By the time the sun hits the valley floor in Glenwood Springs, clients at the Youth Recovery Center already have a good start on the day. We get up early, but the pay-off is a warm shower and a hearty breakfast. The first business of the day is school, which includes mindfulness, writing, working on individual education goals and Getting Things Done (a curriculum that teaches how to organize and prioritize the tasks of life). Mid-morning is time set aside for individual therapy sessions, medical appointments, aftercare meetings, massages and work on written therapeutic assignments.
Our program follows a rotation of weekly themes, so as the day unfolds, a client is guided to explore the theme as it relates to her. For example, during ‘Rational Thinking’ week, a client may be encouraged to identify how his thoughts about drugs increase cravings for them. We generally conduct two 1 hour therapy groups per day, one before and one after lunch. Groups are mostly educational, but they also provide clients with a chance to talk about their feelings, thoughts and beliefs about recovery.
After the second group, it’s time for a break. As new staff come on for the evening shift, clients chill in their rooms. Time for a nap, conversation with a roommate or reading a book checked out from the library. Then, it’s off to recreation. Most days, clients go out into the community or surrounding hills for hikes, a work out at the gym, bowling or a trip to the Clay Center for ceramics. Dinner is enjoyed up in the hospital cafeteria; which sounds bad, but the cafeteria here is so nice that it draws in customers off the street. After dinner, clients make short phone calls to friends and family, regroup for an evening activity such as AA or NA meetings. The day concludes with a relaxation exercise before bed.