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Sobriety birthday 'crazies'

Discussion in 'Sobriety Tips and Inspiration' started by medievalmama, Jun 2, 2015.

  1. medievalmama

    medievalmama Community Listener Community Listener

    So many of us get really squirrelly around our sobriety date. That is the time of year when we were truly hitting bottom, and smells, sounds, etc. can trigger memories of that worst time in our lives. Also, it is easy to fall into morbid self-reflection (shouldn't I be 'better' than this? with this much time, I should have accomplished x, y, and z.) I just wanted to offer encouragement to anyone who is going through this. It will pass. It is just another day. Everything is exactly as it is supposed to be.
  2. pineywood

    pineywood Community Champion

    Bravo! Beautifully written words of encouragement. I have been reading many threads and articles about triggers and you have pointed out a very significant event that could be overwhelming for some people. I can especially relate to what it is like when someone gets wrapped up in morbid self-reflection. Sometimes, it is far better to remain focused on everyday events compared to what's happened in the past and what is to become of the future. Sometimes, just making it through the day is a huge admirable accomplishment.
    MrsJones, Steve Dawson and Rainman like this.
  3. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Community Champion

    I agree, whatever you are going through now, always remember and make this your mantra, "This too shall pass." Life is too short to worry about things. Don't pressure yourself. Live freely. Live happy. :)
    Steve Dawson likes this.
  4. JonnyMacdonald

    JonnyMacdonald Community Champion

    I like to reflect on all the stupid things I did and said on my birthday. Yes I know exactly what you mean your birthday you can go out without a dollar in your pocket and you will get drinks, food and high fives. It can be way too easy and soon you are feeling like a king, looking like a beggar and talking like a sailor.
    Steve Dawson likes this.
  5. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    It's also the time to fight any complacence that might creep in. One never can't be too careful. You could be a year or two clean but it takes just one small mistake to lose all you've worked for. Instead of focusing on how far you've come or how much further you have to go, keep fighting [the addiction, cravings — whatever] one day at a time. This should keep you relatively safe. Even when it feels like you'll stumble and fall just fight . . . one more day.
    MrsJones and Steve Dawson like this.
  6. xTinx

    xTinx Community Champion

    What can I say? So true! I used to be so keen on setting goals and timelines for particular endeavors - only to find myself procrastinating some more. I've often chided myself for lacking self-discipline but ended up thinking: why am I so hard on myself? I have to take things one day at a time. I will get there in time. Instead of making endless plans, I've now come up with a better solution... just do it. Nike couldn't have said it better.
    MrsJones and Steve Dawson like this.
  7. Adrianna

    Adrianna Community Champion

    Interesting I can understand how this happens. "shouldn't I be better than this with this much time. I should have accomplished...."
    Well there are plenty other than those staying sober that have this occur. One would have to ask themselves what is present that is deterring me. The mind, the environment, those around you or whatever. I've recently discovered a deterrent that I was unaware of. Out of my control. These sort of things in the blind spot so to speak are liberating. I think stunned might be the best word for this realization. Even as people react to the realization. It's amazing what a little silence will do.
    Anyway my point is, look around observe and absorb what's around you to see if there is anything or anyone holding you back.
    MrsJones likes this.
  8. kassie1234

    kassie1234 Community Champion

    My sobriety date gives me strength, for the most part! I'm almost at 8 years now and with each passing year I try and do something that makes me grow as a person. I've done cooking classes, travelled to new places, and explored museums on my sobriety date. One thing I'd like to do in the coming few years on my sobriety date is start to learn a new language. I think doing this reminds me how far I've come, you know?
    MrsJones and Steve Dawson like this.
  9. OHelloMe

    OHelloMe Active Contributor

    I do not think this is good advice for addiction. It is actually good advice for your entire life. As the saying goes:
    When life hands you lemon make lemonade! (& if you are feeling really crafty, build a lemonade stand and sell it!) It's a metaphor if that isn't apparent, but what I'm trying to say, is own up to yourself first, take responsibility for your actions and finally, learn to forgive yourself.
    MrsJones and darkrebelchild like this.
  10. Steve Dawson

