I love all the holidays. I have met some people that for one reason or another get very sad when holidays approach. There have been times when our house was filled with sadness and pain. Ron has a hard time with Christmas because his father passed away on Christmas morning. I do have my moments during the holiday season when I think of Wayne ( Ron's Father) and tear up. I miss my grandparents and several other people that I knew. So what can we do about sadness during holidays?
1. First of all, don't run from it - embrace it. If you are missing someone this year, make sure there are things sitting around that remind you of them. There must be a huge rule to this. You are NOT allowed to sit for hours and cry or get really mopey. Tears may fall, but only about the good stuff. For example, every time Ron remembers his Dad, I remind him how much he liked the holidays. Then I suggest that we go buy his favorite candy or that we sit and have a cup of coffee (his favorite anytime). We only talk about the silly funny or wonderful things about Dad. We stay away from the things that make you want to cry in your soup.
2. Feel the emotion of loss but get back to life as quickly as you can. When Ron starts crying I give him a big hug, tell him how much I miss Wayne too and then I suggest a walk, music, movie, trip to the store anything to change the environment. If you have lost a spouse and you are wondering how you can put things out and without feeling like you are swimming in tears - find a holiday buddy. Someone else who has lost a spouse. Go to church and volunteer to help with children. Invite the neighbor children over for hot chocolate. Don't hide in your house, get out and mingle.
3. Watch movies that lift you. Listen to music that inspires you. Make some craft that you can give away.
4. Don't throw the holidays away. Your mind is powerful. Use it to hang on to what you do have. Example....Amie is in Florida, Ken is in Illinois, Jamie is flying to Jamaica tomorrow to do a wedding, Ron will be working all week. Many of our family traditions will not happen this year. We always spend Friday after Thanksgiving cutting down a live tree, and the Saturday after Thanksgiving dragging out all the Christmas decorations to put up. This year everyone was rushing home and I was left with an empty house and two doctor appointments. Thanks goodness for Mom and Dad. They have been my source of strength!
They are wonderful but can't drag out boxes and boxes of stuff. I prayed for an answer. Last Wednesday while I was doing the Library I watched my darling helper Autumn Howard smiling and humming while she worked. She reminded me of Amie. So.....I invited her over. This Saturday we played Christmas music and dragged all kinds of decorations out. We had a wonderful time!
Try these quotes on for size and see if they make your Christmas a little better.
"Happiness is the only thing that multiplies by division."
"The happiest people are those who are too busy to notice."
"Happiness is a form of courage."
And my personal favorite is by Helen Keller
"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us."
My advice for the holiday.....
Take a moment and eat some chocolate, wear a silly hat, sing a song as if you were toothless and hug everything within 20 feet.
God loves you,