I AM A SURVIVOR:My thoughts and memories of the past 10 years of my recovery from addiction – Love, Wendy

Ten years ago to the day, today, I took my last dose of “self medication” consisting of 2 Tylenol with Codeine #60 and 8mg of Xanax.

I began my intense treatment for Substance Use Disorder (SUD) on April 3, 2013. What a decade long journey it has been.

I think of the list of challenges and adversity that presented itself over the past decade, and I am in awe of my strength, my discipline, and my devotion to wellness in my recovery through “An Integrative Approach To Wellness in Recovery” which I coined and created.

This decade brought with it highs and lows, and everything in between including bankruptcy in 2014, beginning a new career as a Recovery Specialist and Client/Family Advocate for those living with SUD and mental illness, as well as becoming certified and trained as a practitioner in Integrative Nutrition, Mental Health First Aid, Suicide Safety, becoming a Board Certified Peer Specialist, Spiritual Wellness, MAT treatment, Narcan, CPR, Trauma Informed Approach, to name a few.

I have written a book, Write Pray Recover :A Journey to Wellness through Spiritual Solutions and Self Care.

This interactive book/journal is based on my lived experience, as well as my field experience in the mental health/substance use disorder field, and my work in the field as an Integrative Nutrition Holistic Health Coach. This book gives the reader an opportunity to self reflect, to write about it, and to use this book as a tool for self discovery and exploration, and healing.

I am hoping to realize my greatest dream of going out on a book signing and speaking tour worldwide!

I was the Keynote speaker recently at the Chris Ashman Wellness & Recovery Conference, and I speak at various recovery events across NY state, and globally including LIVE radio broadcasts, and podcasts! In addition, I have a private practice where I serve others who are beginning recovery. I work as a part of their “treatment team” and bring my program, An Integrative Approach To Wellness in Recovery, to the solution. This is a program that is tailored to one’s specific needs and desires. It is a non linear program, and as we ebb and flow, the program continues to be modified. The client leads the team. Inherently, we all know what we need to heal. We ask for support and guidance as we explore and discover our authentic self, ongoing.

Sadly during my recovery, I lost my mother in 2020, who gave up on life, I suffered severe physical health challenges, broke up with the man I thought I’d spend the rest of my life with, and had to make a conscious choice to sever relationships that were contributing to my anxiety and overall well being in a negative way. I navigated it all without any mind altering substances, and instead, summoned every holistic healing tool and practitioner that I could find to guide me.

The relationships with my children and friends have become unbreakable and meaningful as my family and friends observed my metamorphosis one day at a time, and stood on the sidelines cheering me on.

My “integrative approach in recovery” has been testament to the fact that each of us can choose the pathway to our own recovery, and be successful when we remain diligent and disciplined to the components of said program. There are many pathways to recovery that co-exist in alignment with necessary medical supervision in the first year, at least, of one’s recovery.

On Tuesday, April 4, 2023, I will begin my 11th year of Wellness in Recovery from prescription drug addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders.

My son said to me today, “I can’t tell you enough how inspiring it is! If it wasn’t for you leading the way, I wouldn’t have made it! So proud!!
You must be super proud of yourself too! Look where you are now. Even with the pain you sometimes experience in life, you stood strong and never fell backwards. That’s amazing. Very inspiring.” And my daughter Liv said this morning, “That’s really good! I’m really proud of you!”

It is for my children and grandchildren that I continue along this exciting, albeit sometimes challenging journey. I want to lead the way in showing them by actions, not just by words, that when we actively engage our mind over the challenge, anything and everything is a possibility.

As for the saying, “When we know better, we do better,” Amen. And it is up to us to continue to learn and to evolve in order to make healthy choices and to do better for ourselves lifelong. This practice ripples out into our immediate environment as a positive mindset and approach, and offers new perspective to consider, and eventually, it ripples out into the world where we begin to see change.

