How To Pick A Sponsor

Sponsors and Sober Living Homes in Arizona

Since I have been a sponsor while living in a sober living home in Scottsdale, AZ I have been able to work with many different women of different ages and different backgrounds. What I have found is that it is not so much about the differences I have found in my sponsors, but the similarities in the feelings they felt throughout their journey in recovery. When I first got clean my main concern was whether I related to my sponsor or felt inspired by her story, but later I realized that the sponsor is just the person who guides you through the steps and all the real work is done on your behalf. What my first sponsor always told me was if you’re willing to put the same amount of effort into your recovery as you did into what got you into recovery in the first place then you’ll have no problem staying clean at all.

This has rung true throughout my recovery. I had to not just attend meetings and meet people in the program, but I had to become an active member of the fellowship I was in and really be of service within it as well as take the suggestions of my sponsors. So when my sponsor told me to stay in a sober living home in Arizona, I stayed. When she told me to pick up a service commitment, I did that also. I even began taking meetings into rehabilitation centers and really got to see people right at the point where they are the most willing to pick up a sponsor. When I became a sponsor myself at first I was constantly feeling like I had to make sure these people stayed sober and if they didn’t then I was a bad sponsor, but later I realized that I cannot dwell on helping people keep their sobriety when helping them is more about keeping my own.

So pick up a sponsor and if you’re not sure how to pick up a temporary sponsor and start the step work and as they say in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, “you may have come here to scoff, but you may remain to pray.”

The blog post was written by Dani

Men Stick With Men, Women Stick with Women.

Sober Living For Men and Woman

Living in an all-female sober living in Scottsdale has allowed me to not only grow in my recovery but also in my relationships with others. When I first entered the all-female sober living in Arizona I was unable to hold healthy relationships with men or women. You see I feared women and in my spiritually sick mind believes that all women either hated me or wanted something I had. It was through recovery that I was able to acknowledge that women were at the end of the day the people who would ultimately be able to keep me the most accountable. The reason this was a fact was that men were much easier to manipulate into my own self-seeking motives than another woman in recovery. This came as quite a shock at first.

I remember when my sponsor first told me I couldn’t be around men in recovery anymore and needed to reach out to women. At that time I only wanted to be around other sick women, but you know they do say ‘two sickies don’t make a wellie’. The sick women cosigned all my nonsense and allowed me to do all the things I shouldn’t have been doing. At the time this included me gossiping, still telling little “white lies” and doing the bare minimum to get by. Then my sponsor forced me to go to an all-women retreat in Prescott. I had every excuse not to go, but every excuse was countered by a legitimate reason why it was indeed possible. So not only did I go, but that was the weekend that I learned that women were my saving grace in recovery. If it had not been for the woman who was my spiritual guide at that time and forcing me to go I may not be alive today and that makes me so grateful for today.

Written by Dani Maldonado

Guiding You Home

Sober Living Homes in Phoenix and Tucson

When it comes to recovery there are so many stages when one gets to the point where they want their life to change but having a solid sober living house is one of the biggest keys. At Camelback Recovery we are committed to your recovery process and want to support you by providing excellent transitional living homes in Phoenix and Tucson. We have a variety of sober living homes in Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Tucson.

At Camelback Recovery, we’ve created the Camelback Recovery Integration Process. The Camelback Recovery Integration Process consists of Five Pillars. The Five Pillars are ACCOUNTABILITY, SUPPORT, STRUCTURE, COMMUNITY, and PURPOSE. Those are the five main pillars of our program and that’s what makes us different and what makes our program work.

What does that look like?

