I’m literally dreading the holidays. I pictured this holiday season so differently.
People keep asking when my family’s get togethers are and what we are doing for the holidays. I just smile and say, ‘I don’t know.’ Because I really don’t. I really don’t know what we are going to do. I don’t know if I’ll get out of bed those days. I don’t know if I’ll take a shower or put on my makeup. I don’t know and frankly – I don’t care.
I don’t even want to put a Christmas tree up this year. I will in the coming years. Just not this one.
I was just browsing the internet and compiled some helpful information for our family members during the holiday season. Hopefully my family understands that this year just isn’t the same for me.
– Please talk about my deceased loved one at holiday gatherings.
– Be a quiet listener, and let me talk about my loved one and share memories.
– Ignoring my grief does not make it go away.
– If I am sad, let me be sad. Do not try to cheer me up. It’s important for me to feel the emotions I am feeling, even though this is considered a season of “cheer.”
– Sometimes it may appear that I’m functioning fine and that I’m doing well. Understand that outward appearances can be deceiving.
– Don’t make comments about next year being better or time healing my wounds; my concerns are focused on the here and now.
– Understand that I can’t do everything I used to do in holidays past, but don’t hesitate to invite me to holiday events anyway.
– Let me cry if I need to. You don’t have to say anything—just hand me tissues (lots of tissues) and be there for me.
– Understand that grief can go on for a number of years. There is no established time limit. Please don’t make judgments about how long it’s taking me to grieve.