Halloween is in 2 days. This holiday is a huge trigger for many people, including myself. I hadn’t given it much thought, until this week. I am connected with many in recovery on Facebook and Twitter. All week I’ve seen posts daily about parties, outings and triggers– all revolving around Halloween.
For me, Halloween night, even if it falls on a weekday, has included alcohol for well over 10 years. Halloween parties are in full force and always include alcohol, and sometimes include several weekends during October. Yes, October can be one big huge trigger.
Last Halloween was memorable, but not in a great way. It was one of my lowest points, actually. We walked with the kids with a few family members and our neighbors and their kids. We are fairly new to the neighborhood and it is tradition that our neighbor across the street, Kim, has a big Halloween party on Halloween night. Kim started drinking as we were walking, so of course I had to run home and get a HUGE glass of wine (it was the only non-spillable container I had).
After trick-or-treating we went to the party. I was already pretty wasted by the time we got there. I remember laughing a lot and staying really late and joking about having to get sub for me the next day. We stayed (with the kids) really late (I have no idea what time we came home).
The next day, I didn’t get up for work and I didn’t get the kids up for school. We all played hooky and I felt physically dead all day (and probably the following day). I remember feeling like a giant parental failure, and had major paranoid feelings about what I may have said at the party with neighbors, some of whom I had never met- what a great first impression they must’ve had!
This year, I already told Kim that we’ll be at her party. Halloween is on Tuesday. I am not going to be drinking alcohol. If Betsy tries to talk me into it, I will scream and punch and kick. I will miss the party if needed. I do NOT want a repeat of last year. I am using the humiliation of last year as motivation. We may stay late out late. A Tuesday night party isn’t normally my thing, but I know that even with little sleep waking up after an AF night is totally manageable.
Looking forward to getting to know my neighbors for the first time (because last time I don’t remember) and to a no shame-feeling-good-about-my-decisions November 1st <3