  • On-site/live-in house managers to provide support and accountability
  • Technology-Assisted Care
    • Full access to the Camelback Accountability and Support App (C.A.S.A.)
    • GPS tracking
    • Meeting check-ins
    • Personal goal setting/accountability
    • Activity check-off/tracking
    • Recovery resources and meeting lists
    • Daily email reports to support network
    • Accountability and support maintained throughout the day with the house manager
  • Healthy groceries for all meals and snacks
  • Gourmet family-style dinners prepared 5 nights per week (community dinners)
  • Gym membership
  • Professionally decorated homes, which helps to create environments that are conducive to recovery
  • Random drug testing two times per week
  • Random breathalyzer two times per week
  • Comfortable pillow-top mattresses
  • Daily check-ins
  • Weekly house meetings
  • 12-step based
  • Computer and printer for resident use
  • Internet/WiFi
  • Live TV
  • If the client is attending IOP or PHP, weekly resident notes can be sent to the treatment team
  • Additional support services easily available
    • Recovery Coaching
    • Sober Transport
    • Sober Companion
    • Case Management

Each recovery home location maintains a professionally designed setting equipped with warm décor and amenities to make any guest feel comfortable without compromising privacy or personal space. With sober living for women & men, we make it a priority to provide both equal and abundant opportunities to recover for the entire community of recovering individuals. This is why each home is conveniently located in close proximity to numerous recovery centers, educational facilities, fitness clubs, fine dining, and more. To learn more about our sober living homes for men and women, CLICK HERE!


Camelback Recovery provides sober living homes in Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Tucson. We provide recovery coaching in a structured and supportive environment that promotes long term transformational changes in our clients by focusing on 12-Step fundamentals, human connection, and accountability.

Sober Living Homes in Tucson, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona Sober Living Houses

When it comes to your recovery there are many choices of sober living houses in Arizona but did you know Camelback Recovery has Sober Living houses in Tucson? According to Wikipedia, “Tuscon is a city in and the county seat of Pima County in the Southwest United States and is home to the University of Arizona. The 2010 United States Census put the population at 520,116, while the 2015 estimated population of the entire Tucson metropolitan statistical area (MSA) was 980,263. The Tucson MSA forms part of the larger Tucson-Nogales combined statistical area (CSA), with a total population of 1,010,025 as of the 2010 Census. Tucson is the second most-populated city in Arizona behind Phoenix, both of which anchor the Arizona Sun Corridor. The city is 108 miles (174 km) southeast of Phoenix and 60 mi (97 km) north of the U.S.–Mexico border. Tucson is the 33rd largest city and the 58th largest metropolitan area in the United States (2014).

Our Ocotillo Ranch in Tucson, Arizona by provides an upscale, beautifully designed sober living house for women in Tucson, AZ. With state-of-the-art home features, this recovery home keeps guests comfortable and free from environmental triggers, helping them build new habits that support their clean lifestyle.

At Camelback Recovery, we’ve created a recovery integration process to increase the chances of long-term sobriety. This program has five pillars:

  • Accountability
  • Support
  • Structure
  • Community
  • Purpose

For at least three months, the residents follow a daily schedule tailored according to these pillars, until they’re capable of making healthy choices for themselves, by themselves. To learn more about this upscale transitional housing in Tucson AZ, CLICK HERE!

Camelback Recovery is a community committed to promoting and supporting sober living in Arizona. Our sober living home in Phoenix provides a structured environment that encourages behavioral and emotional control to empower individuals recovering from drug or alcohol abuse. We do this by building a foundation for sobriety and providing support and guidance along the way. For a full listing of our sober living homes in Phoenix and Scottsdale as well, CLICK HERE!
About Camelback Recovery
Camelback Recovery provides sober living homes in Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Tucson. We provide recovery coaching in a structured and supportive environment that promotes long term transformational changes in our clients by focusing on 12-Step fundamentals, human connection, and accountability.

Celebrity Sobriety

Throughout the entire time that I’ve been sober, I’ve heard a lot of stories about people getting sober. Although some of the most intriguing stories have always been of famous people. You hear a lot about celebrities who have struggled with addiction and lost their battles like Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse, and Marilyn Monroe. Their tragic ends leave the world in complete shock and transcend through time. What you don’t often hear though is the story of perseverance and strength and sobriety from a celebrity standpoint. This week I wanted to share that those stories do exist.

Some of my favorite celebrities are actually in recovery! These include Eminem, Demi Lovato, Elton John and, none other than Iron Man himself, Robert Downey Jr. Their stories are riveting and truly inspirational but this week I wanted to focus on one celebrity story in recovery in particular. A former professional skateboarder, New York top 10 selling author, and actor Brandon Novak.

