Notices

How_do_"we"_in_recovery_celebrate?

Old 03-18-2010, 06:31 AM
  # 1 (permalink)  
i've done my almost
Thread Starter
 
Kjell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 1,934
How_do_"we"_in_recovery_celebrate?

So yesterday got me thinking (I know, I know )

How do folks in recovery "celebrate"? How do we celebrate holidays? Graduations? Promotions? Achievements? Engagements? Marriage? Divorce? You get the point.

Yes yes, I know I'll get the "I drank all the time, I didn't need an excuse/holiday to drink or drug". I did too and I totally get that.

...but that's not going to stop the holidays from coming and hopefully we are all able to achieve things in life, which usually cause for celebration once done.

So, I'll ask it again. How do we celebrate? I don't know how...
Kjell is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 06:44 AM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Psalm 118:24
 
CAPTAINZING2000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: ILLINOIS
Posts: 15,203
I've had countless hours of good time since being sober. I no longer have fear in my life.
Let me ask you, did alcohol cause you problems?? Once I picked up a drink, I never knew what the final outcome was going to be. Was I going to cause a fight at a gathering? Was I going to be arrested for driving under the influence on the way home? Was I going to wreck my car on the way home? Was I going to have to call in sick the next day at work?
Don't delude yourself into thinking life can't be fun without a drink in your hand. Without drinking, you can have some control over your self. You can choose to be happy
CAPTAINZING2000 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 06:46 AM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
 
vegibean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: SE and then South some more
Posts: 2,648
I do it the same way just minus the alcohol, seriously. It took me the first couple of years of really avoiding the "drinking" occasions and I still don't go and hang out in bars, kwim?? However, if it's a holiday or a big social among my closet friends, I definitely go and bring my own beverage. I've had several GREAT times hanging with everyone so far this year. Thanksgiving, Christmas and Super Bowl Sunday.
vegibean is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 06:57 AM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
 
littlefish's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,650
Normal people can celebrate without alcohol, very easily. They might drink, but they put the champagne glass down after a couple or one refills, or they may not even finish the second glass.
And, they have a great time.

It sounds like you have connected the word "celebrate" to "drinking". They are not connected. I see people celebrating and having good times without drinking, or drinking moderately, all the time.

It's just a matter of learning new habits and new ways of thinking.
littlefish is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 07:06 AM
  # 5 (permalink)  
mergirl
 
Gypsy Feet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Paradise
Posts: 4,161
I went over to a friends house and made him corned beef and cabbage, saving him from another night of "broke-bachelor" cuisine. On the way home I drove by several bars with hammered people on patios, and wondered how many extra hours I would have to work to pay for that. I'd rather work less and spend more time on the beach =)
Gypsy Feet is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 07:44 AM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Follow Directions!
 
Tazman53's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Fredericksburg, Va.
Posts: 9,730
How do I celebrate now that I am sober?

I live life to its fullest, totally aware of my surroundings & what I am doing. When I drank I got drunk & usually did not even recall half of the prior day & darn sure was not awre of what I was living.

Have you ever woke up in the morning & wish you had gotten drunk the night before?

I celebrate many things by living them, not getting drunk & forgetting them, I celebrate that I will not embarass myself or my family by being drunk, instead I carry on intelligent conversations, I dance if the occasion warrants it & have a great time because no one I ask to dance turns me down because I am drunk. I play games because I am sober & can do so instead of sitting on the sidelines getting drunker & not participating.

I used to think the same thing.... How will I ever have a good time if I am not escaping reality? It has turned out that reality is awesome when I am part of it instead of drunk & escaping it.

I get invited to far more things since I am sober then I ever did when I was drinking. My family today likes me being there.......... SOBER. I enjoy being there sober.

When you were a kid did you get drunk at your 6th B-Day party? Did you have a good time?
Tazman53 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 08:32 AM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 1,585
Kjell, even though you put the question out there as simply as possible, I am not sure I get it. Do you mean how do we commemorate and get into the feeling celebrating, or what do we drink and eat, or what do we do to be merry?

If I picture a group of people getting together at a restaurant for a work goodbye party, they all start out in the same way; they order something and sit there and talk (and wait till their orders come out). The celebrating has already started. Once the drinks come out, the celebrating gets colorized or modified by the drinks and in some cases the celebrating has actually stopped and something else has come about (how much of the purpose for being there is still present, in other words, once the alcoholic does its thing, especially for someone who has a "relationship" with alcohol).

