I can't believe we're already at the bulk of the holiday season. Where did the year go? 2020 has been SUCH a special time.
However, even with that --, we need to make sure to check in with ourselves, especially with the holidays on the way.
In this episode, I discuss some things to take into account and some simple tips to utilize as you work through the holiday season. Whether you are kicking it at home, with friends, or solo.
There are simple things to use as a foundation for your recovery and are for those who are sober curious, new to recovery or have been going at it for a long time. Nothing wrong with revisiting those blocks as we continue to work on our lives.
Stay safe out there, friends! Here is the link to some online AA meetings.
And as always, thank you for listening to my lovely show. If possible, I would love for you to review me on iTunes, Google, Stitcher -- anywhere, really.
If you have comments or suggestions feel free to hit me up via the ways below! And sign up for my mailing list. I do like to do giveaways from time to time.
Hello, my name is Cynthia, welcome to the latest episode of getting together a podcast where we discuss what it's like to get it all the way together or at least attempt to one day at a time. Hey, everyone, this is Cynthia, how are you doing out there? I'm recording this week after the election, man has it been interesting election which I knew going into it, I was expecting any and everything and so not really surprised with where we are right now. But you know, I hope everything will work out and we can start coming together and healing as a country. I have never seen people party I live in Brooklyn, I never seen people party for a president not getting reelected, that was new. And I felt like we were in World War Two. And you know, I have no basis for that. Because of course, I was not born around that time. But it just felt like a whole different world that we're living in. And I'm just like, wow, you know, I just wanted to check in with you guys and see what's up. Hopefully, you're taking care of yourself or doing the best that you can with everything that's going on. Remember to give yourself that level of grace and self compassion and forgiveness. And about the same time being accountable and owning your stuff. You know, because I think that's also important. This month, I really wanted to focus on a lot of just like the holidays and prepping for the holidays and things to do and take into account for the holidays, as some of you guys are maybe aware I have a love hate relationship with the holidays. And I think a lot of it has to do with just like my own family stuff. You know, ever since my mom passed away, I really kind of fell out of the holiday spirit. I guess I still have like that spirit. You know, I like listening to Christmas music, I watch sometimes I'll watch Christmas movies, things like that. But I haven't like I don't decorate really, you know, I still get gifts for people sometimes. But I I've just kind of fallen out of love with the holiday spirits, so to speak myself, my little traditions and things. But I do know that my story may be different than your story. And maybe you're very, you're more close to your family and the holidays are a big deal. Even if you don't celebrate Christmas or Thanksgiving, because I know that's a loaded one, too. So whatever you celebrate, if you don't celebrate, if you do a lot of family gatherings or have a lot of friend gatherings, you know, thinking about like, what's the best way for you to approach that as like a sober person or a newly sober person, or maybe you've been sober for a while and with everything that's going on, you're just like, well, maybe I need to check back in with myself nothing wrong with checking back in with yourself. I'm a big fan of that. I do that often. And so I really want to talk about like how to best prepare yourself because there are certain things that you know, that you may come up against, or you may come across. And there are certain things that you just won't know until it happens. But just being able to say like, Okay, this doesn't feel right. To me, this is the real feel right to my body, I'm going to have to do and try something different and do what's best for me. I think my bottom line is like you need to do what's best for you, your family or friends. If they're really there for you and down for you. I always say this, they will understand during my first year of recovery, if I was in a situation where I was like, I don't know, I need to check in with me, I need to do what's best for me. Like I told my friends from the jump. I told my family from the jump like I went to go see my dad last year, I saw one of my best friends in Virginia last year. I was like, Hey, I'm cool. But the moment that I'm not, I'm just gonna have to bow out for a second. I'll come back, I'll let you know. But I'm letting you know now. So when something does arise, it's not like Whoa, what's up with Cynthia? What's up with her? Like, why is she in such a funk or mood. So I think there's things like that coming to the table to where you are, honestly, and just being honest about it as much as you can. This is if you have a really great relationship with your your family and your friends. I mean, I would say even if you don't, you're