Tag Archives: Sober Living

Tag Archives: Sober Living


Components of a Continuing Care PlanWhen I was a patient at Cumberland Heights the idea of leaving the bubble to begin life in recovery was overwhelming. Luckily, I did not have to figure out how to live life on life’s terms alone. I had a counselor and case manager who collaborated on a Continuing Care Plan that would guide me toward resources which would help me develop skills to remain clean and sober one day at a time.

A Continuing Care Plan is developed and managed by a patient’s Case Manager. It’s comprised of several clinical recommendations by a patient’s treatment team and designed to support his/her recovery once s/he leaves campus.

Providing an alumnus with a firm foundation for his/her recovery is not only a recommendation; it’s essential. Look at it as a road map to sobriety.

A good Continuing Care Plan may encompass some of the following components:

  • Ongoing Treatment… such as Extended Care to work more deeply on co-occurring disorders or trauma while practicing recovery.
  • 12-Step Immersion… for those who would benefit from an intimate community doing an in-depth look at applying the 12-Steps of recovery.
  • 12-Step meetings… these help form the foundation of abstinence based addiction treatment. It’s an important step to find a home group and a sponsor. There are AA and NA meetings in most communities across the country. Find more information at www.aa.org or www.na.org.
  • Aftercare meetings… are an ongoing support network for alumni and their family members. The goal of Aftercare is to foster and encourage accountability, identify and arrest relapse symptoms and nurture long-term recovery. Aftercare is a FREE service provided for all former patients and family members to attend for life and is offered weekly at a several convenient Cumberland Heights locations.
  • Sober living… is recommended to an alumnus when it is felt they would benefit from additional structure following the residential program. For someone new in recovery sober living provides a sober support system while transitioning to independent living.
  • Outpatient Recovery Centers… can offer day or evening group therapy for the next step for an alumnus who began his/her recovery within an inpatient residential program. It affords a transition back to the home and work environment while still being supported in early recovery practices.
  • Meeting with a psychiatrist and/or therapist who is informed about addiction… this gives an alumnus a clinician to speak to in a confidential environment and a platform to work through issues such as trauma. Additionally, a psychiatrist will understand mental health and various therapy and pharmacology options for each condition.
  • Wellness checkups with a primary care physician… to ensure an alumnus doesn’t have an undiagnosed medical condition for which s/he needs treatment. Also, to maintain communication between the alumnus and his/her physician where medication may be of concern.
  • Alumni Activities… connect and have fun in recovery. As you continue your recovery process, Alumni services may be provided where you’ve completed treatment. Participation is encouraged in the wide range of activities and events offered in a safe and friendly recovery environment.

I cannot say enough about how critical a Continuing Care Plan is to a person’s overall outcome. Following the specific steps of a Continuing Care Plan ensures a greater degree of success in long-term recovery. With a road map in hand, each alumnus bravely begins recovery, taking the recommendations and each of the 12 steps, one at a time…one day at a time.


Components of a Continuing Care Plan | Blog Author Katrina CornwellKatrina Cornwell is a case manager at Cumberland Heights, a motivational speaker, blogger and three-time, first-place award winner in the annual Tennessee Press Association contest.

In her presentations, she speaks about her addiction to drugs and alcohol and how those habits led to a drunk driving accident which killed a man in October 2009.

By: Mary Beth McCauley, Staff Writer at University of Tennessee Daily Beacon Feb 9, 2017 — Updated Feb 13, 2017

People can change: Justin Furstenfeld’s (of Blue October) unique approach to his book tour

Knoxville (Tennessee) had the chance to get up close and personal with Justin Furstenfeld, the lead vocalist of alternative rock group Blue October, at the Square Room in Market Square this past Wednesday.

People can change: Justin Furstenfeld's unique approach to his book tour
People can change: Justin Furstenfeld’s (of Blue October) unique approach to his book tour and his story of recovery

Furstenfeld has been traveling to cities across the country to promote his book, “Crazy Making: The Words and Lyrics of Justin Furstenfeld to the Music of Blue October.” The “Open Book Tour” also gives Furstenfeld the opportunity to share stories regarding his struggle with addiction, depression and relationships along with playing an acoustic set in front of a small, intimate audience.

He kicked off the evening with “The Answer,” the title track of Blue October’s first album, and began to tell the audience about his own personal journey, starting with his teenage years. Furstenfeld led his first band called The Last Wish at only 15 years old, the age that he was officially diagnosed with depression. When the Last Wish split up, Furstenfeld went on to create Blue October.

Although Furstenfeld was raw and honest with the crowd, he told his stories with such charisma and humor that throughout the heartfelt details we were all laughing and smiling. He often reminded the crowd, “This is the open book tour. No holding back.” The auditorium felt like a room full of friends, a safe space to share their darkest secrets.

Furstenfeld played a few other songs from Blue October’s debut album, such as “Black Orchid” and “Breakfast After 10.” In these, the audience learned of his first love, Mamie, and how he forgot her birthday after two years of dating. His belated birthday song to her was “Calling You,” the song that scored Blue October a record deal.

He told the audience about his band’s first 15-passenger tour van — and their second one, and their third. He walked us down the path that began his drug addiction, partying on tour every night in hotel rooms and bars. During this same time, Furstenfeld met his first wife and had his first child, a baby girl named Blue, and that changed everything for him. The audience sat quietly absorbing every detail and feeling every emotion as he told his story.

He bravely shared the details of his divorce, the custody battle for his daughter and his spiral back into addiction. And, through all of these hardships, he continued to make music.

