During my drinking career, I do not remember St. Patrick’s Day well, but I do remember what they served. Celebrating holidays sober, for me, was a new experience. I used all holidays, including hallmark holidays, as a reason to party. That rationale later turned into every day being a holiday. If you are reading this, I am sure you can relate. After completing alcohol and drug treatment entering a men sober living home in Austin, Texas, living actual celebrating holidays was a new experience.
In order to celebrate the holiday, I had to learn why we celebrate the holiday first. Although I may have celebrated St. Patrick’s Day for the wrong reason, while staying sober in a men sober living in Austin, Texas, I learned the right reason for the celebration. According to HolidaySpot, St. Patrick converted the Gaelic Irish, who were then mostly Pagans, to Christianity. He was confident in the Lord, he journeyed far and wide, baptizing and confirming with untiring zeal. Upon learning what St. Patrick did, I found the celebration of St. Patrick’s day to be inline with recovery. In essence, working with another alcoholic or addict is essentially helping them convert from a life of addiction to a life of recovery. Now knowing the real reason for the holiday celebration, check out some sober ways, from author Dominica Applegate, to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and events in the area.
Skip the parties
Sure, there are bound to be drinking parties that celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. In fact, there are always parties going on! It’s a good idea to skip the drinking parties if you want to avoid the temptation to drink. Sometimes just the smell of alcohol can be a trigger for someone to pick up a drink. If you’re invited to a party and you know alcohol will be there, politely decline.
Have your own celebration
You can have your own alcohol free St. Patrick’s Day celebration! Go ahead and invite your family and friends and be sure to let them know that there will be no alcohol served. Make some snacks, get the games out, put some fun music on, and have a great time! You can even have a cookout or go to the local park, play some kick ball, Frisbee, softball, and have a picnic there.
Attend a 12 Step Meeting
With all the parties and celebrating going on St. Patrick’s Day, you might feel a bit pressured to pick up a drink, so it’s important that you find some support during this time. Attending an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, or couple of them, will surely help you handle those temptations. Go ahead and share at the meeting if you’re struggling and let the other members give you support and encouragement. If you cannot get to a meeting for some reasons, there are online meetings and chat rooms where you can get some support as well.
Create a new St. Patrick’s Day tradition
If you used to party it up every St. Patrick’s Day regularly, perhaps it is time to create a new tradition for the holiday. Think of some things that you enjoy and choose one activity that you will do each St. Patrick’s Day. For example, maybe you could have a family party, take a mini vacation, or have a movie marathon at home.
St. Patrick’s Day does not have to trip you up when it comes to your sobriety. You can still celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in a sober and fun way with a little bit of imagination and planning. If you are aware of your triggers, do your best to stay away from them and if you’re tempted to drink, give your sponsor or a trusted friend a call for support.
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