There’s always a solution. To everything. If you are patient enough.
Finally the holidays are here. You can not wait to let your hair down, take your belt off and relax at home with your family and pets. Also realizing, this is the very moment you work so hard for. But as you nestle in your favorite chair and pj’s you here the question from the other side of the house.
“What time are we leaving for the party?”
Ahh, the joys of holiday gathering. All the characters on your Facebook in one place and in real time! Let’s get real. (FYI: This blog used to be called “Keeping it Real!”) Without looking at your Iphone, yell out the phone number’s of the people you talk to on a regular basis. Done already, well that’s the number of people that you should really only have on the Social Media giant! Seriously, I know your freshman year shop teacher keeps sending request to play candy crush! Awkward!
However, you’ve cashed all your “Sober Card’s” in throughout 2015. You know the one’s, the “I don’t know babe, there going to be drinking at your in-laws, probably better just stay home to be safe.” And of course it is just a mere coincidence that the National Championship game starts in 5 minutes.
So no way out. You have to go. And even if your really are nervous this time about seeing your family and friends on Christmas Eve or day because you know they can drink like normal people.
AND WE CAN”T. EVER.
So here are a few things I did, the past two holidays seasons, coming off 23 years of abuse and bringing me to my third sober Christmas.
1.My wife handles my drinks.
I do not exactly remember how we came up with this idea, however whenever my wife and I go to a social gathering she handles all my drinks. Meaning, nothing gets to my hand and to my mouth without her putting it there first. If we are at a family gathering she pours my drink. If we are at a place of business it’s sealed bottled water only. Especially with Christmas party’s in a packed house. I don’t want the wrong type of drink by accident. And, why take a chance.
2. Mentally Prepare.
I know I’m going to see family and friends laughing, smiling and having the best holiday time ever. And it’s going to bother the hell out of me. A lot. So I attend the function with the mindset of understanding that I can not drink. I have to remember what happens to me when I do drink. Which is: I don’t go home; I don’t go to work; I spend whatever little money I have and don’t have; I put my wife and kids though hell; Then I come home, 3 days later, and start all over. I don’t want that life anymore and I hope you do not either. So be mentally prepared.
3. Enjoy the moment with others and remember its not all about you.
I’ve literally have been practicing, “enjoying the moment” this past week. My plan is not living in the resentment, it’s about celebrating the holidays with family and friends. Stay focus and enjoy the hugs and arguments with your die hard Cowboy fan cousin who is in complete denial. And stay off your phone!
So, a few more really important things to do, if not THEE important…
Call your sponsor before and after. Go to a meeting before and after. Take a sober friend. Have an escape route if things get cloudy in your mind. Pray on the way to whoever it is you pray to. Take your sobriety chip and carry it your pocket. Come up with a few of your own and post them here!
I want to wish everyone an awesome Christmas! If you like my blog, please go to the website keepingitsober.org and sign up for the free newsletter on the right bottom footer. It will keep you up-to-date on my latest blog and podcast as well as quick survey’s to help me create better content for you!
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Keep it Sober my Friends!