Holiday Highs and Lows in Recovery

Holidays without inventories can lead to depression. I suggest for you (and myself) making a “good” and a “bad” list.

Being a recovering alcoholic and a drug addict around the Holidays can really be depressing. Especially if you’re single, and have a lot of conflict with your family because of your addiction. That is when strong sponsorship and meetings and AA – NA social events can really come into play and be life savers.

Sometimes even with those kind of defenses, fear, self delusion, and self pity can creep in and make you feel like you are worthless or doomed.

I fell into depression this year for different reasons, and I was as scared as I have been in a long time.

You see, I am a real alcoholic and drug addict. When my defenses are low, my head can start winning the war by telling myself how worthless I am and that nobody loves me.

It was when I was at my lowest that I finally remembered about making a “good” and “bad” list. My sponsor has been out of town, and he always does a good job of reminding me to be grateful, giving me “atta boys” and telling me he cares. Since he has been gone, it is obvious now what a difference strong sponsorship makes.

Being a severe alcoholic and drug addict left alone long enough can be disastrous. You can start with one negative thought, and within days after being alone with just your addiction, you may end up with 100 negative thoughts and fears.

I finally did do a “good” and “bad” list. It is amazing how so much good can be pushed aside. I have a lot to be grateful for, when I remember.

When I came into the program I was completely homeless, jobless, ‘girlfriend-less.’ I was on Prop 36 and looking at going to prison. I did not have my family in my life then and I still do not have them in my life today. But, I am a million miles away from where I was back in October 2003.

As long as I keep doing an inventory – just like any successful business – my perception can stay healthy. It does not guarantee a successful business or money or prestige, although a mind that is tune with life with clarity will enable me to make better decisions.

A warped perception could eventually mean a drink or a pipe in my hands. Those kinds of decisions can cost me my job, car, house, animals, my freedom, my life.

The mind can be a powerful enemy.