The 12 Steps of Christmas

By Trisha Kostis 12/12/19

"Rarely have we seen a person fail--" Not exactly. Join us as we ring in the season, 12-step style.

Funny-faced family Christmas portrait
8. Made a list of all the relatives who were going to ask “why aren’t you drinking?” © Bjorn Hovdal |

How it Works - Yuletide Edition

  1. Admitted we were powerless over the string of Christmas lights with three dead bulbs, mom’s green bean casserole and Aunt Barb’s warbling operatic rendition of O Holy Night.
  2. Came to believe that a power greater than us would deliver a brand new Toyota Tundra into the driveway in the morning.
  3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to Amazon Prime next day delivery because we forgot that Uncle Dan was flying in on the Red Eye with his 5 kids.
  4. Made a searching and fearless inventory of our childhood bedrooms looking for proof that the 80’s really did happen even though we can’t remember.
  5. Admitted to anyone within earshot that we baked weed into the brownies we brought for Christmas dinner two years before.
  6. Were entirely ready to remove all the defects of character in every person seated at the table; by force if necessary.
  7. Humbly asked dad to remove the shortcomings in our bank account with a big fat Christmas check.
  8. Made a list of all the relatives who were going to ask “why aren’t you drinking?” and became willing to tell them to fuck off.
  9. Made direct deposits into the accounts of every family member from whom we had stolen money in the past; except when to do so would leave us short on rent.
  10. Continued to take inventory and when we found our hidden stash of coke from 12 years ago, promptly flushed it down the toilet.
  11. Sought through chocolate and the Hallmark Channel to improve our overall Christmas spirit as we understand it.
  12. Having survived the family Christmas still sober, we rushed home to our cats and our Darjeeling tea before remembering the world’s favorite drinking holiday is just seven days away.

Happy holidays!

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Trisha Kostis is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in The Sunlight Press, Into the Void, Points In Case, and many other literary journals and online publications. Visit her at