we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.

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we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.

Postby ptia » Wed Dec 28, 2011 2:35 pm

My name is Pat... and I'm an alcoholic. Christmas just passed and it was a sad time for me. i found myself regretting the years that i hadn't been available for my children or my family. Don't get me wrong I don't regret where I am today... but I felt myself looking back and being sorry. I believe that if I wasn't a new person, looking at the world through new eyes, then I wouldn't be a new person. My sobriety date is April 16, 2009, but this Christmas was somehow more painful than last. Anyone have any suggestions???
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Re: we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on

Postby PaigeB » Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:31 pm

Hi ptia! I am an alcoholic and also had a difficult Christmas. I haven't had a drink since Aug. 1, 2009 and I am actively working Step 9. Having done my amends to my husband and my mother, I thought that this year would be different, but it was not. I have had the opportunity to speak some other women about what is going on with me and I heard a few things that hit home for me.
1. Expectations are a set up for a fall and are based in ego & self-centered-ness
2. Making amends is not the same as LIVING amends - which require continual practice by me.
3. Sometimes the holidays are just hard for people like us and by nature we want to blame something or some one.

I have to work on making ME the problem - that way I can see what CAN be fixed and what I just have to accept.

Hang in there. This thing works. If you don't have a sponsor, e-aa has a temporary sponsorship program. Keep coming back.
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
The e-AA Group's 7th Tradition link: www.e-aa.org/group_seventh.php
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Re: we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on

Postby ann2 » Thu Dec 29, 2011 1:32 am

Two years is hard. And loneliness during Christmas was recently a topic in one of my online meetings where people with over 30 years share regularly. For me there's lots of anxiety about living up to the model of Christmas, and I suppose that includes having people around to celebrate with. The good news is that it's just another day to be sober.

People shared that our drinking used to be more accepted during the holidays, which might increase our feeling of loss at this time. Loneliness happens to non-alcoholics at this time as well, who are also comparing their holidays to what they see on TV or some perfect ideal from their past or imagination. The truth is that many people are out of touch with families at this time, and in our alcoholic absurdity, we tend to treat loneliness with of course isolation! Very clever of us drunks and naturally quite a failure.

But compare this loneliness to what we knew when in the worst periods of our drinking -- a cakewalk, really.

Someone else pointed out keeping H.A.L.T. in mind -- Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired, all states that make us restless, irritable, and discontented. Treat each -- a nice meal, a good 10th step, some company, some relaxation -- as part of the preventive work of sobriety. One member took the suggestion of reaching out to AA members who are isolated, and found beautiful rewards from that action.

Another person shared how their memories of Christmas had been colored by selfishness. Growing in the program has helped this member discover the reality of those fuzzy dreams of the past, and take action to contribute to the comfort and joy of others celebrating this year, including family as well as those who had nowhere to go this year.

My problem is that i project my ideal of Christmas on my kids, who are usually perfectly happy with whatever comes there way. Getting rid of that anxiety is a day-to-day struggle in the time leading up to Christmas, but sharing about it with others in AA helped me greatly this year.

Thanks for letting me be here,

Ann
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada
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Re: we will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on

Postby Blue Moon » Thu Dec 29, 2011 4:55 am

What Ann said.

I'd also add that the "Promises" are not an absolute. They come and go. Nobody in this fellowship is ever likely to exceed the status of "human".

So yes, sometimes you may feel some regret or fear. If it ever seems long-lasting or overwhelming, chances are you're not doing something you should be doing.
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