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Friday, December 26, 2014

Holidays and memories!

It's been an interesting holiday season for me... I was really ahead of the game, had the gift baskets for co-workers and friends done way ahead of time, filled with homemade cocoa, chocolate dipped spoons, jars of local honey from a friends hive, homemade soap, etc.   I also was done with stocking stuffers and gifts for the girls and their respective better halves, as well as the hubby and grandson.  I never am that efficient, so it was a wonderfully relaxing holiday season.  Making a conscious decision to do less for gifts helped also.

However, I seem to be having flashbacks or "triggers" that are really getting to me.  As most of you know, I'm a recovering alcoholic.  My mom is getting older, but her behavior is really starting to affect me.  I'm seeing things very clearly, and find myself getting angry with her (internally, if I spoke my thoughts aloud, she'd never speak to me again).  On Thanksgiving, she'd had a bit to drink (not unusual for her, though my dad was the main alcoholic).  As she leaned over me to complain about something (again, not unusual) and the alcohol scent and her words sunk in, it was all I could do to not start screaming "Why are you always drunk on holidays? And why do you have to complain about everything?" Then again on Christmas, after a wonderful morning at home, we had problems with the brother-in-law and then my mom was at it again, disciplining my step-brother's son.  I ended up spending the night on the couch crying my eyes out.  Today I feel hungover (and I don't even drink). Steve doesn't quite know what to do when I am trying to explain what's happening in my mind.  Anyhow, my mom and stepdad are leaving in a day or two for Arizona, so maybe I can work out what's happening w/ my memories.  I will come out stronger in the end, it's just frustrating that at 15 years sober I am all of a sudden getting glimpses of what caused some of my issues.

But, here's some pictures from a really great holiday season...

We have dinner every Monday with some wonderful friends, all younger than us (and I'm only 51).  They are better than family in a lot of ways.

My middle daughter, Michelle, sells art.  This is Santa's Magic Key.

Muck boots from Santa (thank you to my hubby).  I did have to order a smaller size and can't wait til they get here.

My son-in-law made this beautiful usable art (it's to hang game animals on to skin and age).

Lyndsey, home from Oregon State University, myself and Steve.

Austin (he has a devilish look on his face) and Grammy (my mom).

Lyndsey got Steve and I VIP tickets to a great country music festival only 30 miles from home.  But we'll be camping there, first vacation in a long time.  

Lyndsey asleep on Grammy's couch.  She's got to take some time to catch up with that busy college life.

Happy Holidays to all!


  1. Wish I could give you a big hug, Ruth. Whether being a recovering alcoholic or dealing with other bugaboos, interaction with our parents can be so upsetting. The relationship is a unique relationship like none other. Sometimes we have to be strong enough to tell a parent we are choosing not to participate in their negative behavior . . . and then stick to our guns! People (parents included) will get by with awful behavior for as long as they get the reaction they are seeking. They feed off that (unfortunately . . . but that's them being sick, not you) and it's their way of feeling superior when the truth is they are woefully unhappy and lacking in self-worth. They have to tear you down or make you feel as bad as they do. Cutting them off at the knees, so to speak, will bring on their anger and nastiness initially but once they realize they don't have the power to get the reaction they desire anymore, the whole situation can change.

    Oh my goodness gracious! Where the heck did I get my psychology degree? No where with any credibility, that's for sure! Just life's hard knocks and bumps on the head!

    1. My mom is 73 now, and I've just made the decision to not spend as much time around her as I have in the past. If I said anything to her at this point, it'd just be more "angst" for me. However, I'm only being that way with my mom. With other's, not so much! And my mom is a child of an alcoholic and hides her head in the sand re: alcohol, depression, etc. She won't admit she has any issues. Thanks for the big hug!