I have these fancy drinks that have been in my fridge for a year. Over a year technically, but yeah, a year.
The lemon ones my best girl brought over and I didn’t drink them that night and so there they’ve sat. The blood orange one was for Christmas or New Years and I just didn’t partake.
See, when you’re in recovery – or even if you just choose not to drink for whatever reasons – you tend to get “special fancy drinks” for occasions when others will be drinking alcohol. At least I do. But then I tend to stick with what I know which is lemon in my water. Plain and simple. I like what I like.
But I also really like fancy drinks.
Every time I open the fridge, there they are. Just taking up space. Probably expired or soon to be. My husband says, “when are you going to drink those” often.
Why don’t I drink the special drinks?
Is it because I’m waiting for a special occasion? I mean, we’ve had plenty of those and I still haven’t had them. We’ve had birthdays and anniversaries and soberthdays and gatherings and yet there they sit. I read this post by my friend Shauna Niequist – Burn the Candles – a while ago and it resonated so completely. This is another instance where we wait on the everyday “specialness” when really, every day is special and unique.
How long do we wait? How long do we really have to wait?
I tend to think WHAT WOULD MY 2.5 YEAR OLD TODDLERS DO lately. It’s a barometer of seeking pleasure and what they want immediately. It helps me see that they would never ever keep those drinks in the fridge for a year. They woulda drank the hell out of them right away and not given it a second thought. Because they do what they want to do without thinking of the future much unless we bring it up with them. They truly live in the moment. GOALS.
We don’t have to wait. Why in the world would we have to wait? We absolutely shouldn’t wait. And yet we do. We are conditioned to wait for something really special to celebrate with others rather than just cracking open a bottle and celebrating by our own damn selves. Is there anything more self love conditional than that?
I talk a lot about self love because it’s only been in the last several years that I understand what it means. It’s not selfish. It’s not putting your needs first. It’s simply adding your needs to the mix. Making sure you are tended to in a loving way as you love others.
Self love is healthy. Self love is important. If you feel like you are last in line, change that. You can, you know.
I think of the words I say to people I love. The embraces I give them. The kindness shown to them everyday for no really good reason other than I love and appreciate them. And when they need it most, the forgiveness and the letting go of wrongs. That is how you love someone. And yet we struggle with all that toward ourselves. It’s a steep learning curve, this self love. But you can teach an old dog new tricks. He’s still an old dog though, so be kind.
You know, I would tell someone I love to DRINK THE FANCY DRINKS ALREADY.
No matter how big or how small, I find little ways each day to treat myself with love and kindness. And this is still relatively new. It’s not going out and spending a ton of time and money on myself. It’s not ignoring my kids and husband and responsibilities. It’s simply incorporating self love into the love I dole out to those around me. I am just as important as anybody else and I deserve my own love and kindness.
It’s a small thing each day we can do for ourselves to make ourselves and those around us better. It’s a win-win.
It’s a small amount of time meditating or being grateful. It’s a small amount of time focusing on you in the bathroom – ALONE. It’s going out for pie with your girlfriend or watching Project Runway without discussing anything too deep for a couple hours. It’s crying your eyes out over an enormous loss that you know will impact your family for the rest of your lives. But for you in that moment, it’s just you crying your eyes out and releasing that pain.
It’s incredibly important time spent on ourselves that makes everybody around us better too.
It would seem we have forever. That our days become weeks become months become years and yet, the fancy drinks remain in the fridge. Just a small reminder that we matter too. Every time I open that door I am reminded that I am worthy of these dumb drinks. And I can drink them anytime I please. I AM IN CHARGE HERE.
I say today is my favorite a lot. And it’s true. Because we just don’t know what’s coming down the barrel toward us. So let’s really commit to celebrating and loving the everyday. Find something, anything to celebrate and let’s drink the gd fancy drinks already. We are all worth it and this life, man, well, this life is so much more than I ever dreamed it could be. But let’s face it, it’s rough out here at times too. We all need a little celebration each day. Cheers!
See also: What happened when I learned to love my imperfect self.
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