It’s the holiday season and I couldn’t be happier; it is my absolute favorite time of year!
Maybe it’s all the Hallmark movies I’m watching, maybe it’s the season and the magic I know that it can bring either way I wanted to share some of my thoughts around this time of year.
The holiday season is one of my favorite times of the year and as long as I can remember it always has been. All of the delicious comfort food that is cooked and prepared regularly. The time spent with those you hold dear; don’t even get me started on all of the songs that get played 24/7 in my household and sung sometimes at obnoxious octaves.
Despite all of this there have been some years where Christmas just hasn’t come easy. Where I’ve lost my spirit and joy that comes to me ten fold this time of year. I know this can happen for others too and I know that for some it can be difficult to enjoy the holidays. This can be for a variety of reasons but most often I find it is due to loss. This may be the physical loss of someone they love or it may be they have lost touch with those they love most. Regardless I recognize it may not be the most wonderful time of the year for everyone.
In all reality I could say that Christmas should truly be my least favorite holiday. Eighteen years ago my Papa, my mother’s dad, passed away on Christmas Eve. I don’t recall knowing that he had passed until a few days after Christmas. I do remember the day very vividly however, as it was the first Christmas Eve that I didn’t spend the entire day with my parents, they showed up at our family event later that evening. I remember being so excited to see them finally but also seeing the sad looks on their faces. I knew something was wrong but I didn’t know what it could be sense it was CHRISTMAS! So as an 8 year old child I just kept playing with the gifts my cousins and I had just received and forgot about their sad faces.
After the loss of a loved one Holidays can be incredibly hard for people. As I have mentioned in previous posts the loss of my Nanie last year made the Holidays for all of us a bit more difficult. Quite honestly anytime I heard a Christmas song by Elvis, Brenda Lee or Gene Autry I teared up and most times couldn’t stop the water works from coming. To also see the sadness on my family members faces, mostly my mom’s was toughest.
In my post Family Matters I mentioned how all of my family lives across the country. As kids everyone used to come back to Maine and we would all celebrate Christmas Eve together. When my older cousins began going to college it became more difficult and Christmas Eve wasn’t the same. The loss of not having them around was a tough one to swallow, I was angry for some time and there are some Christmas Eve’s where I still feel the absence of them.
You may not even be experiencing a loss, you may truly just be at a difficult time in your life. You could be struggling financially, having a difficult time in a relationship, or quite honestly starting your life over. When your in a season of “family time” and “togetherness” it can be difficult if you feel alone or are alone.
When and if you are going thru any of what I have mentioned about, it is tough to enjoy a “joyous” season when you’re just not filled with it. When your bitter, hurt, and angry how do you be happy, cheerful and kind? The biggest piece I have taken away is that it is okay to do things on your own. It is okay to also say “Can I come too”? I have also learned to not put myself in situations where I knew I’d end up snappy and frustrated at others. Just because I was in a sour mood didn’t mean I needed to be that way towards others. On the flip side, if you know someone is who is going thru a loss be respectful. Be empathetic to them for what they are going thru, try to still include them in activities that bring merriment.
I won’t deny that this season can be a very tough one but try and embrace the small things. Remember my Crawl. Walk. Run. post? Take in the Christmas Lights, smell the Christmas trees (or a candle that smells like one), bake or any other holiday activity! Just give it a shot!