It’s that time of the year again! For many, Fourth of July is the ultimate holiday. It’s sunny, it’s warm and there are tons of things to do: swimming, barbecues, parades, festivals and fireworks.
What more could one ask for?
If you are working at your recovery, you might be wishing for the day to be over.
If temptation wasn’t hard enough on a typical day, it’s that much harder when everyone around you seems to be celebrating with fun, parties and alcohol. What’s a person like you supposed to do?
As difficult as it may sound, drop the negativity and put your red, white and blue party hat on. It’s America’s birthday, and you’re invited.
Here are four tips for surviving Independence Day – happy and sober.
1. Start Your Own Tradition
As a newly recovering addict, it’s probably best NOT to go to a Fourth of July party where there will be booze. No matter how much you might want to feel normal for a day, going to a party with alcohol is going to be extremely stressful. For this reason, now is a great time to start a new tradition. Ideas include a movie, bowling, a museum, an arts and craft show or an amusement park.
2. Be Available for Others
If you are having trouble finding people to do something non-alcoholic with, consider a different option such as volunteering your time or babysitting. There are plenty of animal shelters with dogs that need to be walked on these days, and plenty of parents who would love to get away for a few hours! Make yourself available to help others.
3. Attend a 12-Step Meeting
Another way to spend the day is to attend a 12-step meeting. It’s comforting to be in the presence of others who are experiencing some of the same feelings as you. If you are not a 12-step program member, find an online meeting at www.e-aa.org or attend a live meeting in your area at www.aa.org.
4. Throw Your Own Bash
There’s no reason why you can’t throw an epic party of your own. Invite all of your sober friends and bust out the board games and video games. Have a dance party. Show a few flicks. Make non-alcoholic drinks and order pizzas, or grill up your own foods. There is absolutely no reason why you can’t have your own party just because alcohol isn’t on the guest list.
Every day is a work in progress, and Fourth of July is no exception. While there will be more temptation around you, don’t feel intimidated by it. You, too, can enjoy the holiday and get through this day with a smile on your face.
Photo Credit: FreeImages.com/RichJeffrey