I know experiencing the holiday season without our loved ones can bring up a lot of emotional stuff. That’s bound to happen. But just a few quick ideas about how to navigate the holiday season to make sure that YOU are powerfully in charge.
Customarily, Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful and to show our gratitude. I recommend taking some quiet time during the day to write a letter to your loved one. In it, you could express your gratitude for them and what they contributed to your life. You might even place a token or offering (something meaningful) for them with your letter as you put it in a special place; a self-made altar, a drawer or decorative box that holds the things of theirs that you treasure. Oh sure, you may have a good cry, but let it all out. Crying is the body’s natural way to release pain and the process of letting the tears out creates brain chemicals that will help us to feel better each and every time we cry. Crying won’t hurt you, it will heal you. So don’t be afraid of those tears, or even those emotions that are causing those tears. Feel what there is to feel. It’s okay.
Christmas, is the time of year for giving. There is no better gift than the gift of service. You could plan on doing some volunteer work in the name of your loved one. You could give anonymous gifts. It always feels good to give and to be of service. Taking the focus off of ourselves and putting it onto others can be a well-needed action we can take toward seeing someone smile. Even in our own pain, creating love, kindness and happiness for another will help to ease and heal our own pain. When we help others, we help ourself.
New Year’s is a time for new beginnings. To prepare for this, you could start thinking of a new way of being that would make a positive difference in this world. Perhaps you could be a little more patient, or kind, or even love a little more. Whatever it is… do it all in the name of your loved one and what would make your loved one happy to see in you. Make yourself a greater being because of your loved one and dedicate it to them and the life you shared with them.
Whatever upcoming holiday makes you feel sad and lonely without your loved one, whether it’s Thanksgiving, Chanukah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, New Year’s, or some other meaningful event, plan some ritual, custom, or activity around it (in your loved one’s name), in which you can become involved. Use the essence of that holiday to create something even more special and meaningful as you infuse the sweet memory of your loved one within it. With a plan in mind and at hand, do these bittersweet holidays on purpose – to avoid these holidays from doing you. If you approach this time of the year in charge of the situation, you will become empowered and make it through with flying colors. You just might even experience a reprieve from your sorrows with a bonus of comfort and peace.
May you find peace, comfort and happiness in this holiday season! You certainly deserve it.