Great topic Bob. And, thanks for sharing Junebug! I'm wishing the best, safest, sanest, sober-est Holiday season ever for both of you!
Bob, I think you'll do well if -- you don't forget that you're alcoholic and that maintaining your sobriety is #1 in your life.
I think this is my 25th Sober Christmas coming up -- with no drinks in between the 1st one & now.
Holidays like Christmas & New Years Celebrations are not easy when we're new. For a few years they were the most shakey times of year for me. A lot of memories -- conscious & sub-conscious -- will be going on and producing emotions that we expect and many that we didn't expect.
What I did that helped me was:
1. I carried a card around with me that read: "First Things First". I put one in each of my pockets. I placed them everywhere I could see them and tapped one to the dash of my car.
This helped me to remember -- that I'm alcoholic and because I'm alcoholic my sobriety must come first.
I had another little card with me that I carried and read often. On the front it had the AA Preamble. Inside was the 12 Steps. Next to the 12 Steps was the 3rd Step Prayer, and on the back was The Serenity Prayer. I carried a few of those because I'd wear them out reading them!
2. I did a lot of praying. I'd bop into the bathroom, bathroom stall, or somewhere where I could be alone and I would pray and read those cards.
3. I'd go to a meeting right before and right after main events. If the event was long -- I'd go to a meeting in between. And, I kept another little card with me -- that had AA help telephone numbers & contacts on it. I'd make it a point to find a place to make telephone calls in between events and during the events to talk to another supportive sober alkie AA member.
With those three things -- it helped me stay connected to me, to God, and to the Fellowship -- to help me stay connected to my Sobriety.
Something else I'd do before important appointments was: I'd visualize ahead of time -- the misery & the loss -- and I'd max it out in my mind and picture the mess -- of what would happen if I took just one drink! It would lead to another, another, another, lost jobs, lost positions, loss of freedom, law suits, and you name it up the ying yang!
All you've got to do is: Not have the first drink. If you don't have the first drink -- you won't have the second drink, and the third, and the 100th!
First Things First!