Below is a speech I wrote for the 2022 Voices of Hope Annual Gratitude Banquet. I presented a ‘Gratitude Award’ to Billy and Jason for generously donating their time and funds to help people in recovery from addiction. It’s part ode, part fangirling, part summary of their three year history.
Hi! I’m Jenny Hasted. I’m a lot of things, but tonight I’m a person in long term recovery from addiction, and somehow Vice President of the Board of Directors for Voices of Hope. I’m still not sure how that happened.
This is a nice place for our banquet tonight! I was here before, about ten years ago, but I think will actually remember it this time. That was another life.
I’m here to present an award to the Recovery (Sort of) Podcast. You know I’m a fan. You could call me a “long time listener”. I started listening in 2019, just before the pandemic.
At the 2020 Voices of Hope banquet, I caught up with Billy and complimented his relatively new show. They were about fifteen episodes deep at that point. Our conversation evolved into him inviting me to be a guest on the show to talk about my Buddhist recovery meeting. From there, my relationship with Recovery (Sort of) grew and I saw just how much work and sacrifice Billy and Jason make to produce the podcast.
At that time in 2020, they were recording every week. Every Week! So in addition to their full time jobs, recovery practices, family life, social life (do you guys even have a social life?) they were recording a show once a week.
Recovery (Sort of) has covered a wide range of topics…
All 12 steps
All 12 traditions
All 12 spiritual principles
Recovery practices like meditation, common expressions, sponsorship, service, conventions, journaling, boundaries
The ins-and-outs of meetings
They’ve hosted recovery authors, experts, and people just like you and me
They’ve talked about parenting issues, women’s issues, LGBTQ, People of Color
They’ve had guests share their experiences with bi-polar, depression, anxiety, chronic pain
Jason and Billy have talked about work, money, relationships, death, families, holidays, marriage, humor, nutrition
This show isn’t just helpful for people in recovery, it’s beneficial to all people!
Politics, news, religion, God
Stigma, relapse, anonymity, freedom, childhood mental health and trauma, discrimination, drug court, recovery housing
They have a show each for all the A’s:
AA, NA, GA, Al-Anon, Gam-Anon
All paths, Recovery Dharma, SMART, ACOA, Celebrate, Y12SR, (They had the founder of Y12SR on their show! She’s a celebrity …in recovery yoga circles) Recovery Cafe, holistic recovery
Tech addiction, sex & love addiction, codependency
They’ve debated controversial stuff like narcan and harm reduction, censorship, enabling, safe use sites
So many personal stories, vulnerable stories, honest snd true stories.
You think they’d have run out of things to talk about, but no!
158 episodes and never a reapeat topic.
How many of you have been on the show?
How many have listened??
How many love the show???
WE LOVE IT!
During the pandemic lockdown periods, they were a recovery life raft to me. It was like a convenient little meeting right on my iPhone. Even in quarantine, they still recorded each week and produced a show. One hour a week of insightful and intelligent recovery and mental health related topics, and they deliver the show the best way possible: with humor! Billy and Jason are so funny, but smart and just thoughtful too.
Listening to their show is like hanging out with good friends and then lucky me, I actually became their friend!
They told me they started the show because they liked having conversations with each other and thought “hey why don’t we record these and share with everybody! Who knows? Maybe we can even make some money off this.“
And they have! But they give all the money to Voices of Hope. There’s a brief humble request for donations during each show and all that money goes to Voices Of Hope specifically to help people in recovery. They don’t keep a dime! They don’t even take their guests out to lunch. (Which is actually a pretty good idea, don’t you think?)
Every Sunday morning, Recovery (Sort of) releases a new pod. You can listen on all the major platforms: Google, Apple, Spotify, iHeart, pretty much anywhere you get a podcast. PlayerFM (That’s the one in Norwegian. They have an audience in Norway!) They’re on Audible too.
Recovery (Sort of) is on YouTube as well, which is why I always dress a little nicer when I’m on the show. Gotta look good for the internet! They show up in their gym clothes and I look like I’m going for a job interview.
Recovery (Sort of) has their own website, with links to the podcast, videos, references from the show, blogs, they’re on Facebook, Instagram, (beware of Jason’s raunchy memes!) Twitter, Reddit, and now TikTok, … But for some reason they still haven’t been in our local paper the Cecil Whig. Hmm..
Recovery (Sort of) has listeners around the globe and regular interactions with folks in Europe, Asia, and across North America.
It’s an honor to call these two friends.
Billy is so smart. How does he process and remember all that information? He takes in all this news, politics, sociology, psychology, random facts about cars, public figures, sports, animals, and puts it all together to explain his version of the universe. And it’s an excellent one. I love his dry humor and delivery. He has such a true perspective on literally everything.
Jason, he doesn’t just think outside of the box, he thinks outside of this plane of existence. Behind his cynical exterior is unbounded compassion for all humanity. Like Billy, he pieces together information so brilliantly, and quickly, molding an intriguing conversation. Guests on the show never fail with Jason in the conversation, he has a skill for beautiful questions.
Jason and Billy are a handsome couple and this podcast is their beautiful baby. Their conversations are raw, honest and hilarious. They bring Cecil County recovery to the world and the world is listening to them.
Billy, Jason, Thank you for sacrificing most of your Sunday mornings for the last three years, and miscellaneous other days editing and researching for the show. (*Editing alone takes around four hours for each episode!)
You two say that you are doing for you, but it’s fantastic for all of us too! You are helping countless people in recovery around the world, but especially specific people starting their recovery journey right here in Cecil County with the funds that your show generates and then donates.
So with tremendous gratitude and appreciation, on behalf of Voices of Hope, please accept this award. And keep going my friends! I love you both!
- 54: Narcan and The Right To Breath (Sort Of)
- 59: Are You As Open-Minded As You Think You Are? (Sort Of)
- 53: What Is Relapse and What Can We Do About It? (Sort Of)
- 60: The State of Addiction Treatment – What We Need To Do Differently (Sort Of)
- 62: Is Your Ego In Check? (Sort Of)
- 56: Adverse Childhood Experiences – Knowing When to Hold Your ACEs and When to Fold ’em (Sort Of)