I will end with this quote that I wrote in my recovery early on, and which appears in my book on page 3 and 4:

“I am a survivor. I am not my past defined by a disease that

temporarily altered my being. I am a warrior who now holds

the space for others to experience their authentic selves in the

present moment. This is a blessing and a gift. I am here as a vessel

to usher the boat away from the shore. The waves do not hold

me back as I have learned to navigate, and swim right into the

waves. I’ve learned to go with the flow, and to feel the sun lighting

my way on my journey. I live with great pride, and in peace, as

I continue to experience the ripples and waves in un-chartered

territory. I continue to evolve, poised for the next rush of waves,

with certainty of my strength, always grateful for new opportunities

to grow. I am a survivor.”

– Wendy Blanchard, M.S., INHC, NYCPS


The more I see, the more I see – Love, Wendy

I have observed a clear and persistent obstinence, defiance, and borderline delusion from one I loved. I think about the brilliant mind of this man and wonder what would encourage one that I held in the highest regard and loved so deeply to align themselves with pure evil, and then to emualate that evil and delusion.

I used to pray for this man that God would forgive his deceit and hurtful words and behaviors. I used to pray that he would awaken. I used to ask God to strengthen his resolve and guide him to align himself with love, and to embrace the God he claims to be a child of, and of whom he follows.

I cannot believe my eyes.

Yet, the more I see, the more I see. And, the more I learn about this man, the more I learn.

I understand why God would never bless a relationship with one so defiant, misguided and unwell.

“God helps those who ask for help, and who help themselves.”

God never approves of evil.




Open your mind to other perspectives – Love, Wendy

There are actually some people who will “wish” for your relapse and demise, so that they can say, “You see, it can’t be done.” (Wellness in Recovery).

They have never met me.

My self created program, “An Integrative Approach to Recovery” is suitable for everyone as it combines traditional methods with holistic methods and flexibility in choosing ones wellness tools. We all have mental health, and we all heal differently. We must respect each individual’s choices in healing.

My choice was to create my own program when I realized the traditional 12 step programs did not resonate with me. I began my own business and started helping those in recovery who wanted a new perspective and sustainable program in wellness.

Click here for your copy of my book, Write Pray Recover: A Journey To Wellness Through Spiritual Solutions and Self Care.




“Holding the space” – Love, Wendy

Giving someone space is an act of love and compassion. It displays trust and value of another. “Holding the space” for another allows them to “be” where they are, heal in whatever way and pace that is comfortable for them, and it reminds them that you are on the sidelines watching, cheering, and holding the space for them to arrive at their own destination in their own time.

“Holding the space” for oneself is just as important. To “know” that we have the support and the tools to love ourselves and to heal in the way(s) that resonate with us individually. Each day remind yourself that you are ALWAYS doing your best in every moment with the tools and knowledge that you have at this time.

Remind yourself that you are spiritually supported and guided. Remind yourself that you can always seek additional guidance and support from a trusted loved one, or even a professional. Remind yourself that your healing is connected to your experiences, and that you have the option to try additional means of healing to expand and enhance your experiences.

“Holding the space” for oneself or another is an act of unconditional love. And in the meantime, for ourselves, we live in the space of acceptance that we can only control our own space and self. In this space and action is our greatest self care.

Hold the space in a mindset of acceptance, being present, kindness and encouragement, and if needed, silence. We all heal differently. Remind yourself that there is NO time limit on healing.

“Hold a space for love and healing.”

And always be prepared to dance again in that space.

Love, Wendy


“When all hope is gone, have faith” – Love, Wendy

When your child is hurting, no matter how old they are and you can’t fix it for them, the heaviness of their burden seeps into a mother’s soul.

For me, when my precious child who is experiencing serious challenge and adversity tells me that, “it’s OK mom, I’m going to take good care of myself because you have shown me the way; you inspire me”, that is the moment that I look up, drop down to my knees, and say, “Thank you,” to the Divine Source, and for me that is God/Spirit, who has been guiding me on my path of wellness and self awareness in order to lead by healthy example for my children.