The reason why I want to focus on Brandon Novak’s story is that I think it is a perfect example of how no matter what the reward there is, that if alcoholism or drug addiction is left untreated, nothing will stop it. Brandon Novak was going to be the youngest professional skateboarder to tour with Tony Hawk. At just 14 years old he had shown such skill that he was handpicked to travel the United States and the world to showcase his abilities. Unfortunately at that time, Brandon was unable to stay sober so he was kicked off tour. A young Brandon chose drugs and alcohol over becoming the youngest professional skateboarder to tour the US with Tony Hawk. That is absolute powerlessness at its best; I guess I should say at its worst.

He went on to do thirteen different inpatient programs before staying sober. No matter what was on the line or what would stand before him he always managed to get loaded again. What I find absolutely fascinating about Brandon is that he describes his story in a way that is so relatable to other drug addicts and alcoholics. He talks about how because he had all these things that would normally equal success it made him feel like even though he was a drug addict that he was already recovered. I feel like a lot of us in recovery come into the rooms with this inflated ego that we are different than other addicts and alcoholics and that is what keeps us from relating to one another and Brandon really shows that in his story.

Brandon has shared that an old man that approached him in the first rehab that he ever went to told him not to turn another year older in a rehabilitation center and how he wished he had listened to him. He ended up not getting sober until he was 33 years old so he had been in and out of treatment centers and attempted to stay sober several times before then. Which brings me to another aspect of Brandon‘s story that really stands out and is relatable. This is the fact that he wanted to get sober and really meant it when he said it but still could not overcome his addiction. More often than not alcoholics and drug addicts say that we are going to get on the wagon and keep this sobriety and then we fail to do so because alcohol and drugs have such a stronghold over us. He talks about how it didn’t matter how badly he wanted to be sober if a drug or alcohol told him that he had to jump he was going to ask how high and that is so incredibly raw and honest. In Brandon‘s life, it seemed as though he would’ve done anything to get money for his next fix. He even went as far as to steal books from his own book release in Time Square and going to go sell them in Baltimore. His own recovery based book release. So essentially he stole from himself to be able to get money when his family and his managers knew that he was not going to be able to handle money at that time. That just shows what lengths we will go to in order to feed our addictions.

He went home after that and his girlfriend had left him. He was alone, no clothes, no furniture, and nothing that seemed comparable to the life he had once lived. He has stated that he curled up in a ball on the floor of that house and he cried not because he had lost everything but he had given it away through his actions. To Brandon that house represented him in the depths of his addictions, hollow sort to speak. An empty shell of the man he once was.

Around this time is when there were looting and crime in Baltimore due to a police shooting and fatality. Brandon’s mom was scared living so close to it all because people were lighting police cars on fire and it was becoming super intense. She had asked him to come to take care of her. So he went to do it only to be locked in a room most of the time and to come out once a day to go pick up drugs from him a dealer. Nothing seemed too extreme at this point. Not even people calling his mom to say they had him and asking for ransom money. It was all normalized like most of our alcoholic lives become.

These extremes didn’t stop Brandon just yet. There was a lot that wouldn’t make his quit using actually. Not being in a coma for 7 days or even sitting in the snow with only a t-shirt. The end started with him getting an offer from his best friend Bam Margera to go on a tour for MTV’s Jackass. They were to do 29 events in 30 days in Australia! The thing was that Brandon knew from previously being in Australia that finding his drug of choice, heroin, was nearly impossible. So naturally, he had to bring enough along with him to potentially keep him from withdrawing. He headed to his friend Bam’s house and accidentally dropped his drugs on the floor. His friend kicked him out of his house. He wouldn’t be touring with his friends anymore. At this point, he was so far into his addiction that he was actually happy to be headed back to his mom’s house where his intervention waited. His mom drew a boundary watching her son deteriorate before her eyes. She would no longer let him live with her. He was served with a restraining order and for the first time in all the times he’d hit “rock bottom” it came to him.

