My husband has a very large family. His father had more than 10 siblings, and more than 100 people attend the family Christmas celebration each year. There are so many of them that I still can't keep count.
Holiday parties, parades, and banquets can pile up quickly and overload your frazzled nerves. There are always so many events to attend, but I pick and choose a few and forgo the rest. Sometimes it's necessary to avoid certain places or people. If I know I'll be uncomfortable in a situation, I politely decline the invitation. Some people don't understand this, but I think it's better for them to be upset because I didnt attend than to be upset because I had a major meltdown and ruined the festivities for everyone.
I have never been more than a social drinker, and now I refrain from drinking altogether. Some time ago I started to notice that even though I'm in a jolly mood if I have a few drinks, I'll have fits of rage for several days afterward. My medication stops working and it takes a few days for it to straighten out.
Thousands of frenzied shoppers can make holiday gift buying unbearable. I do as much of my shopping online as I possibly can. If I need items from a local store, I make a list and send my husband to pick them up. Occasionally I'll brave the crowds, but I never enter stores during the last-minute shopping rush.
I never have a problem remembering my medicationunless I change my routine. My schedule goes out the window during the holiday season, and my medications slip my mind from time to time. Missing even a single dose can wreak havoc and make me want to retreat to my room and stay there.
It's easy to let things slide during the holidays, but if you allow stress to keep building, it will get the best of you in the end. By the time February arrives, I am usually at such a low point that hospitalization is considered.