Dealing With Grief Through The Holidays
The holidays are typically a stressful time no matter what your celebration may look like. Dealing with the loss of a loved one is extremely difficult and when time seems to pass too fast without them, honoring yourself and your emotions to get through the difficult times is necessary, even if it’s hard.
Inform Your Family of Your Needs
If you’ve recently lost a loved one, multiple family members may try to tell you what is best for you, your interest, or even what they expect from you emotionally. You should try to reflect during your time alone. By communicating your needs and tolerability to be consoled, you will honor your boundaries and get to grieve in the way you truly desire. It’s okay to take time for yourself.
Be Aware of Your Limitations
Grieving isn’t just only a mental process, it can also take a physical toll on the body. As the holidays are a demanding time, you should respect what your body and mind are telling you regarding spending time alone, with your family, and getting proper amounts of rest.
Reduce Unnecessary Stress
Overextending yourself during the holidays is common and should be avoided in order for you to grieve. Consider changing your surroundings and don’t shy away from following through completing certain traditions if it means you have to sacrifice comfort or your peace of mind in order to participate. Keeping busy may only provide you temporary relief and you should try to decrease your stress in the long run.
Talk About Your Experience
Chances are, the loved ones in your family are experiencing the same feelings you are. It’s healthy to encourage those around you as well as yourself to accept your feelings and share them as it might help to loosen the pain and tension for all the members of your family.
Be Okay With Accepting Help
Your family members may offer to provide you support in multiple ways and if they insist on helping, you should let them assist with holiday shopping, cleaning, cooking, or decorating. This may give you a chance to lessen the feelings of loneliness you’re experiencing and could be enjoyable.
Overall memories are what keep you and your family connected to the individual you have recently lost. Remember that this holiday season, it’s okay to have multiple feelings and make sure you are surrounded by support and encouragement to deal or grieve the way you want to, whether by sharing memories together or spending some time alone. If you are feeling you will have to grieve alone, know that is never the case. You can visit healgrief.org, a social support network to provide you with resources on your journey with grief.