    Steve Dawson Community Champion

    It never occurred to me that other people felt like this too. I gave up drinking on December 31st 2005, it wasn't a new-years resolution, more a doctor telling me that I'd barely survived my latest binge and if I was going to keep on drinking I'd might as well spend everything I had and have a good blow-out because I'd be dead within a year, if not six months. He wasn't exaggerating and I knew it. With the exception of a one-night relapse in 2009 I've never touched alcohol since. I hate New Years Eve as a result, absolutely despise it. Living in the UK where there is such a strong drinking culture is hell at New Years for me. I haven't been outside on New Years Eve more than once since then, I stay in, avoiding all celebrations and news of celebrations, usually put some headphones on and try to go to sleep before midnight if its possible amidst the din of drunken celebrations. New years day is much more fun for me, everyone else is hungover and I'm usually bright-eyed, well-rested and feeling glad I don't have to put up with it again for another year.
    MrsJones likes this.
  11. lexinonomous

    lexinonomous Community Champion

    This is a wonderful word of encouragement. I don't struggle with my sobriety birthday, but I do know that some people do. I find it comforting knowing that I have made it another year without drugs and become proud of myself on my sobriety birthday.
    MrsJones and Steve Dawson like this.
  12. OHelloMe

    OHelloMe Active Contributor

    I just had another thought in regards to this. I used to be an avid cutter. If you're not familiar, it's also known as self injury. One thing I did to help stop was I declared a date my ending point.

    I was 17 at the time. I never fully stopped injuring until I was about 19. I'd mess up every few months for a few years. After the 2nd mess up, I decided that there was no point in resetting my "date," because it would just discourage me from staying away.

    It worked really well. I ended up becoming really proud of having a 3/6/12 months cut free to the point where my episodes became fewer and far inbetween. They finally stopped around age 19. I consider myself cut-free for 10+ years now.
    MrsJones likes this.
  13. melody

    melody Active Contributor

    I know there are a lot of people who draw strength from their sobriety date. I can understand that, but I find that I begin to experience negative thoughts when I obsess about it. I have to make sure that I do not cross the line between observance/celebration and obsessive focus/ celebration. For that reason, after the first year anniversary, I have tried not to make that big of a deal about it. However, the more time that passes the more I can see how to draw strength from it.
    MrsJones likes this.
  14. OHelloMe

    OHelloMe Active Contributor

    @melody I can understand that. For me, I am very sentimental. Not to mention I'm date and time orientated. I always have to know the time. Dates that mean something to me include:

    September 24th - The Day my cousin passed away
    October 24th - My brother's birthday.
    October 29th - My birthday
    November 29th - The day my brother passed away & my parents wedding anniversarry
    March 9th - My anniverssary with my boyfriend
    March 31st - My Cousin's birthday

    I don't know why but dates and times mean a whole lot to me. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.
    MrsJones likes this.
  15. MrsJones

    MrsJones Community Listener Community Listener

    No matter if you do or do not 'make it a big deal' about the day of sobriety, I'd like to say to each and every one of you, Congratulations! You're doing it and as @deanokat would say, "Keep doing the next right thing."
  16. serenity

    serenity Community Champion

    The most important thing that people should remember is that they should appreciate every step that they have achieved to get to where they are now and be grateful for that. They should not compare themselves with others because that will be counter productive.
  17. oraclemay

    oraclemay Community Champion

    I think it may be better to forget the exact date. I don't have one. I just know it was so long ago now and life is great. There is just nothing as valuable as my clear and sober mind. What a wonderful thing it is. It can think, imagine, dream create stories, ideas, pictures. I can talk read and control my body using my mind. The creativity that flows from it is amazing. I can learn knew things and I love it. I have become an information junkie and so I develop my intelligence.