Everything that I do, say, and act upon is carefully thought out and considered in order to provide healthy choices for my children. And in my own times of adversity, I remind myself who is watching, and the lesson that I want them to learn.

When your child is hurting, no matter how old they are and you can’t fix it for them, we must continue to do the next healthy thing to lead by healthy example. We must show them that through our own adversity and challenges, we continue to practice wellness, and to stand strong in our spiritual beliefs and practices…most especially when it seems like all hope is gone.

As I always say, “When all hope is gone, have faith.”




Whisper’s from the Universe – Love, Wendy

When we allow chances to learn and to evolve pass us by because we are uncomfortable with change, or we are fearful of failure, we lose opportunities to grow our grit.

Whatever the outcome, whether success or failure, it is an opportunity to build resilience, to strengthen our inner resolve, and a chance to understand what we can do moving forward to achieve our desired outcome. It is the practice test of exploration and discovery.

An embraced opportunity may even introduce an option that we have never considered, and can change the trajectory of our journey. 

I believe in taking every opportunity that is presented. If it doesn’t resonate, I will not engage again. 

I believe that opportunities that we may not “see” on our own are the Universe’s whispers to “trust” the journey.

Love, Wendy


We live what we learn. UNLEARN it when it depletes your wellness – Love, Wendy

I experienced trauma as a young child at the hands of the adults who were supposed to love me. Trauma made me do things, and behave in ways that were just as toxic as the behavior that I was exposed to as a child and young adult.

We live what we learn.

UNLEARN it when it depletes your wellness.

When I was near death ten years ago from a near fatal overdose of prescription drugs which I used to numb out all of the trauma, it was the thought of my children that prompted me to ask for help to save my life. I wanted to live, but first I needed to clean up my addiction, work with a therapist, unlearn unhealthy behaviors, and learn a healthy, sustainable way to live that resonated with my soul. An “integrative approach” was what I connected to and through which I thrive today.

I have worked through much of the trauma, and have ten fluid years of successful recovery in wellness.

I have written a book, become a mental health educator/consultant, earned a certification in Spiritual Wellness, and Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, and I am a board certified Peer Specialist for the state of NY.

Although I endured so much abuse, neglect and trauma, in one moment of clarity, I decided to stop feeling sorry for myself and ceased being the victim.

I asked for help, I did the intense inner work, and I realize that this will be a lifelong journey, but man, I have come a long way in the past ten years.

Those that just continue to wallow in their trauma in order to play the victim, and make excuses not to go to work, not to DO the work, not to practice compassion and forgiveness, and who look for attention in a most unhealthy way are destined to live an unhealthy life with toxic people in their circle.

It is a choice. I am not responsible for the abuse and trauma that caused me to use drugs, but I am responsible to heal myself, body, mind and spirit.

When we mature, we realize that our parents had their own mental health/substance use issues, and they did the best with what they knew, albeit they did not have tools at all to provide a nurturing home, love and security. And, through my own healing work, I have learned empathy for my parents, and have forgiven them.

I am blessed.

I have surrounded myself with the best teachers in healing and wellness, spiritual mentors, and have made it a full time job to learn all that would enable me to become the woman I am today.

The more I learn, the more I learn, and I now teach others how to promote their own wellness, and come from a place of spiritually aligned behaviors.

I stand in my power. I will never again allow myself to engage in a toxic relationship where I give away my power.

A difficult journey, but I am living in wellness…one moment at a time.

Forgiveness negates the need for lifelong vengeance. It is for the ones who were the victims. Of course, forgiveness is a choice, and is a situational decision.

With respect for all those who endured abuse and neglect, I speak from experience.

My load is so much lighter. I wish that for you.




A Decade Of Wellness in Recovery – Love, Wendy

I have been in “Wellness Recovery” for a decade now, and I have learned so much in my new normal.

