Sobriety is the Best Gift
Okay, that’s kind of corny, right? Wrong! Sobriety really is the best gift! It’s the best gift you can give yourself. It’s the best gift you can give your family and loved ones. It’s the best gift you can give to coworkers. It’s even the best gift you can give to strangers. After all, they’re probably sick of dealing with a hungover and miserable woman!
All jokes aside, sobriety is a one-of-a-kind blessing. It’s the foundation upon which we can build the rest of our life. It’s a way to grow as women and give back to those that have helped us time and time again.
This last point, giving back, is huge. I’m going to tell you all about my first sober holiday experience. It should come as no surprise that giving back, being of service in all areas of my life, kept me sober during this time.
My First Sober Thanksgiving
I got sober in April 2008. I was living in a halfway house in Delray Beach, FL and my parents were a million miles away. Well, they were really only a thousand miles away, but it seemed like a million!
I skipped Thanksgiving that year. Even at around six months sober, I knew I wasn’t ready to deal with my entire family. I couldn’t wait to see my parents and brother, but aunts, uncles, and cousins? Thanks but no thanks!
So, my mom, dad, and brother came to Florida. We had Thanksgiving at a local restaurant and then walked along the beach. We talked about what we were thankful for. Of course, my sobriety was number one on everyone’s list!
That was my first sober Thanksgiving. It was pretty awesome and gave me some of the confidence I needed to tackle my first sober Christmas!
My First Sober Christmas
This time, I couldn’t stay in Florida. While I’d missed Christmas the previous year, thanks to being in treatment, this time my family wasn’t having it. They wanted to see me and I knew I needed to be there.
In preparation for my trip back home, I buckled down. I hit my knees more than ever. I finished my steps and started reaching out to newcomers. I got a sponsee and began to take her through the twelve-steps. I made sure to research meetings in New York and reached out to the local Intergroup office.
When it was time to fly up, I did. The next week was a whirlwind of seeing family members I hadn’t seen in years. Most of the time, seeing them was great! Sometimes, it wasn’t. I have uncles and cousins who love to drink and smoke weed. They didn’t do anything around me, but it was plain to see they were messed up.
What did I do? Did I join them in the backyard for a quick joint? Did I join them at the kitchen island for wine? Nope, I prayed for them! They may or may not be addicts and alcoholics. I don’t know and it’s not my place to know. It is my place to be of service to everyone, though.
So, I prayed and asked God how I could help those around me. I went to a meeting every morning. I raised my hand and shared at each meeting. I reached out to other alcoholics who were having a hard time during the holidays. In turn, God had my back. She kept me safe and protected. The thought of drinking never even crossed my mind!
And that, my friends, is one hell of a miracle!