Photography © Luis Lazaro Tijerina

My Day Job

I’ve battled dead-end relationships,
Ideas of what I could and should be,
Rainy days and sleepless nights,
Crashing into a crazy career
Helping crazies like me.
Where one day I am challenged to a
Wii golf rematch or a karaoke sing off.
The next day I am visiting friends
In the loony bin
Like my family did for me.
And every day I feel lucky that my
Life’s calling is what my day job
Happens to be.


Recovery means waking up and looking forward to the day ahead.
Recovery is having something meaningful to do with your life.
Recovery is hugging somebody you love.
Recovery is smiling at a complete stranger.
Recovery is giving your co-workers compliments.
Recovery is feeling good about yourself.
Recovery is eating healthy, wholesome food.
Recovery is exercising.
Recovery is yoga.
Recovery is golf.
Recovery is basketball.
Recovery is truly enjoying the things you enjoy.
Recovery is friendship.
Recovery is feeling a part of a community.
Recovery is creativity.
Recovery is having a healthy body free from toxic chemicals.
Recovery is enjoying fresh air and nature.
Recovery is reading a powerful book.
Recovery is getting the sleep and rest you need.
Recovery is laughter.
Recovery is melting with a baby girl’s joyful eyes and playful spirit.

And maybe most importantly, recovery ALWAYS occurs in relationship: with friends, family, lovers, the environment, with spirit, with Nature.

Recovery takes effort, does not happen in a box, with a magic bullet, or a magic pill. Ultimately, recovery is a lifelong process of finding our true spiritual path.

Oryx Cohen is the Chief Operating Officer of the National Empowerment Center. Oryx is a board member of Empatiko and an Emotional CPR trainer. Oryx co-produced and is a subject in the award-winning social action documentary Healing Voices, which was released in April 2016. Oryx lives with his wife and two children in Massachusetts.

Luis Lázaro Tijerina was born in Salina, Kansas. Mr. Tijerina has a Master of Art degree in history, concentration being military history and diplomacy. He is a published author of military theory, short stories, essays and poetry. Mr. Tijerina resides in Vermont.