Friday, December 25, 2009

December Twenty-Fifth

I took that photo three years ago today while taking a run on a frigid snowy Christmas Day.... trying not to die from worry and missing my son who was in Iraq. He returned. We all made it through that year safe and sound. And another sober Christmas was in the books for me. It is, by far, one of my favorite photos. I bought a new camera in July and I do not like it at all. It couldn't take that photo if you double-dog-dared it to. (I gave away the old one)

This morning my daughter and I went to a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous together. As we sat though the meeting, I realized that my daughter was sitting still. This is a medical miracle. That girl has done some serious damage to her neurological system, I never thought her bouncing, jerking, and ticcing would ever end. Seriously. So, on this Christmas morning, not only did I get to go to an AA meeting with my daughter, but I realized that the impossible has happened, and she is able to sit still for an hour. I cried with joy when I realized this.

And I got to apologize to her for the Christmas mornings of my early sobriety when I dragged her and her brother and sister to AA meetings because I was too selfish to realize that maybe my kids needed to be at home and not in an AA meeting where kids do not belong. She, her sister, and her brother grew to HATE AA meetings and it nearly ruined a later opportunity for her recovery and perhaps has ruined an opportunity for another person in my family who may (or may not) need to be in AA. Of all the regrets of my early sobriety, and there are many, the fact that I was so insane about going to meetings that I neglected my family is right at the top of the list. I wish someone had told me that my kids would some day grow up and I could never recapture their childhoods.

Last night I went to mass at 4:00 p.m. I normally go on Christmas morning as early as I can, and there isn't normally a huge crowd at that time, so I was unprepared for the crowds. I had to park in front of a dumpster - which I know isn't approved parking, but I didn't think the trash man was probably coming on Christmas Eve after 4 p.m. and I think that was a safe bet. I got to stand at the back of the church because it was so packed. This used to make me angry. I would think "who are these people and what are they doing in MY church?" And now I think "How wonderful! Standing Room Only in a place of worship! How wonderful that I have a body that is still able to stand! And that all those families can sit down and be together on Christmas Eve! " It was really wonderful.

And this morning is wonderful. Lovely, lovely.

We just ate a lovely breakfast (of course it was lovely - I cooked it!) of omelettes and a lovely wheat toast with melty butter, and will sit down and watch a movie at home before we head out to watch a movie at the theater. Then we will eat all of that decadent food - lobster and steak and baked potatoes and sour cream and little tiny pecan pies that I made yesterday. Oh, yeah, salad too.

Merry Christmas to those of you who observe Christmas. And to those of you who don't, I wish you a lovely December Twenty-Fifth.

I plan to stay sober today and I hope you all will join me.




11 comments:

Patty said...

It all sounds wonderful. Mary. Have a wonderful day!
Love, Patty

Hope said...

A very Merry Christmas to you Mary.

Mary LA said...

You are such a loving mother. And that photo is beautiful.

Ed G. said...

What great experiences for sharing. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

Blessings and aloha...

~Christina~ said...

your gratitude is inspiring! enjoy your family today.

Scott W said...

Merry Christmas, MC.

Willa said...

Merry Christmas, Mary!

Kathy M. said...

I could relate to this post. I have had regrets about how I raised my daughter, too.

Lou said...

Andrew has the tics. Someone told me they would never go away, but obviously that is not true. The capacity of the human body to mend never ceases to amaze me.

Anonymous said...
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Syd said...

It all sounds so good. I am glad that this Christmas was good.