On September 6th, the Lancaster Barnstormers hosted Recovery Day to help reduce the stigma associated with addiction and to celebrate those in recovery. Part of the special day included a pre-game recovery walk. Former baseball superstar in recovery Dwight “Doc” Gooden, pictured above, also made an appearance.
Here are Recovery Day thoughts from Scott Theurer, member of the Lancaster County Recovery Alliance (LCRA):
“I’m a person in recovery, a father and a husband blessed with a very loving family. I feel called to serve the recovering community not because I know all the answers, but because together we can collectively understand and deal with the questions. Watching others like me stand up gave me the courage to do so as well. If I can show the courage to stand against addiction, maybe others will as well, and others after them.
“The 2015 Lancaster County Recovery Day was an event filled with empowerment, pride, hope, and love. Excitement was really in the air as everyone staged for the walk. After it began, I turned around, and walkers in white tee shirts stretched from Prince Street to F&M College holding signs all in support of the hope in recovery.
“We were there to show the other side of addiction. To show that health can come out of horror, that light does trump darkness, and that human spirit really is resilient and strong. People in their cars stopped to ask what was going on and to take pictures, but most of all walkers got to feel what it felt like to be empowered, to feel the weight lifted, and maybe for the first time feel like a healthy life was actually obtainable. I really think they would have walked loops around the whole city, given a chance.
“It was also a day to spend with family. Thanks to the Lancaster Barnstormers, poignant and impactful time was spent together in fellowship. It was an awesome experience to watch everyone in the picnic area really enjoying their families and friends, some of them for the first time as sober individuals. I saw true, heartfelt smiles and love. It was impossible not to feel the positive energy. It matched the beautiful day. I personally found Dwight “Doc” Gooden (our guest) to be gracious, humble, and extremely giving of his time. He was engaging and was willing to listen and have a conversation with you.
“The fellowship among all of the event participants was really striking. Everyone got along—all different cultures and gender identities. We were all just brothers and sisters that day. Maybe I didn’t quite understand the Spanish from the man next to me—but I understood his smile! I saw a lot of people just quietly taking it all in, while others went from group to group, talking and laughing. Above all, I heard people ask about Recovery Day next year, and I went home thinking about how it could become even better!”
For more information about the LCRA’s work to grow a community supportive of recovery, visit its Facebook Page. Volunteers welcome!