Each year, important dates are celebrated to commemorate something important in people’s lives. This includes birthdays, wedding anniversaries, holidays, and more. Sober birthdays should be celebrated too. Sober birthdays signify a long road of fighting for sobriety, and each year is another 365 days of choosing life over a disease that wants you dead. Here you will learn about what sober birthdays are, the importance of celebrating them, and tips for sober activities to do for the celebrations.
What Is a Sober Birthday?
Sober birthdays have been around since about the 1940s when they were celebrated nonchalantly as progress and growth in recovery. They first came to light during this time because Clarence H. Snyder carried a memento to celebrate his sobriety milestone. Today, a sober birthday is a reminder of the progress a person has made in recovery.
When Is Your Sober Birthday?
The specific day is an individualized choice, often being the last day someone used drugs or alcohol. However, the day after someone last used can also be a sober birthday. Or you can use the date you began treatment at a rehab facility.
It should be noted, though, that relapse does not define failure. You can continue celebrating your sober birthday even after a relapse. You can also choose to celebrate two sober birthday dates. Celebrating two dates can remind you that you must always work on maintaining your sobriety. You can also just celebrate the day after your last relapse. You get to define the date and its significance. You can also choose if you want to celebrate your sober birthday at all.
Why Is It Important to Celebrate Sober Birthdays?
There are multiple reasons for celebrating a sober birthday. The reasons involve celebrating you, reminding you of your past struggles as well as your progress, and reminding you to thank those that helped you in recovery. Here are some reasons to explain the importance of celebrating sober birthdays.
Comparing Life Then to Life Now
When you celebrate a sober birthday, you are able to remember what life looked like in the past and what you had to do to reach the point you are at. Looking back at the times you struggled in recovery and thought you would ever be sober and looking at your life now as you celebrate a year or more of sobriety is a blessing. It shows you that you have the power to maintain sobriety and keep moving forward in your recovery.
Saying Thank You
Sober birthdays serve as a reminder to thank those that got you to this point. You can say thank you to the friends that never left your side, your sponsor, your mentor, and whoever else helped you become the sober person you are today. Consider writing a thank you note or even taking them out for lunch. This will show your gratitude for all they did for you.
Tips For Celebrating a Sober Birthday
When you celebrate a sober birthday, it is obviously important to have no alcohol or drugs present. You can have loads of fun without these, so here are a few activities to consider when your sober birthday comes.
Go to Dinner With Your Sober Buddies
A great way to celebrate your sobriety is by being surrounded by those that helped you get to this point. Go out to a sober dinner with your sober buddies. These could be people from your treatment center, your mentor, buddies from your support group, sober friends, and family members. At the end of the night, indulge in some desserts to commemorate just how special the day is.
One of the best ways to celebrate your own sobriety is to help others struggling with addiction. Celebrate your sober birthday by working with others that need guidance by offering advice, an ear to listen, and just spending time with them. As you reflect on the times you felt lonely and needed advice, and someone helped you, work to be that person for someone else that is struggling. What better way to celebrate a sober birthday?
If you are part of a sobriety support group that gives one-year chips or tokens, celebrate your progress by getting yours. Having it in your possession will serve as a reminder of your sobriety each time you look at it and the hard work it took to get to that point. Celebrate with your support group, and don’t take for granted a single second of it.
A great way to celebrate making it another year sober is by treating yourself. There is nothing shameful about buying something you’ve always wanted, such as those shoes you’ve been eyeing for months or those new headphones you can’t stop talking about. Take a sober buddy with you and go shopping together to celebrate.
At Northstar Transitions, we understand the importance of sober birthdays and place emphasis on them. Your sober birthday is a day you can remember all of the hard work you have done to maintain your sobriety. It also celebrates all of the people that got you to this point in your recovery. You will be reminded of all of the work you did to get to this point and be able to celebrate yourself and those that helped you get to where you are. Taking a day to celebrate your sobriety is important, and you get to choose what day it is and what significance it has to you. Remember that your sober birthday is your own, and you get to choose if, when, and how you celebrate it. For more information on sober birthdays, contact Northstar Transitions at (303) 558-6400. We can help you plan sober events for your anniversary or answer any questions you may have regarding sober birthdays!