If you are sad this Christmas, it is ok.
We tend to feel that the holidays aren’t a time for sadness. That we should magically “feel better” or at least pretend to be doing fine. And while around some people it may be easier or best to pretend, it is important that with ourselves and our trusted friends, we be honest.
Share your sorrow with someone who also shares it. If a friend or family member has died this year, others are also missing them. Reach out, be a connection and remind them – affirm for yourself – no one is alone.
Rarely does any conversation about grief remain sad the entire time. People are remarkable in that way. I don’t know that I’ve attended a funeral where no one laughed. People love to laugh and the laughs come easier the sadder the moment is. So don’t put off mentioning something sad because you are afraid you’ll ruin an evening. You won’t – you’ll enrich it with your honesty and truth and likely, a funny story of memory will be triggered that sparks joy.
It’s ok to be sad at Christmas. It’s right that you miss the person who has always been with you and who suddenly isn’t anymore.
Face your sorrow with acceptance and honesty. Look at this Christmas and name it – it could be a hard, sad, miserable Christmas, maybe the worst one you’ll ever have. Name it and in doing so, take the pressure off of yourself to make it something it can’t be this year.
There is freedom in truth. And there is healing in ceremony.
Light a candle, listen to a song, put out a favorite ornament or bake a favorite dessert – do something small that reminds you of them and brings their presence into your Christmastime. There are simple things you can do to instill tradition, keep their memory close, and move through Christmas with meaning.
That is my hope for all of you who are sad and grieving this Christmas.