The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is what’s called a “green-light” day. A lot of people just go right ahead and start drinking from the moment they wake up and keep on going all day long. This used to be something that I would do too. When I was drinking, there weren’t days when I made a point of drinking; I’d just go ahead and drink for the hell of it. But the holidays were the worst because being with family and friends just freaked me out for some reason. I still feel this way but it’s gotten easier to be in social situations and not drink. Yesterday I successfully stayed sober! And what’s very rewarding is that I feel pretty good today.
The holidays are rough. Even if you aren’t a recovering addict or alcoholic. In my experience, the holidays tend to bring out the worst in people. God only knows why but it’s something that I’m very sensitive to. To avoid the madness of the holidays in the past I’d just drink my way through them. The hardest part now that I’m in recovery is trying to figure out how to deal with the malingering general unpleasantness. This shit makes me anxious. The thing that’s been working for me this year is my new-found willingness to do whatever it takes to not fuck up.
Right now, I’m working in the office. Most people think that this is a bad move and anti-social but for me it’s been a very healthy choice. If I didn’t have work today, I would have slept all day. I know that if I wasn’t working today I’d be ruminating on all sorts of invalid negative thoughts. That’s just the way it is. In the past when I’ve tried to white knuckle the holidays I’ve failed miserably. If I manage to stay sober during the holidays, I usually still end up feeling horribly depressed and I don’t feel proud of myself or good about anything. Right now I’m battling with the feeling of self-doubt; I wonder all the time if I’m actually doing better because it’s hard to feel like I am getting better in any way at all. When I reflect on how I used to deal with the holidays though, I do feel a little bit better. It’s definitely nice not to be horribly depressed and hung over this morning!
I hope that everybody is having a happy Thanksgiving and staying sober! This is the time of year when recovery gets tough. For me, my solution this year is to be tougher than all of these things holding me back. EMBRACE THE SUCK. Just win, baby!
As long as you’re sober, do whatever the fuck you want. Don’t let anybody make you feel guilty. If you’re like me and it takes going to the office on holidays to stay sober then that’s what it takes. It’s as simple as that. And it’s only fucked up if it doesn’t work. Congratulations to the recovery community at large for just hanging in there!