just like, Yo, this is what I can tolerate this year. So it is what it is. But if you have a really toxic relationship with your family, then I would like to ask like is it in your best interest to go and see them? I wouldn't say that I've had the best relationship with going home. I my dad has a second wife. She's special. And that's putting it nicely. For the longest time I went home I think maybe like a little bit after like my mom passed away. I would try to go home and do the whole family thing. And then it just became such like you had to tiptoe around her. You had to appease her if she felt like she was left out. It became a thing. She felt like her daughter was left that became a thing. I'm like this too much. Like I take off work, travel, see my father and I'm trying to be present and keep things even keeled because my dad's not really best when it comes to confrontation, especially when it comes to the women that he's involved. With romantically, so I'm trying to keep stuff as even keeled as possible. And it got to this point where it's like, I'm not enjoying this, like, I'm not enjoying this. And I was still drinking at the time. But I think you have to start like really thinking about that type of stuff. And it's like, Are you enjoying this? Or do you dread it, and I was like, I was coming to this point where I was dreading it. And it wasn't helping, because I would be like, at home with my dad dealing with her crap. And then I would be like, Okay, well, I'm gonna go hang out with my other friends who drank like a lot of stuff hanging out with my drinking buddies in Maryland at that time, and get like blitzed or loaded, you know, just to kind of deal with that stuff. Or I would rent a hotel and not stay there. So and then make sure the hotel bar And I would go and have drinks at the bar, things like that, just to kind of keep myself even because I didn't want to talk deal with her until my father's fit within the context of that as well. So I think it's like looking at this holistically. And maybe if you're a newly in recovery, and you have a lot of a lot of like tension, or you're dreading maybe looking at saying like right now like maybe this is not the best time for you to go, everything has happened with COVID. I mean, I'm not saying making an excuse using that, because COVID is very serious and everything like that. But I think a lot of people are understanding about the traveling because of everything that's happening right now. All I'm saying is like, you really need to look at what's best for you. And if you think you will be able, you're strong enough to go through this, without your familiar are your usual crutches. And if you're not, that's fine, you'll get there. Or maybe if you fit in even if you felt like you know, I've been fine every year, but this year is just really special. Because it's such special for a lot of people, especially for me, I'm plusle for most of the world, I'm sure taking that into account 2020 has been special. I feel like you said that a lot of people were like, Alright, I get it. But if you do decide to go home, I really wanted to talk through what to do for your own benefit, like what to do for your own benefit, telling people ahead of time, I'm a big believer in just like leading with the truth because there's no like gray area like this is what where I am right now, this is what I'm going to do in order to protect my sanity. If your family's a big like if your friends or family or big drinkers, you know, thinking about like, well, what can you do to kind of keep that desire Bay, whether it's like writing stuff down, whether it is bringing your own I like I've talked about this before too, is like bringing your own beverages to things. A lot of people were like, well, I shouldn't influence a party. I should be you know, but I'm like people bring stuff to parties all the time. If you're wanting to bring your own thing, bring your own. If it's seltzer, if it's in a beer or in a wine or whatever, bring it are a special mocktail that you meet, do that and bring it have something that you can supply and have something that you can feel like you're part of it. And also maybe just try to like reframe what you guys doing, like maybe if it's around food, maybe you try to be like, okay, we talk we bring interesting dishes instead of trying to think about like interesting drinks to bring, maybe it's you guys are doing more games hype things. So it's not the focus isn't solely on just like congregating in a room with music playing or if there's music, dance, there's so many different things that you can kind of like propose to kind of keep your mind active, right? Because I feel like if you're because I feel like for me, if my mind isn't active, and I go more into reactive state and things that I normally wouldn't pay attention to, I start to pay attention to, like, I'll start to pay attention to the smell of the wine or the smell of alcohol, or like how it looks in the glass. Like I'll start fixing eating. So I keep thinking about like, Okay, well this is interesting drinks are I have interesting mocktails to try or I brought my own to try interesting food to try. We are exchanging gifts. So there's things like around that and or there's like even games and stuff we're doing as a family or friends, you