Recovering The SelfA Journal of Hope and Healing


Rules For Life – Recovery Party

by Ken La Salle

Welcome back to my continuing series of Rules For Life.

While it has not been my policy during this series to trademark or, in any way, brand my ideas or definitions, consider that most definitely my policy as of now – because this one’s a doozy! This is where I make my millions and establish a tradition soon to be adopted by thousands! It’s time to introduce to the world: The Recovery Party!journey in art

Now, before you say anything, I understand that some store like Wal-Mart is bound to run off with this idea, fill several aisles with Recovery Party merchandise semi-tastefully rebranded as Wal-Mart Recovery Central or Target’s You-Time Party, but you and I know who came up with this first. That’s me, baby!

But what is a Recovery Party? Good question.

I wish I had thought of this idea eight years ago, after my father passed away. I didn’t realize at the time that I was very much in need of a Recovery Party. Or last year, when I lost my agent and a publishing deal, I really could have used a Recovery Party! Now is not too late, though. And right now, a day after hiking 14 miles, it’s no wonder I created the Recovery Party – because I need a Recovery Party.

A Recovery Party is a kind of party you throw for yourself any time you need to recover from any of the stresses life throws at you – because, far too often, we expect so much of ourselves that we won’t even give ourselves a chance to recover. But, sometimes, that’s what your body needs. It’s a rule for life we should all recognize: that after you’ve endured some especially difficult stress, you need a break. You need to take a moment and breathe.

And that’s what I’m doing after yesterday’s hike. I put my feet up. I spent the day in my pajamas. My beautiful wife, Vicky, even made me pancakes! (This was unexpectedly wonderful and, to be honest, made my Recovery Party an absolute winner.) Granted, some might consider going to work right after indulging in pancakes, to write this article instead of lounging on the sofa, absolute sacrilege. And I’d ordinarily agree. But I had to share this.

A Recovery Party is anything you want it to be, anything that will restore your body, ease your mind, and just generally make you feel happy, warm, loved – whatever you need. Because life is filled with pitfalls but never enough parties. And why is that? Why do so many of us expect the world to be harsh but ignore that deciding element – that party – that will make it easier to endure? In my own case, I know it’s because I expect more from myself. I have had to learn, through the tiring and difficult (and sometimes trial-and-error) process known as “thinking,” that in order for me to achieve more I also have to be willing to be generous with myself as well.

So, get out there and throw your own Recovery Party, even if it is inside, in bed, under the covers. Buy yourself some flowers or, better yet, grow yourself some. Spend far too much time laughing with an old friend on the phone. For that matter, invite your friends to party with you! Hug a puppy until long after it has lost its patience with you. Drink an ice-cold milkshake. Do that thing that you’ve been depriving yourself of if that’s what you need to recover.

And then, stand up again, face the new day, and smile in the knowledge that you are ready once again to face the foils and pitfalls of everyday life.

About the Author

Author and Playwright, Ken La Salle grew up in Santa Ana, California and has remained in the surrounding area his entire life. He was raised with strong, blue-collar roots, which have given him a progressive and environmentalist view. As a result, you’ll find many of his stories touching those areas both geographically and philosophically. His plays have been seen in theaters across the country and you can find a growing number of books available online. Find out more about Ken on his website at

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