“Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul, there is no separation”-Rumi
Decorations. caroling, shopping. After November has come and gone, the majority of people are preparing for the holiday season. It can be easy to get caught up in all of the hustle and bustle, but it is important to remember that the holidays can be difficult. For those coping with grief and loss, December doesn’t just mark a month of cheer, but for some it marks of a month of remembrance and grief.
Grief is difficult for everybody, and nobody grieves the same way. It is important to remember that what works for you may not work for others, and that is okay. The best way to cope with grief during the holiday season is to communicate with your loved ones. Set time aside to discuss a plan for the holidays and don’t be afraid to create new traditions. In this blog post, you will find some helpful tips and advice from our Bereavement Department.
Things to Remember During the Holiday Season:
- Time doesn’t heal the pain associated with grief. It’s what you do with that pain that does.
- Give yourself permission to cut back on holiday decorations, preparations and gift-giving, especially if you feel those things will make it harder.
- Don’t be afraid to rethink traditions. Change the location of your gathering, or treat yourself to a vacation.
- Remember it is okay to laugh and enjoy yourself. Your missing loved ones would want you to.
Five Helpful Tips for Coping During the Holiday Season:
- Put out a “memory stocking,” “memory box” or another special place. Write down memories you treasure with you and your loved ones, and pick a time to read them together with friends and family. This will allow you all to reminisce about the fun times with your loved one. Don’t be afraid to talk about the one who is missing. Odds are, other people want to talk about them too.
- Spend the holidays somewhere or with someone new, perhaps even invite someone who doesn’t have any local family to spend the holidays with you.
- Seek gratitude. Try to find one thing to be grateful for every day during the holiday season. Write them down daily in a “gratitude journal” that you can look back at later.
- Ignore people who want to tell you what you “should” do for the holiday. Listen and trust yourself. You have the right to say no, and to do things differently if you wish.
- Say yes to help. Don’t be afraid to rely on others during this difficult time. There are many different support systems and resources that can help with grief.
A Message from Our Bereavement Department:
Grief never ends, because love never dies. While the holidays may be difficult to celebrate, we can still take time to reflect on the memories of our missing loved ones that we treasure. You can use this time to also reflect on how far you have come during the grieving process. The holidays are just another step in your journey. If you can conquer these moments, then you can conquer the rest as well. By listening to yourself and communicating with others, the holiday season will be easier and hopefully a little more cheerful.
Click here to visit our Grief Words Library for more helpful articles.
If you would like help coping with grief this holiday season, contact Gulfside Hospice's Bereavement Services Department at 727-845-5707.