know, I have things to kind of keep my mind engaged and in the present moment. And I think that's beneficial and helpful. But I like I said from the jump, I would say just lead with where you are like if your friends and family are there for you, they understand where you're coming from. And if they are not, then I say boundary up, like you know, say like, I can only take parts of bits and pieces of this, I can do dinner, but I can't do like dessert and drinks, I can do this or I can do that. And it's like totally okay to say like, I need to take a step back. I'm tired. I need a rest. I don't want to take a nap. I'm going to go and have other plans. I believe in like, you don't have to really explain yourself. You just need to say like, I'm just gonna go do something different. And that's fine. Like you will come back I think we get so wound up in like, well, we have to be there. We This is what we do. This is what everyone's supposed to do. But everyone does that. Everyone celebrates things differently. Everyone has their own tradition. Some people don't have any and that works for them. Some people would rather be alone. Some people rather be with people. It's totally fine. I think you just need to honor that. You know, this is maybe the first time for you doing a holiday sober or the is a special year for you to be sober during the holidays. And just acknowledge that fact. And just be okay with that. Because I, the moment that you're not okay, it's like when you start making those conditional statements, you start saying the F ends, which was basically a conditional statement. But you also start making excuses. And then glore. And maybe you'll start glorifying your old past life. So it's always about being present, being realistic, playing that tape for it as much as you can. But also just being honest about where you are to yourself first, and then to those that matter or care about you, because they want to make sure you succeed, and they have your best interests at heart. And if they don't, then you need to also just decide for yourself, whether that's the situation you want to put yourself in this year, or ever. Because, you know, I stopped going home for a minute because I wanted to have like a Safety Network for myself, because I wasn't getting that from my family. And I was upfront about that. And my dad didn't necessarily want to hear it, but it was the truth. Because you have to preserve yourself, you can't feel like I say this, I feel like I'm just being so cliche today, friends, but you can't feel your cup, if yours, you can't pour from an empty cup, you can't do it. And like the holidays are so quick to deplete those cup resources, at least for me. And I'm like, you need to make sure that you have that overflow for you. So you can keep walking, keep going. And you don't have to recover from your hot like visiting home or visiting or doing something with your friends. You don't have to spend a day or two or a weekend recovering from that. Because that isn't healthy. And it's not worth your time. And especially if you're new to recovery, you need to keep your sense of view, because there's so much that's happening, you know, in your world and in your life. So yeah, I really wanted to just start unpacking some of those things with you guys. I'm going to take it from the stance of like, if you are really tight with your family, how to really approach that and broach that with them. But then also, if you're not tight with your family, or friends or whatever, and you don't want to be alone, like how or if you want to be alone, like how to like broach that or approach those types of topics. I've been on both sides, been happy to spend time with my family. Now I can because I have the appropriate amount of boundaries or with my friends, but also when I didn't have that, like what types of things that I would do are what I would do differently now that I know. So I hope you join me, I will it will definitely be sprinkled in. So within the next two weeks, that's what I'm really going to focus on, both on the podcast as well as in social content. So follow me there. I mean, it's been a weird year, we'll come out stronger. I know. It's just keeping yourself in the forefront and not letting that go. And just knowing what you need in order to keep moving throughout the day. not always easy. Not always pleasant. I always say that, but it's so worth it so beneficial and you'll be able to make it through the holiday season. unscathed. I sound so dramatic. What's up with this? Why am I so dramatic? I don't know is calling for it. I'm just gonna lean into it. Friends. That's all I'm gonna do. I hope you enjoy this episode. If you have any questions about recovery in the holidays, or how to approach it if you're newly route, sober, sober, curious, been sober for a while, but you're just like, I don't know what 2020 please let me know. Send me a DM on Instagram or Twitter, respond to this post on Instagram, email me. I am assessable and I'm here for you guys. Until next time, have a great day friends, enjoy this week. Enjoy this month. Enjoy the rest of this year 2020 has been a hell of a ride. It's probably going to be like that until the bitter end. So but we're all in this together. Until next time, take care. Have a great one. Talk soon. Bye