The Holidays and Sobriety

Fall is in the air!  The warm days of summer are leaving us and the holidays are upon us.  The holidays bring us together with friends and family and can be a joyous time. For people early in addiction recovery, the holidays can be a very stressful and difficult time.  There are parties and dinners and an abundance of expectations.  If you are new to recovery, sometimes it feels like you are on wobbly feet!  Just take a good deep breath and trust in your direction!  Sobriety allows us to enjoy the blessings of the season and to see things we could not while in our drug or alcohol addictions. It is helpful to have a plan.  My encouragement is to take care of yourself first.  Surround yourself with people who are sober and have their own and your well-being at heart. If you must go to parties where there is alcohol, have a plan.  When someone offers you a drink, say “sure, I would like a coke or water with lime.”  It helps to have something in your hands. If someone pushes the issue about alcohol, just say “No thanks, maybe later.” Have a talk with a trusted friend, or your sponsor before you go to get yourself prepared.  If it gets too uncomfortable, leave.  There are AA meetings all over town day and night where you can find fellowship and support. The coolness in the air and the falling of leaves teaches us about letting old things go.  Winter teaches us about quietness and about regeneration.   Your drug or alcohol addiction recovery teaches the same principles.   As the New Year begins, take some time to focus on the blessings of your life.  What needs to be let go of, let go.  The past serves only to teach us.  Allow new beginnings to fill your heart and soul. Blessings to you and yours! Rhonda McBride, PhD, LCDC

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