Lisa Wall, SEP, CTP, SRCD

she / her

I am recovering from:
Codependency, moral injury, trauma, workaholism, infant loss.

The identity-based group(s) I am a part of:
Differently-abled, chronic pain & auto-immune disorder, neurodivergent, woman occupying a plus size body.

My personal definition of recovery:
First of all, I want to share an incredibly brilliant and poetic definition of recovery shared by my dear friend and fellow recovery traveler, Allison, “A journey far from linear; an embraced way of living with healthy tools and boundaries, rather than living with heavy armor and the illusion of control.”

For me, recovery also means: A cyclical journey and rite of passage of re-discovering oneself; the reclamation and return of something that had been lost; a sacred art; rigorous honesty with self and others; to live with integrity a positive and creative life filled with endless possibilities; to experience the magnificence of one’s spirituality and the power of virtue in one’s humanity; to embrace fellowship and contribute to community; to come home to oneself.

What led me to SHE RECOVERS:
It truly was an “everything that has happened in my life has contributed to the arrival of this place in time” kind of experience. The long version is, ever since I was a teenager I wanted to support recovering individuals but little did I know I needed recovery for myself too. This calling brought me to work within the field of addiction treatment and behavioral health for over 16 years. I say my “reckless and unrelenting” desire to help others (untreated codependency) guided me to the field but my own journey of recovery (which was initiated through working in this realm) is what kept me here. I was so drawn to Dawn and Taryn’s philosophy of recovery and admired the movement they created together. I knew I wanted to be a part of such an inclusive and empowering community. I also deeply desired to redefine recovery – for myself and others – to include a myriad of life challenges including recovering from trauma and mental health issues.

The TLDR version is that eventually SHE RECOVERS had a need to expand the team and I left the familiar (addiction treatment) for this organization and haven’t looked back. I finally feel at home in my career and in my recovery.

Why I love being a part of this team and non-profit organization:
What is there not to love? I work alongside and serve some of the most creative, wise, innovative, courageous, and rad human beings I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. We aren’t just a team or a community – we are kindred spirits. I am inspired every single day by simply occupying the spaces SHE RECOVERS provides. I love that the organization is so collaborative and responsive. Our community identifies a need and we do whatever we can to make those dreams a reality. Everything we’ve built is a co-creation and I don’t think I’ve actually “worked” a day yet…it’s too rewarding to be considered work.

Those that know me best might describe me as:
Supportive, resilient, and creative.

How these qualities show up in my everyday life:
There is nothing I love more than seeing the women in my life do incredible things. My favorite thing to do is cheer on the people I care about and relentlessly (note: no longer recklessly) support their endeavors. I truly believe I am surrounded by some of the most brilliant human beings and I consider my love for amplifying their work a cherished hobby! My resilience shines through my capacity to cope with life stressors. I live with chronic and severe tinnitus as well as reactive arthritis. I listen to my body and find ways I can continue living my best life despite – and alongside – these disabilities. I am also a full time creative in that I can’t ever seem to shut my mind off which can be both a blessing and a burden! Living with ADHD means my brain works in pretty special ways and it makes me the creative-multi-tasking-visionary that I am – it also means I lose my keys and phone A LOT. My creative spirit loves to explore different forms of self-expression from painting to singing – sometimes simultaneously and all at once!

Something unique you may not already know about me:
I am an avid motorcycle enthusiast and have been the lead singer in some pretty rad bands.

Something I am most proud of:
I feel that this is “supposed” to be something that really created a big impact in the world but if I am being truly honest, I am most proud of winning a karaoke competition because I feel like there is nothing more vulnerable than singing karaoke completely sober.

Radical self-care look for me looks like:
Setting boundaries and sticking to them. Treating walks in nature as a non-negotiable act of daily living. Saying no to things that no longer serve me. Speaking my truth even if I may be unheard or misunderstood. Leaving former toxic work environments without any idea of what to do next. Asking the 5 year old version of me what she needs at any given moment. Prioritizing play. Going to therapy. Allowing myself to never finish doing chores in exchange for something that has captivated my attention.

What I wanted to be when I grew up:
An anesthesiologist. For the longest time when I was young I thought being an anesthesiologist meant you got paid by the hour to give people naps, like a nap faerie of sorts. That sounded very magical and incredibly kind. It was also the hardest word I knew and I was very impressed with myself anytime I could accurately say it out loud.

Something that is inspiring me right now:
Right at this particular moment? My local community. I live on a small and remote island of about 350 people. The welcoming and supportive nature of the folks who live here has created a sense of safety for me I never even knew I needed. The way they live big with so little has me trading in my previous “hustle culture” programming for the art of slow and intentional living. They have reminded me what it means to find magick in the mundane…which is essential to my patchwork of recovery.

The SHE RECOVERS Intention & Guiding Principle resonating the most with me right now is…
“We are all recovering from something.”

For me, it always comes back to this. It has taken many years for me to find my place in the recovery community, to feel a sense of belonging and to truly believe that my experience of recovery was valid. While I don’t deny that I hold certain privileges in my recovery, (I was an early exiter from substances, and simply chose to stop drinking and using drugs, so I never had to experience withdrawal or the debilitating shame, oppression, stigma, and struggle one must endure when living with a substance use disorder) I still felt ashamed that my pain wasn’t real and that my struggle was not “bad enough” to qualify for recovery. It wasn’t until I found SHE RECOVERS that I truly felt like I deserved recovery too.

My favorite SHE RECOVERS resource is…
I know everyone says this but it truly is so difficult to narrow down. Today, I am going to choose the #MentalHealthMonday monthly webinar series because, as a former treatment provider, it is the most comprehensive and inclusive recovery education series that I know exists. This series has over 100 hours of resources, tools, skills, research, and conversations that all contribute to the improvement of my recovery capital led by today’s leaders in women’s wellness and behavioral health – and it’s all FREE!

SRF Blogs I’ve authored:

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