Usually, around this time of year, people reflect on the past eleven months and start thinking about the future. We think about the things we did, people we spent time with, and where we went. We think about what we’d like to change for the upcoming New Year. We make plans to travel more, work less, save more money, and spend more quality time with those we love. We plan get-togethers with friends and family, shop for Christmas presents, and decorate our Christmas trees. For those that are not sober, this list may look different, or may not exist at all. As an addict, you may forget to go to the parties you’re invited to or may be too inebriated to attend even if you remember. You may miss opportunities to spend time with friends and loved ones, and you may miss out on all that the season can offer. You might not have the money to buy gifts for others, but there is a gift you can give, that will out do anything you can buy. Here are some reasons why sobriety is the best gift that you can give to others, and to yourself.
The Gift Of Sobriety
You’ll remember it all. | Think back to last Christmas. Do you remember where you were, or who you were with? Chances are if you were using, the memories are fuzzy at best. This year, make memories and find joy in the fact that if you have found sobriety, and those memories will now last. Picture the joy on your child/niece/nephew’s face as they open up their gifts, and imagine what that will feel like. Now imagine that in ten years, you’ll still be able to recall that sight, and that feeling. Memories are a beautiful gift to give yourself.
Your loved ones will be thrilled. | Trust me, your friends and family are just waiting for the day when they can share the holidays with you being truly present. Maybe you skip out on events intentionally, or maybe you just forget. Maybe you do make an appearance but are constantly thinking of when you can escape. Sobriety can help you focus on the moment and really take everything in. You may not realize it, but your friends and family really do worry about you. Wouldn’t it be a wonderful gift to take that worry away? Sure, they’ll probably still worry a little, but not in the same way.
You’ll feel every emotion. | Now, before you say that you use so that you don’t have to feel, hear me out. Yes, you’re numbing all of the negative emotions, but you’re also numbing the good. Do you remember as a child the magic that you felt around this time of year? Maybe it was from watching a favorite Christmas show or putting the decorations on the tree. It may have been reading a special Christmas story or sledding down a big hill. You can still feel all of that again. Yes, there are bad emotions that can come with the good, but believe me, feeling far outweighs being numb. Writer Marilyn Spiller says this about her sobriety: “Remember when the Grinch feels his face and it’s wet from crying and he’s like, “What is this?” That’s me. I spent so many years anesthetizing my feelings, I am as raw and emotional as a toddler, and it feels amazing.” She goes on to say, “I am a grateful, happy, joyfully tearful, fortunate, sober person. And I am feeling every one of those emotions in this minute as I write. Maybe, just maybe that deserves an exclamation point. Or two…”
You’ll have more time. | Many addicts don’t realize it, but using drugs and drinking take up time. How long were you in the bathroom shooting up? How long were you in bed recovering from the massive hangover before you drank again? Sobriety frees up more time than you can realize. You’re not waiting to score, or passed out somewhere, but you’re out and about enjoying the hustle and bustle along with the rest of the world. Or maybe you’re just reading a good book. Either way, you’re able to do more.
You’ll look good. | I know that looks shouldn’t be one of the main concerns, but imagine walking into a holiday party and having everyone turn and go, “Wow.” In sobriety, your physical appearance will improve. Your hair will grow stronger, and your skin and your eyes will clear. If you’ve put on weight from drinking, you’ll probably lose a few pounds, and if you’ve lost weight from other drugs, you may gain a few healthy pounds. Look at yourself right now. Is the reflection staring back at you the one you want to see? If not, there’s no better time to make a change than right now.
You’ll have more money. | How much do you spend on drugs or alcohol per week? What do you have to do to get that money? Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to work a normal job, get your paycheck and be able to buy food, pay rent, and maybe have some left over? Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to go Christmas shopping? It’s all possible in sobriety.
It’s also possible to become whatever you want. This is the gift of freedom. You will no longer be defined by what you drink, smoke, or inject. You can be anything in the world, but you’ll never have to be a HOSTAGE to the chemical again! You can go back to school, or get that job you’ve been eyeing. You can travel anywhere, and you can do anything. Picture the end of your life. What do you regret not doing? Now write it down, and start planning on doing it. It doesn’t need to be a grand trip around the world. It can be learning how to surf or getting married one day or graduating college. Make your to-do list as big or as little as you want. The world is your oyster. Go out and grab it.
Contact Clearbrook Today
Are you or someone you love struggling with drug addiction or alcoholism? Clearbrook Treatment Centers can help. With over 40 years of experience and providing effective treatment, we have had the privilege of watching our patients restore their lives through sobriety and recovery. If you are in need of help, please do not wait any longer. Give your family, and yourself, the best Christmas gift possible. Call our Admissions Specialists today for further information.