Tuesday, December 6, 2016

'Tis the Season

Dear Readers,
Mr. UT and I bought and put up our Christmas tree this past weekend, and I must say, it brings me a lot of joy.
One year, a long time ago, I just didn't feel like putting up a tree, as there are times no one sees it except us.
I never did that again.
This tree is for us to enjoy, and to honor the Christmas season.
It brings light into the gloomy December weather.

Not drinking this holiday season has been way easier than the last two.
The first year was very hard, and my feelings were all over the place.
Last year was better, but I still thought I was missing something, especially at parties.
This year, I have no desire or wish to drink.

I am finding that although I still like an occasional party, I don't need to go to a party to be happy.
I like the connections with people, but I find that need taken care of in other ways.
I now like to leave parties early. 

I am ever so grateful I do not drink.
If there is ever a time that I wish I could, I think back to my life when I was drinking.
I was a mess. My depression was deep, and though not just due to drinking, it was made much worse by drinking.
I was driving drunk, putting myself and others at risk.
I would wake up and feel like a failure over and over, because I couldn't say no to wine.
Mr. UT and I would fight about how much I was drinking.
I would wake up with night sweats and so thirsty.
I had some yucky digestive problems.

One time, at a Christmas Party, I made Mr. UT take me out early so I could get some drinks before going. Then at the party, I drank a lot of red wine. I got so drunk that I threw up on the way home, all over the cute skirt I was wearing. I passed out at home.

Was that fun?
I can't drink. 
I am thankful I came to that understanding before my life was ruined. 
I am a "yet".
Many horrible things have not happened to me, due to drinking..."yet".
But if I start drinking again, all bets are off.

Today, at my AA meeting, I once again heard stories of faith, courage, and love.
It takes a tremendous amount of faith and courage to get and stay sober.
I had to have a lot of faith that I could live without drinking. Courage to speak up and get help. I had to learn to love myself, and pass along that love to other people trying to get sober. 

I now realize that I must be grateful every day that I am sober.
I can't take this for granted.
This is my life, and today I choose a life full of hope, rather than a life filled with fear.
I choose a life filled with peace, rather than one filled with turmoil.

With a Warm Heart on Day 824,