Alone for the Holidays

December 4th, 2013 by admin in Grief, Holidays, Support
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sad holiday

  • Break-ups are hard.
  • Losing someone you love is hard.
  • Feeling alone is hard.

Add the holidays into the mix and things can feel unbearable.

What should you do if you are alone on a special holiday?

  • You can skip the holidays all together – If the thought of carrying on as usual this year feels too painful, perhaps taking a year off from the holiday season will serve you. Check in with yourself. Are you depressed? Are you afraid? Are you avoiding something? Or do you legitimately want to take this year off?
  • You can use special rituals or recreate special memories – If this is your first holiday after losing someone you love, it might feel comforting to honor that person. Make his favorite foods, embrace his favorite rituals, hang a stocking in his honor, share your memories and let your loved one live on through your intentions and love.
  • You can create new memories. Are there things you always wanted to do but you weren’t able to in the past? Maybe there is an event you wanted to enjoy or a certain decorations you used to wish you could hang or perhaps you wanted to travel on the holiday but couldn’t. What is stopping you now? Let yourself create the kind of holiday you are yearning for.
  • Surround yourself with love and support. Reach out. Call. Ask. Ask again. It’s easy to feel forgotten during this time of year. People are busy with their own lives and rituals and traditions. Don’t assume they are too busy for you. They may not know you need support. If you don’t have friends or loved ones near; find a group, volunteer, find a place where you can go and feel less alone.
  • Let yourself feel your feelings and then move on. Pretending you aren’t sad or hopeless or lonely isn’t going to make those feelings go away. Have a good cry. Look at pictures or ornaments and feel what comes up. And then dry your eyes and find some support or create new memories.
  • Give to yourself. Are you going to miss the presents you used to receive? Does seeing your empty stocking on the mantle tug at your heart strings? Fill it yourself. Is it the same? Of course not, but it’s better than being taunted or reminded of your alone-ness every time you walk in the room!

The holidays can be magical and they can be heartbreaking and sometimes they are both in one moment. So up the self-care. Surround yourself with love. Honor your wishes and your wants. Be your own best Santa Claus this year and take care of yourself!