to stand up and be counted, to demonstrate our passions can we move forward. We all learned so much during the long long trek to Manchester, most of all we learned that it was so much fun before we’d even finished we’d committed to #cycletothewalk in 2015, WsM to Durham.
Bring it on!!