I suppose a husband can drink while waiting for a baby to be born, but I can't imagine that being allowed while in a hospital room. Celebrating is experiencing a happy event, and the natural thing to do is to interact and enjoy the moment. If alcohol is present for some people, well, they are adding that to the mix.

Even during my "using" state, I was aware of how to celebrate without alcohol. I would abstain while others drank (or didn't). (I drank later, by myself and celebrated nothing, but that is a different story.) Now that I don't drink anymore, I can still somethign being celebrated. I can be goofy without being drugged up or I can laugh without being drunk, etc, etc. Not really sure where to go with this question, but I gave it a try.
Toronto68 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 08:33 AM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: NJ
Posts: 20,458
I will be going to my first family gathering since I've stopped drinking on Easter Sunday.

I know I will not be late, because I am up much earlier these days (since I'm not hungover everyAM)...I have offered to help with cooking a side dish and bringing a dessert. I have offered to do the drive of picking up my mother at the nursing home and bringing her back.

I'm going to bring a bottle of seltzer with me and ask for a splash of orange juice, for after dinner I'll bring an assortment of K-cups teas to share..(they serve liquors with dessert)...since it is family, all I will tell them is that my doctor advised me not to mix alcohol with my meds.

frankly I was abit nervous about this 2 weeks ago, but now it doesn't seem like it's all that important...I'm just "not consuming wine"....I'm not coming to dinner wearing a BIG SIGN or wearing a feathered chicken costume...that would make everyone point at me.
Fandy is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 08:58 AM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Member
 
HumbleBee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Buzz-free Zone
Posts: 1,372
I totally get this...

There's always been a strong direct and indirect connection between celebration and alcohol.

Beginning with peer pressure in school, to drink was to be "cool." Then we grow up, get jobs, find alcohol to be a great way to end the work week or to celebrate a friend's engagement.

I couldn't imagine superbowl sunday without alcohol (or any other sporting event for that matter). And we immediately think "wine" to bring to a friend's house for dinner (I love that Seinfeld episode where George argues that bringing a bottle of Pepsi instead of wine is a better choice).

For me, it was a matter of developing new habits and ways of thinking and being comfortable with the choice to not drink alcohol to celebrate or unwind. It took some practice but that's ok.

I think to view sobriety as if "I'm not allowed to drink" is a dangerous thinking process that can breed resentment and make it easier to give in. I'm not 12 after all, and there's no authority figure telling me "I can't drink" - it's become my choice

It's my life, I'm in charge of it and my decision and choice is to not drink. Any change takes getting used to - this is no different (for me).

Can't tell ya how many people I've seen who are "green" with hangovers on this day after St. Patrick's Day. There but for the grace of God go I...
HumbleBee is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 09:09 AM
  # 10 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: UK
Posts: 4,682
I haven't got an answer for this because there were a couple of occasions when i was on one of my not drinking sprees which would generally last a few months where i have been to events like these and had a real blast drinking soft drinks, whereas all the times i have been and have been drinking they have been absolute crap! Even as an active alcoholic i knew i would have a better time at these events not drinking, i just couldn't seem to not drink at them so stopped going to them anymore!
yeahgr8 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 09:42 AM
  # 11 (permalink)  
Heathen
 
smacked's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: La La Land, USA
Posts: 2,567
separating things like 'celebrating' from 'drinking' is just something that will come with time, I would think.. After being sober for a while, I realized that holidays, weekends, bad days, boring days, parties, funerals.. all can be experienced much more fully when present and coherant.

How do I celebrate? By spending time with friends and family, enjoying them, having great conversations, eating wonderful food, listening to beautiful music.. I realized that what I thought was 'celebrating' (by drinking) was nothing close to the life experiences I have now.. and really I just think that comes with time, and hard recovery work to no longer connect drinking with things like that.. drinking has nothing to do with celebrating, really..
smacked is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 10:51 AM
  # 12 (permalink)  
i've done my almost
Thread Starter
 
Kjell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 1,934
Great responses - thank you.

I'm not even comfortable thinking about being in a group of people, in some sort of social setting, without alcohol or drugs. I just don't know how to do it sober b/c I've never really done it (and the times I did, I was uncomfortable and would leave early to go catch a buzz).

