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Do You Everest?

Updated: Jul 28, 2023

Guys..Gals..Today, I am excited. And I'll tell ya'll why. Yesterday, July 22nd, We had the first-ever 217 Recovery disc golf event in Traverse City at Hickory Hills. It got rained out a little early. Bummer right? What's he so excited about? Well, for me, it was exciting because it was a personal victory in more than one way. July 22nd just so happens to be two and a half years, to the day, that I decided to make recovery a priority in my life. And for those of you who know me, you'll know that recovering my physical health has been just as big of a mountain that I've been climbing as my sobriety has been.

Well, that sounds awesome Mitchell, but where's the disc golf play into this? Calm yourself..I'm getting there.

A lot of people are familiar with Hickory Hills in Traverse City, but some of you have no idea what I'm talking about. Hickory Hills is a BEAUTIFUL, forested mountain very close to the heart of Traverse City Michigan. It has hiking trails, a disc golf course known across the country, and in the's a ski mountain. Ok, ok, calling it a mountain is a bit dramatic.. But, it's a big ass hill. A few of them to be more precise.

To lead us into how I'm tying all my excitement together, the disc golf course at Hickory plays up one side of the hills(feels like a mountain when playing it), then down the other side, back up again, and just when you feel your energy reserves nearing depletion..You play back down the back side of the hills, completing the course. When the idea got brought up in the office I was excited to incorporate something I love to do, disc golf, into not only my work..but the recovery community as well. But I'll admit, even after spending all those walks with my own peer recovery coach(thank you, Jonathan!), and walking for exercise on my own.. Remembering how much of a hike Hickory was before gaining weight in active addiction(around 200lbs), I was staring at it now like an unsurpassable obstacle I was quickly approaching.

I was honestly terrified. There was a point, before getting into recovery, where I had given up hope and just accepted the fact that I was never going to do the things I loved out in nature, go to the beautiful places, and see the views at the mountaintops I was once capable of reaching. (Ok, "big hills", still feels like a mountain to me, lol.) But being faced with it now I was whelmed with feelings of inadequacy and fear of failing in front of my new friends and family I've gained while living life in recovery.

"I was honestly terrified. There was a point, before getting into recovery, where I had given up hope"

I had to really dig deep inside of myself, and you know what I found? Strength. Strength and determination to go to the places and do the things I was once capable of. I haven't lost all that weight, it never comes off as fast as it goes on... doing the things wasn't easy. But damn it, it felt so much greater than good to stand on that literal summit and feel the breeze from an elevation I hadn't crawled my way to in years. I had done it. And not just that, but others were pushing their boundaries right there beside me. By the end of the event, you could almost smell the victories being won between us all... OK, yeah, that was probably just because we were a bunch of rained-on sweaty dudes that had just conquered our own little Everest..regardless, it was amazing to be a part of.

I'm going to wrap things up here but I just wanted to share my excitement. July 22nd, 2023 marked three major victories for me. I climbed a mountain(big hill, whatever) I never thought I'd be able to again, I made it two and a half years into sobriety(something I never thought was possible), and I did both with a group of amazing, like-minded, friends that I get to consider as my brothers.

I want all of you that are reading this, and that were there on the mountain with me yesterday, to know that I have so much gratitude for all of you. Thank you so much for being you. I know you all have similar mountains you're climbing, physical, emotional, and spiritual. What I really want my readers to take away from this publication is that when the mountain looks too big, and you start thinking words like impossible or believing your limits aren't as high as the hills you're climbing.. please. Please, look into yourself and you'll be surprised that you have some strength left in there that just needs to be dusted off and put to use. If I can do it, you sure as hell can.

Let's have a great week everyone!


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