31 Dec

I am trying very VERY hard to feel sorry for myself on this dateless New Year’s Eve. Trying and failing. Truth be told, I am thrilled to be relieved of the pressure of attempting to adore one’s amour while waxing increasingly inebriated. I call it RUI (romancing under the influence) and having spent three decades in coupledom I can attest that it is pretty much impossible.

Call me Sour Grapes but in my opinion New Year’s Eve is the worst date night of the year. My heart goes out to the many brave, loving folks who are preparing for a very verrrrrrrrrrry long night together.

Think of it: Millions of innocents feeling pressure to reach the pinnacle of romance under the crummiest conditions: 1)They must spend at least five hours drinking budget bubbly and engaging in senseless chatter. 2)THEN the poor dizzy darlings are expected to stagger home, yank off the Spanx and make love.

Have you ever tried to summon Grand Passion on a bed that felt as if it were spinning at the speed of sound? How about staying chummy with your loved one while both of you sink deeper and deeper into your cups?  I know that premium alcohol ads tell us that drinking cocktails magically transforms you and your partner into supermodels with doctorates in charm and sophistication. I beg to differ.

Here ‘s what I’ve experienced getting soused with a spouse on New Year’s Eve:

1)We rehashed our most ridiculous arguments, including:

Why are you looking at that WOMAN?

I’ve been thinking about the BABY thing.

When are you going to start making more money?

Do you think I look fat in this dress? I don’t look fat! You think I’m fat, don’t you?

2)We spent the evening engaged in awkward flirting or clumsy dancing with other people’s partners.

3)We managed to get home after both of us took the steering wheel and we drove the car together VERY slowly.

4)Champagne-soaked sex was simply AWFUL.

WHAT CAN BE DONE about the year’s worst Date Night?

I have experienced a couple of lovely and very romantic New Year’s Eves. In each case, I was able to find sparkle and excitement with little or no alcohol OMG! LOL? WORD. Here is how:

Glitter: I have had good luck with glitter on New year’s Eve. Yes, I am talking about the shiny stuff used in children’s art projects that comes in plastic tubes and in a multitude of colors. It’s a harmless thing to spread around and creates a magical atmosphere. Ditto sparklers (used with caution), candles, helium balloons and bubbles blown through a small plastic wand.

Once, when I was a child, I went to the New Year’s Eve fete of a family friend and met a sweet bohemian grandmother who doused me and my siblings with glitter and then proceeded to attach party balloons to a plastic cup of champagne and launch the cup into the air.

Dressing up: Over the top glam dressing is a harmless high. It gives you a tremendous lift and makes you feel romantic. It is especially fun if both you and your partner dress formally and even more fun if you are overdressed for wherever you are going.

Skip the champagne: Or have a child’s portion at midnight. While it may be true that a glass or two strips away inhibition, it is a myth, rampant at this time of year, that a large dose of liquor will ignite your love life. Doesn’t experience tell us the opposite?

If romance is what you and your partner are after, why not keep in mind something you already know:

Love without bubbles is the love that truly shimmers.


Posted by on December 31, 2010 in Recovery Journal


2 responses to “Sparkling

  1. Janet Hulstrand

    January 1, 2011 at 12:02 am

    Mary Ellin,

    What a wonderful post! As usual, wise, witty, compassionate.

    Here’s wishing you ALL GOOD THINGS in 2011. (That would include love, of course. But only REAL love, TRUE love, the love you deserve.)

    And if true love DOESN’T come your way in 2011, I know that you will continue to enjoy your new life anyway, and that you will fill the lives of all those lucky enough to be your friend with laughter, joy, and love. Which surely will sustain and surround you with the same as well.

    Happy New Year, dear friend, wonderful writer!!! And thank you so much for your wonderful posts, which have the power to uplift, enrich, and encourage all of us who are “getting over it,” whatever “it” is! xoxoxo

    • mariehelene56

      January 1, 2011 at 5:10 am

      Dear Janet, Bonne Nouvelle Annee to you too! I look forward to being a student in at least one of your workshops…If only it could be Hawaii in a few days!!! (I just saw South Pacific so I am dying to go there of course!) Thank you for the wonderful gift of your friendship and support. Love and Bon Voyage…Have a Happy sojourn in Hawaii.


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