St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah – history & pitfalls. Along with tradition and fun, St. Paddy’s Day can have a downside as well. Sometimes the celebration of the day can be a lot for people. Anyone that has substance abuse issues or even fear of crowds and anxiety can have a really hard time. Also, children or adults who have sensory issues can find the day difficult. We have some history on this week’s blog about the day itself, but also some advice on how to handle it in a healthy way.
St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah – History & Pitfalls
St. Patrick’s Day’s History…
Though rooted in Christian tradition, St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated by all, religious and non, especially in Savannah. The city prepares all year for this spectacular event. The famous fountain at Forsyth is dyed green and citizens are adorning our favorite color. We are excited as the big day approaches. But we must admit, we have to wonder if we ever consider the origin of this special day.
In the 5th century, the iconic Saint Patrick traveled to northern Ireland and converted thousands. While evangelizing, he used the allegory of snakes to help make his point. He declared that he was “driving the snakes” out of Ireland.
Though ironically, there were no literal snakes in Ireland. He was referring to the evil passion and people in the country. He left the country completely different. St. Patrick died on March 17th, 461, which is why we celebrate on that day.
More About St. Patrick and St. Patrick’s Day in Savannah
Often St. Patrick’s Day lands during on the Christian calendar during the season called Lent, the 40 days leading to Easter. During this time Christians remember the journey of Christ to the cross and reflect on their sinful nature.
Christians historically abstained from feasts and alcohol during the Lent season. But, religious authorities believed that Saint Patrick should be celebrated. Therefore, on March 17th, the restrictions were lifted in order to celebrate the life and work of St. Patrick. Therefore, the people were encouraged to have elaborate celebrations on this special day during Lent.
The Pitfalls Can be Aplenty on St. Patrick’s Day
As much as this holiday is so beloved in our city of Savannah…it can have some unfortunate pitfalls. The excuse to participate in excess is one. This holiday can prompt some people to cast away their cares (which is not a bad thing!), but sometimes go a little too far. Those who deal with substance abuse may have a particularly hard time being around all of the parties and partying.
If you feel it might be too tempting for you to be in the crowds and the party atmosphere, we suggest you make sure you’re surrounded by those that support you. St. Patrick’s Day can be just as much fun without drinking or substances, but choose your crowd wisely.
And if crowds in general make you nervous, you might want to sit it out. Or if you or your children have sensory issues, this might not be fun for any of you. Savannah is beautiful any day of the year, and a lot less crowded when it’s not March 17th!
It can be hard to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day for some. And we understand that.
If You Need More Support
We understand, also, that for people with substance abuse histories or crowd and/or sensory issues can find this time of year really difficult. Waters Edge Counseling is here to help. We have counselors trained in substance abuse treatment, and we encourage you to call us at 912.319.5552 or email us with any questions or if you need more support.