Furstenfeld pieced together all of the major events in his life one by one and sang us the songs that stemmed from those events, making them even more meaningful and emotional for the audience, many of which were already huge fans of Blue October.

Towards the end of the evening, Furstenfeld shared his redemption story. He went through a 75-day program at Cumberland Heights, a rehabilitation center in Nashville, and found his faith there. He has been sober for four years now. The audience cried, clapped and cheered for him, all rising to their feet in applause. Furstenfeld truly was an open book, and told his story bravely without shame, but with hope.

After the show, Furstenfeld took time to meet his fans, shaking hands and signing posters, all with a smile on his face. His merchandise sports the phrase “People Can Change,” the perfect summary of his journey thus far.

cumberland-heights-alumni-relations-first-quarter-events


March 4th – Room in the Inn Outreach

Details coming soon…

March 18th – Dinner and a Movie @ The Cookery

Details coming soon…

April 15th- Alumni Ropes Day

Details coming soon…

CUMBERLAND HEIGHTS TO OPEN
SECOND SOBER-LIVING HOME IN FOUR MONTHS

NASHVILLE, TENN. – Jan. 10, 2017 – Cumberland Heights will open a sober-living home for adult men this month, its second sober-living home opened in the last four months.

By adding sober living to residential, outpatient, and 12-step immersion programs, we now offer the complete support package so our patients can transition properly from treatment back to their lives.
By adding sober living to residential, outpatient, and 12-step immersion programs, we now offer the complete support package so our patients can transition properly from treatment back to their lives.

The Keep It Simple! House opens on January 16, will serve up to eight male clients at a time. Clients will stay a minimum of three months and must have completed a primary treatment program. Keep It Simple! joins Searchlight Sober Living for women opened in late October 2016.

 

Cumberland Heights sober living creates the right environment during the critical initial two-year period of recovery,” said Chief Executive Officer Jay Crosson. “By adding sober living to residential inpatient, outpatient, and 12-step immersion programs called Still Waters, we now offer the complete support package so our patients can transition properly from treatment back to their lives.”

 

Sober living allows residents to maintain contact with outpatient services and aftercare while integrating school, work and community responsibilities.

 

While other recovery residences exist, there has been a gap between the very high end providing many services resembling treatment and the very low end which is affordable but offers no services and often has high turnover,” said Executive Director for Community-Based Services Randal Lea. “Cumberland has secured safe housing at affordable rates in established neighborhoods.”

 

Cumberland Heights’ sober homes operate on a “social model” where residents share responsibility and accountability, which fosters greater independence from treatment or authority figures. The male residence is in Murfreesboro and the female residence is in Gallatin.

 

Partners include the Tennessee Alliance of Recovery Residences and National Alliance of Recovery Residences, both of which promote nationally recognized standards for safety and a quality recovery environment.

 


 

About Cumberland Heights

Cumberland Heights’ mission is to transform lives, giving hope and healing to those affected by alcohol or drug addiction. As a nonprofit organization, Cumberland Heights is committed to the approximately 2,500 men, women and adolescents it serves every year and the communities where its facilities are located. The organization has followed the teachings of the 12 Steps since its founding in 1966.


The Holidays

When I went into treatment on Monday, December 18th over thirty-five years ago, I thought my life was over. It was like the very thing that I’d been trying to outrun all of my life, finally came crashing in.

It being during the holidays, it seemed like the worst consequence that could have ever happened.   I had been working in a department store in Los Angeles and everything around me was festive and holiday-like. Everything was red and poinsettias. Unfortunately, I couldn’t feel a thing. Emotions were beyond me.

Now I am sitting in a hospital with a totaled car, a pending divorce and virtually no hope for a job. Christmas and New Years are rapidly approaching.

At first I was resistant and fought everything and everybody. I stayed angry and afraid.   I racked my brain trying to figure out what they wanted me to do. (Note. Not what I needed to do, but what they wanted me to do. Big difference.)   Christmas approached and like everything in my life, I went into denial. (“It’s not a big deal!”) It was a big deal.

During this period I finally came to the conclusion I was where I was supposed to be, and, even though I didn’t believe them, I would try to follow their instructions. But during a particularly contentious group session I threw a fit and ran out of the room. I ran to a window and reared back my fist to break the window. Instead I turned around ran back into the group room and began to shout, “you’re not gonna stop me from not stop drinking.” I fell to my knee  and began to cry like a baby.   It felt like a fifty pound weight had been taken off my back. For the first time in years, I did not feel pain or shame.   It was the spiritual experience like Bill W. spoke about in his personal story in the Big Book. The scales from my eyes fell away.  No hurt, no pain, no regrets. Perfect peace.

I remember looking out the surrounding picture windows in the group room that overlooked LA Harbor and the island of Catalina.   It was beautiful. I saw and felt for the first time since I was a child.

I didn’t even notice it was New Year’s Eve. Later that night I went into the darkened group room with the picture windows. I watched a spectacular fireworks display over the harbor.   I saw and felt the beauty of the moment. I was totally present and at peace in the world.   The next day my family visited and I saw them in a new light. I really felt their love.

The time spent in the treatment center changed my world.   It was the most wonderful gift I have ever been given.   Today I enjoy the holiday season with my wife and children and my friends and family.   I know that not one drink or drug will ever give me the peace that my Higher Power bestows on me.

Have a wonderful holiday.


Feel free to tell us about how your sobriety has changed your holiday experience and what you no longer take for granted during this season.


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