And, at the foundation of my recovery from prescription drug addiction and mental health disorders is my deep spiritual practice.

I have observed that I have the ability to successfully, with deep meaning, do the following with spiritual guidance and a loving support system:

-Engage in the most challenging and uncomfortable conversations.
-Take the road less traveled.
-Choose to go way out of my comfort zone and try the scary option rather than the safe option in order to allow myself to learn and to evolve.
-To have an ongoing dialogue about mental health and my personal journey even in my community where I live and work without apologizing for the disorders that nearly took my life, and in fact, use my lived experience and my work experience in the field to serve my community, locally and globally.

And I have observed that:

-I am brave.
-I have stared adversity in the eye, and kept going anyway.
-I have become empowered and have freed myself from the past.
-I have created a new, healthy lifestyle that has indeed been life changing.
-I have had thousands of opportunities, and embraced those opportunities to serve others.

These last 10 years in recovery through my self created Integrative Approach to Wellness in Recovery has taught me discipline, courage and self trust, and MOST importantly to “sit” and just “be” comfortable with feeling uncomfortable. It always works out because God is ever present. Each situation is teaching me faith, discipline and grit.

It has taught me how to feel safe and secure even when I am feeling lonely and afraid. To make the choices that will best serve me in wellness, albeit that some of these choices have forced me to work harder in my recovery to foster and build my resilience and grit, leaving behind people, places and situations that I believed were once in my best interest.

Lastly, I have learned that choosing to do the right thing, i.e., the healthiest thing for myself may require me to make choices that are unpopular with others, and that I am perfectly at peace with it all.

As I write in my book, Write Pray Recover:A Journey to Wellness through Spiritual Solutions and Self Care, “I will no longer go into “debt” energetically for anyone else at the expense of my own wellness. I practice self-care first. If something that I am being asked to do is going to jeopardize my wellness, or expend and deplete my energy, the answer is “no.” No regrets. No apologies. Those who are coming from a good and loving place support and respect my boundaries. If they do not support my boundaries, they are not meant to be aligned on my path.”

I am incredibly proud of my healing, and of all of my work. I am so humbled by the experiences that have shaped the woman who I have become, and whom I love and respect.

Love and blessings,



Welcome Home to Yourself – Love, Wendy

We need to take a proactive part in our healing journey. Self reflection and speaking our truth is the first step.

Part of our healing journey may be to accept that the love we once shared is no longer a part of our journey, that it will be irreplaceable, and yet, continuing to invite ourselves to experience happiness once again even if the journey now appears unlike what we had imagined.

It takes courage and grit to continue to move forward without the relationship/relationships that captured our heart. And, it is always our choice.

We might not have a choice as to how we are placed on a alternate path than where we were headed, but we have a choice as to how we respond. We can go kicking and screaming, or we can embrace the beauty of the new beginnings.

Speak your truth. Unpack the pain. Patiently process it all. Express your deepest disappointment. Journal. Talk to someone you trust. Practice whatever healthy self care practices nourishes your soul.

Repeat as often as needed.

If it resonates, sit in prayer/meditation. This is my greatest self soothing tool.

Mindfully, take another step forward.

Never place a time constraint on your healing. It is a lifelong process. And, we can experience joy and sadness simultaneously.

Welcome home to yourself.

Love and blessings,



How Great Thou Art – Love, Wendy

Watching as a man continues to “drink the Koolaid” and buys into outlandish theories of “fake people, news,” and sees his reality that which aligns with a “Q” perspective.

Once upon a time, I believed this man to be “the smartest man” I knew. I held onto his every word as “gospel.”

My “God” and his “Creator” would never collaborate. Mine is based in spirituality, faith and love.

I believe that his is based in fear and a concoction of brainwashing tactics.

So, live and let live, and offer gratitude for my God for saving me from the Koolaid I came so close to swallowing. Never ignore your intuition.

How Great Thou Art.

Love and blessings,