Desperate, alone and broke Brandon had no more options left to feed his addiction. In that desperation, he met someone online who offered him a paid trip to Florida. All he required was his drugs and when he was promised that he was off. He was to catch a red-eye to Florida that night at 11:30 pm from Baltimore. The thing was that Brandon had to meet his probation officer at 8:00 am in Philadelphia to provide a clean urinalysis. All the meanwhile he’s still high. This just shows how delusional and insane we truly become at the end of our addiction, but that is the amount of insanity sometimes required to breed willingness in a person’s heart.

He didn’t make it to his probation officers to provide a clean urinalysis. Instead, he was robbed in Florida of the suit he wore for his probation officer visit. He went to the airport to head back to Philadelphia and TSA told him he wouldn’t be able to fly for 72 hours because he was inebriated. So he called his old sponsor and that man had him take a train and stayed with people who took care of him and took him into the rehab he had been two 4 times in the past. That just shows how we as people in recovery will show up at times when no one else will because it’s what keeps us sober as well. Brandon went into his final rehab with scarves, deodorant and cigarette butts he dug out of the trash. He wore donated women’s clothes and shoes that didn’t fit him and he was humbled and desperate for the first time.

He had arrived. Brandon, this celebrity, had been broken enough to come to terms with the fact that Brandon couldn’t be his own sponsor, he couldn’t only attend “Brandon Anonymous”, he couldn’t bypass the work this time… he had an awakening. He came to that realization we all have to come to terms with that we will never be able to drink or use drugs as a normal person. He finally grasped that he had to give it up for good to give himself a fighting chance at life. He did the work for the first time and that meant putting pen to paper and working a full 12-step program. He’s been sober since March of 2015 and even strayed working in recovery in 2016. He’s a true inspiration of how the program of recovery works for those who are willing to work for it and a reminder to us all that it doesn’t matter who you are or what you’ve done, addiction doesn’t discriminate and the solution is simple if you let it be.

(Novak, Brandon. “Addiction: Tomorrow is Going to be Better”).

About Camelback Recovery

Camelback Recovery provides sober living and transitional housing in Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Tucson, AZ. We provide recovery coaching in a structured and supportive environment that promotes long term transformational changes in our clients by focusing on 12-Step fundamentals, human connection, and accountability.

Written By Dani Maldonado

Blessed, Not Stressed

Sober Living Houses in Arizona

Staying sober can be one of the most stressful things you do in early recovery. With so much stress it’s only natural to need places where you could unwind. When I first got into sober living it was really hard for me to stop my brain from racing with ideas or things that I had to do or accomplish. As I got through my steps I became much more aware of my feelings and began to avoid things that overstressed me. Although avoiding places and things that brought stress into my mind was helpful it did not solve the overall problem. At that point, I turn to my spiritual advisor, my sponsor, for some much-needed advice. My sponsor had me pray on my knees every morning and set aside 30 minutes to an hour to meditate. Meditation is still one of the few things that can ground me in almost any stressful situation when I’m unable to leave the home.

There are other great places where you can take in the scenery and really let any negative thoughts go. What I like to do nowadays is go on a hike and look over the city that I’m in. Taking in a beautiful view and also realizing how huge everything really is in comparison to you or whatever problem you might be facing sometimes gives me a good perspective on my anxiety. Exercising also releases endorphins and can be a really good pick me up when everything else seems to be going wrong. Whether your kickboxing and literally taking it out on a punching bag or in a yoga class where you breathe out the stress from your body exercise in any form is a great way to relieve stress. I also find that churches or a synagogue sometimes bring a feeling of peace to me (even if I’m not necessarily religious). There is also something quite tranquil about looking into an aquarium and watching is the fish seamlessly float by so I would highly recommend visiting an aquarium or perhaps the museum and taking in something spectacular and recognizing how it makes you feel. Whatever you choose or wherever you go just know that whatever life throws at you… ‘this too shall pass’.

About Camelback Recovery

Camelback Recovery provides sober living homes and recovery coaching in a structured and supportive environment that promotes long term transformational changes in our clients by focusing on 12-Step fundamentals, human connection, and accountability. We have Sober Living Houses in Tucson AZ, Sober Living Housing Tucson, Transitional Housing Tucson AZ, Sober Living Houses Scottsdale, Scottsdale Sober Living, and sober living house in Phoenix. Contact us today to learn more.


Written By Dani Maldonado