Today is the last day of our holiday. As always, when I’m here I don’t want to leave. This tiny island, of the south west coast of England is a very special place for me. I feel deeply connected to every place here, and profoundly contented and complete when I am here.

As always, when it’s almost time to leave, I collect a list of available holiday dates in different cottages for the next season. I compare what’s available with the children’s school holidays, and wonder if I could pull them from school two days early, to catch a week in a favoured dwelling spot. Because the island is tiny, accommodation is very limited and gets booked up very quickly, especially in school holidays.

This time, I’m looking for a place where we can all stay, J & K and their son, as well as us 5. Then I remember that we don’t know how J will be. We really don’t. And it comes home again to me how the uncertainty of illness affects everything. And, further to that, that life itself is uncertain, and all the planning and manipulation and wishing in the world, can’t provide certainty. And that this of course, is why we should seize each day, make the best of every experience ‘in the minute’, and enjoy what we have right now. I can’t bear to think of J not being able to come here, with us again, so I’m going to plan, at least in my head, as though he will be able to ….

And if he IS able to, and doesn’t want to; well that’s just fine too 🙂

What have I learned from my first ever sober holiday?

  • That I can enjoy myself very well without alcohol
  • that there are some situations best avoided (just as at home to be honest)
  • that the planning I did prior to the trip, helped enormously
  • that the hardest times to refuse a drink were in the simplest experiences- a stop at the pub after an afternoon cycling for example, rather than at a restaurant dinner.
  • that it is a LOT cheaper when you don’t drink
  • That although I have not taken advantage if the early mornings (I have been deeply asleep for an average of 9.5 hours a night) I have loved being 100% fit and involved as soon as I surfaced.

I know I cannot take my continued sobriety for granted, and that that way slippage lies. But I apprechiate it more and more, and the benefits continue to accumulate; this holiday was the last “big thing” I could think of that I have never done sober. And now I have.😎😎😎


  1. Thank you for posting your experience on this. I’m so happy that you had a sober vacation and were able to make it thru. It’s inspiring for me as I approach our upcoming vacation.
    I’m only at day 45 right now and I just took a mini weekend vacation to see my brother and new niece in a different state. I was able to navigate the time sober by telling them upfront that I wasn’t drinking and buying replacement drinks or ordering mocktails, but I think it was easier because the visit was about meeting my newborn niece. So I’m still nervous about a week long vacation.

    Thank you for being an inspiration


  2. Great job, Lily! Getting through vacation is a huge accomplishment. Heads up…once I did this and got home I hit a very melancholy mood for a few weeks. Didn’t really know what was next. Just in case you get those blues too, I have read they are very normal!!


  3. That’s so inspiring to read. Going on holiday sober is a huge mental block for me, so much so I’m not going anywhere this year just to be on the safe side. Thanks for sharing this, I hope you have a good journey home 🙂


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