So we reach the final month of the year and 8 months of alcohol abstinence for me. Now I am not a Christmas fan. In fact it would be safe to say I do not like it but as much as I would love to shut myself away from it all with two young children that is just not really possible. One thing I do historically associate the festive season with is alcohol and copious amounts of it. I mean how else do you get through it all if not in a drunken pickled stupor? This year is going to be a test of my resolve that’s for sure. I think I can honestly say that since 1986 this will have been the first year alcohol will have not passed my lips. 28 years! Now that’s scary!
It will mean though like with all things these last 8 months whatever happens I will need to deal with it as me. Not a numbed, false personality, deluded me but just me. Why does that seem to terrifying? Hang on – it actually might not be as terrifying as I think it possibly could be. My assumption is that is will be awful, a struggle, a turgid drawn out string of endless days with jack shit to do other than pickle myself in a drunken haze and eat my own body weight in lard but that could just be years of predictable cognitive behaviour and now that behaviour pattern has shifted considerably I might just find that I find enjoyment in other things. I might just have a Christmas epiphany like Scrooge and go running up and down the street crying, ‘ Merry Christmas one and all,’… Although that might be taking it too far. Maybe I am believing my own hype? Yes I am always bah humbug therefore I will be bah humbug. Sometimes you just need to make an effort to make a change. Maybe by doing it for someone else you find the joy in it? Sometimes I have been so wrapped up in my own Christmas woe that I forget my children have not had their festive cheer sullied yet. Oh give it time kids! See! Can’t stop the Christmas cynic in me.
I do think that I am realising that I am far stronger than I ever thought I could possibly be. Being clearer of head has helped me deal with life’s issues with more clarity. It has helped me to see what really matters. Who and what is important in my life. The positive influences I have on others and likewise them on me. That the love between my children and myself is a bond that nothing can break and our love makes me feel the most secure and loved in my life even when I am proverbially beating myself up about all thing things I wished I had done differently. I can see and hold onto the things I do well. The single best thing I can do in this life is ensure my children know that they are needed,respected and loved. They are all of those things to me. If they know and feel how much they are needed they will understand how important it is to give. If they know and feel they are respected they will have the capacity to respect others. If they know and feel unconditional love they will have an open heart ready to love.
Love and friendship should be joyful, rewarding, inspiring, comforting and life affirming. I am blessed that my life has an abundance of love and friendship but sometimes it can be difficult, painful and desperately disappointing. We learn from the good and bad in our lives but sometimes it’s hard to see the positive in the latter. Being sober allows me to see what are the kind of things I want and need in my life. Life is all too brief and what I choose to let into my life has a knock on effect to my children’s and in turn what I want them to learn about themselves . I can see clearer what is worth fighting for in my life but equally I can see what I need to let go of. Having the strength to say ‘ this is not a good thing in my life and I need to let it go’ is both empowering and healthy.
So maybe this December I will look back at both the good and bad of the year and give it the acknowledgement it deserves but in doing so be thankful for the wonderful positive people, achievements and events that I have been lucky enough to have fill my year but also to doff a cap to the difficult and negative ones but be thankful for possessing the fortitude to let them go.
Nighty night x
Ps 244 days