I'm going to have to start at some point though or else I'll never become comfortable with it. I can't even comprehend being comfortable in such a setting, never mind having a good time!

The bottom line is I'm fearful of this.
Kjell is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 10:55 AM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Administrator
 
Anna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Dancing in the Light
Posts: 58,620
Kjell,

I have accepted that I am less than comfortable in groups of people, unless I know the people very well. I am okay with that. It's far better than drinking to feel more comfortable and then dealing with the consequences. Do I wish it was easier for me? Yes, I do, but I have found that recovery is about seeing myself as I really am and embracing that person.
Anna is online now  
Old 03-18-2010, 12:02 PM
  # 14 (permalink)  
Member
 
HumbleBee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Buzz-free Zone
Posts: 1,372
Originally Posted by Kjell View Post
I'm not even comfortable thinking about being in a group of people, in some sort of social setting, without alcohol or drugs...I'm going to have to start at some point though or else I'll never become comfortable with it.
As in any change, it'll take time. I also avoided people and events in early sobriety until I got comfortable.

I wouldn't force myself to jump into a social alcohol situation to get used to it before I was ready.

Give it time and remember that there's a big difference between isolating and insulating yourself. Stick with sober, supportive people who can help you ease into new non-drinking social settings. Just my experience...
HumbleBee is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 12:35 PM
  # 15 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 3,095
Originally Posted by Kjell View Post
I'm going to have to start at some point though or else I'll never become comfortable with it. I can't even comprehend being comfortable in such a setting, never mind having a good time!
Kjell, clear, precise directions can be found in the BB at the bottom of pg 100 to the top of pg 102. All of those directions are intended for someone that has taken all 12 Steps and had a spiritual awakening as the result.

I've been sober a while and I still follow those directions.
keithj is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 01:03 PM
  # 16 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 1,585
Kjell, OK, then, I guess just do what you have to do to stay healthy. I am going to have dinner with a friend who will probably have drinks in front of me. I am a little apprehensive about how it might make me feel. Not because I would feel tempted to join in, but about the emotions, not wanting to see it. Not really sure. I know that sh eis someone I used to hang around with and have literally just one drink (or none) and then come home and have my own. So I guess it is kind of new territory as the new/improved me. She may not even have any, who knows. Either way, I am just taking a step, with the knowledge that my sobriety is important to me (I'm at 4 months now too - never been there in my life). I am not a god anymore than anyone else is, but I am going to have a nice get-together sans drinking today and be happy with it.
Toronto68 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 01:05 PM
  # 17 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 1,585
Well, when I say "never been there," I mean, never really stayed away from alcohol that long in 15-plus years or whatever it was that I was "using". That kind of thing.
Toronto68 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 01:11 PM
  # 18 (permalink)  
Psalm 118:24
 
CAPTAINZING2000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: ILLINOIS
Posts: 15,203
Looking back, I wasn't showing up at a lot of social events any way.
CAPTAINZING2000 is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 02:23 PM
  # 19 (permalink)  
Don't resist, allow
 
intention's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: South East of England
Posts: 1,521
Originally Posted by Kjell View Post
Great responses - thank you.

I'm not even comfortable thinking about being in a group of people, in some sort of social setting, without alcohol or drugs. I just don't know how to do it sober b/c I've never really done it (and the times I did, I was uncomfortable and would leave early to go catch a buzz).

I'm going to have to start at some point though or else I'll never become comfortable with it. I can't even comprehend being comfortable in such a setting, never mind having a good time!

The bottom line is I'm fearful of this.
Hi Kjell,

Of course you are fearful.......you are at Step 4 at the moment, do I remember right?

When you have worked steps 4 through to 9, you remove that which is blocking you from God (or your Higher Power) and that is when the promises happen and you have your spiritual awakening. Read the promises on the bottom of P84. The problem (obsession to drink) will be removed.

At this time you will be relaxed in these social situations but until then it may be wise to avoid times where there will be alcohol around. If you can't avoid it then make sure you use all the tools of recovery that you have - most definitely keep in close contact with your sponsor and devise a strategy for you to keep sober for the particular event.
intention is offline  
Old 03-18-2010, 02:32 PM
  # 20 (permalink)  
Member
 
jamdls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Dallas, Tx
Posts: 2,405
I celebrate with chocolate, seriously; I also de-stress with chocolate and "cry in" my chocolate -works wonders for me
jamdls is offline  

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:08 AM.