Ah, the day after Christmas. It’s chilly, but not raining, so grateful for that. Sorry for the extended break in this blog, but I have literally not had a moment’s peace in several days to collect my thoughts, and I didn’t want to just send out recycled meh, and call it a happy holi-daze rerun. Which did cross my mind, but I just decided to let it be.

Hope your holiday season, whatever you celebrate, is peaceful and warm. 

Christmas is always a bit of a mixed bag for me. Part of me wants to run away and pretend that it doesn’t exist, other than recognizing Jesus’ birth. And some cookies. But otherwise, just pretend I can go about my routine until after the first of the year. This is mostly due to so much craziness that has happened around the holiday, and it is not Christmas’ fault.

Anybody out there with me on this? What is it about this time of year that seems to bring out the chaos? When I was little, it was about trekking to grandmas to eat, watch my adult relatives get on my grandma’s nerves and collect presents. One year, I spent Christmas eve in a plane between my divorced parent’s states of residence. When I became a bit older, my mom would have me cooking and cooking until she was satisfied there was enough of the foods she liked available.

At 18, I decided to get married the first time in-between Christmas and New Years as a way to save money, so that Christmas was especially nutsy. As a young mom, I worked, cooked and took care of small people, trying to make their holidays special, while dragging everyone from in-law, to grandma and back again. In 1990, right around New Years, I separated from my ex. Ten years later, my dad passed away in between Christmas and New Years across the country and I couldn’t afford to go to the funeral due to the holidays and the steep cost of airline tickets.

Another year, at my grandmother’s insistance, I sent my daughters, aged 7 and 8, down to her in another state and I was packed off to the big island of Hawaii to a small motel by myself to spend several days over Christmas visiting my mom who had landed herself in jail due to substance abuse issues. In December of 2012, my mom passed away.

So yeah. I get it. The holidays can sometimes be a real bummer. But y’know what? God is still with me and walks with me and has never left me through all of these sad moments. My recovery family is there to love me and lift me up when sadness or anger threatens to rob me of the joy that I have fought so hard for.  Peace and serenity are precious, and I need to use the tools of prayer and meditation, calling people and meetings when things start to feel overwhelming. Which for me, during the holidays, is often.

Right now, I am trying to give myself some grace. My eating right now is pretty crazy, but I am committed to taking that one step at a time to regain control and healthy patterns. I went to the gym today and did the exercising that I could, and I feel good about it. I worked on some long-standing family issues today. So, all in all, it’s been a productive day and I won’t beat myself up about it. I plan on going to a meeting tonight and sharing the challenges in my world, and listening to others share theirs as well.

Balance, grace, and love. Wishing you these as we tuck our chins in and head for the new year.

Much love. my dear ones.