Feeling anxious about Christmas, or whichever December holiday celebrated? We are not alone. We think we are. We worry about the in-laws, parents, money, gifts for our kids, keeping the romance, abandonment, alcohol abuse, anniversary-grief of loved ones lost, and on and on. I’m thinking now especially of our dear blogger-friend, Lisa, who is spending this first Christmas without her mom.
Lisa, we are standing with you. We are weeping with you. You are not alone and we value you.
In this precious sum of days, “the holidays,” going into the space that holds our fear seems almost morally wrong. (Do we really have the responsibility we perceive we do to be “festive?”) The smiles and joy appear to occupy any organ-cell(s), from the lowest creature to our neighbor, who doesn’t deserve more than a broken shoe in his stocking. We think,
How can this be? Why don’t I feel joy or care?
Even when our mind knows the true answers that we are not chosen to suffer, we are not alone and that we are safe to be in the space of our fears – even then, we don’t perceive it. In the cold environment of our lonely selves, white breath condenses, freezes and, made heavy in winter-thought, falls to the ground before the “knowing” has a chance to reach the rest of us.
There are no universal-tips to dispense, cups of warm cocoa or four-sided tickets, except this. Remind any part of us that can hear our friend, that is to say Me:
We weep together.
We are present with our suffering. This does not take sincerity away from the things we actually do still enjoy and feel pleasure with. Inversely, feeling pleasure does not deny the grief or other negative feelings.
We will make it past this.
We love ourselves and see our flaws as tools to use towards furthering our efforts in self-care – potential assets.
We claim our freedom to choose to start over at any time, to choose not to be a victim and to go where our intuitions wrongly advise us not to – our fears and shame.
We take our medication, despite stigma.
We account to ourselves, despite what has happened in our lives.
We keep it basic when things complicate. We return to the home of Me whenever our view of where we are in time films over.
Thank you, Dr. Q.
ruth, u bet. i’m so honored to hear your voice here. keep on.
Pingback: The Holidays and Lonely Me | One child at a time | Scoop.it
Last week, my friends and I decided to make a craft together for the first time. I’m probably the most experienced with crafting in general, so I brought most of the materials that everyone needed, and then some… The project was to make festive Christmas Card holders… and it didn’t dawn on me until we started that I realized I probably won’t get very many this year… The last two years I have gotten the fewest cards ever… so I assume this year I will receive even less. A part of me thought I should just pout and say I’m not making any… Okay, I did say that as a joke, but after hearing it out loud, I had to laugh at how pathetic I sounded… and of course my friends said well at least make four (there were five of us in the room). I thought it was cute because even though they knew my sadness, they just spoke matter-of-factly about it… So I made twice the amount they suggested.
I guess what I am trying to say is, I shared my sadness with people who care about me and gave them all that I could (my craft supplies) and turned it into a fun memory… It sounds corny, but it worked for me. lol
Hugs and Blessings!
I’m a Cricut Circle member too!
i love corn
Sometimes we really are alone and it is not imagined or misperception because of our depression or related mental illness. Divorced, kids far away in California, no brothers or sisters or extended family, tiny social network, etc. Compensating with alcohol abuse does not help. We deserve to be part of the season too. But we are non participants only if we remain non participants. As with everything we cannot wait for results. We must manufacture our own results. Go volunteer for the Salvation Army for the month. You will be astonished how making sure OTHERS have some sort of Christmas will bring the most delightful Christmas to you. I guarantee it.
God bless you, Carl. With all that you have gone through and continue to struggle through, to suggest that “making sure others have some sort of Christmas will bring the most delightful Christmas to you” is so beautiful and so who we, who are a part of this site, have come to know and love. Thank you for making my day, which hasn’t been particularly good until now, a better day. Thank you for being you. Hugs.
yay! a better moment in time. a connection w some element of wonderful. i hope u have more nance. hugs to u too.
u paint a visual that is hard to resist.
Being a friend to yourself is one of the first components in overcoming loneliness.
hoot hoot! say it chris. how has this been so, may i ask, for you?
Some years we choose to be non-participants in the Silly Season – drop off the presents, wish everyone and then head off into a rural area to relax and avoid the clamour. This is preferable than to be reminded of the misery that Christmas can (and has) been. It certainly doesn’t work for everyone but it works for me.
good on u blue. can u describe how this plays out in more detail? sounds like a pretty creative and available option for many of us.
I think Christmas can be a very happy time in some years and not so in others and it’s really up to the individual to decided whether it’s a year to opt out or not. I guess the fact that we don’t have children makes it easier for us to ignore it all and not to be pressured to get into the “spirit of things” – sometimes, we go to friends (our families are on other continents) but everyone has family issues of one sort or another and these always seem to come to a head on Christmas Day. We have volunteered in the past, serving at a charity lunch for the homeless (I see Carl’s comment on this and concur that it’s a very rewarding experience and a way to forget one’s own troubles). This year, we’re heading into the countryside for 4 days over Christmas to play golf and plan to spend Christmas Day exploring the farmlands by bicycle, just picnicking somewhere along the way.
I guess my philosophy is – don’t feel pressure to “do” Christmas, or to do it in the traditional way if you know it’s going to make you feel empty – do it in the way that’s going to make it a happy day for you
so good, blue.
“don’t feel pressure to “do” Christmas, or to do it in the traditional way if you know it’s going to make you feel empty – do it in the way that’s going to make it a happy day for you”
thank u so much for the progressive comment. let us know how it goes. keep on.
Sorry, Lisa, best of luck, love and light to you over the next weeks.
thanks cin for saying this for us. hugs
This year will be 10 years since my mom passed away. I remember feeling anxious for those “firsts”. What I found though is that it didn’t matter the day of year, holiday or not, my grief and my loss was present. Only time will heal.
This year will be very difficult for me – it will be the last year that we celebrate as a single family. Divorce sucks.
yes. it sucks. crapola.
i’m w u on the time thing. my sister-in-law, who lost my niece of 9yrs, now 6+ y/a, told me that it takes 6y to recover from a death like this. standing w u cathy. let us know how u r along the this and that way. keep on.
I’m lucky that my Christmas will be a happy one, but I forget that it isn’t happy for everyone. Holidays can either be happy or they can be sad because they aren’t happy like they should be. I don’t know what people should do when they’re feeling lonely on the holidays. I guess if we are missing someone or lacking in something, we should think about what we do have to cheer ourselves up and think about happy memories. I guess that’s what I’d try to do.
hello duck. knowing u r blessed and lucky, winked at or however we term the coming of goodness is not necessarily and either or to knowing our pain and sadness. I agree that we can b in the space of both if our brain health allows. great to hear from u friend. i’m really happy to know of your Christmas and will think of u. keep on.