As we approach the largest holiday of the year, there are some of us who will be lonely and depressed. I want you to know you are not alone; there are many people like you going through the same thing.
My son passed away 17 years ago. For me, the joyous holiday became one of my darkest times. People were having a good time trimming trees, swapping gifts, getting together with family and friends. I just wanted to crawl into a hole and awaken after January 2. “Leave me alone, so I can wallow in my depression.” The first Christmas I was forced to attend dinner at my best friend’s home where they gave me presents and tried to make me comfortable. Unfortunately, I caught a cold and was more miserable for the next two weeks. Looking back, it was a nice thing for them to do and gave me a new memory to live with.
If you have lost a loved one, Christmas can be the worst time for you. The thought of that person not being there with you creates sadness, depression, and the feeling of loneliness, even though you are surrounded by other people you love and who love you.
You don’t want to attend the festivities, but you do anyway. The only way to live with old memories is create new ones. This year when you go to that Holiday event, you won’t be alone; your loved one’s spirit will be with you. The attendees will try their utmost to make you happy and comfortable. You may still feel out of place, but, keep in mind you are healing. You may not notice it, however, the healing process really started with the death.
I was told when my son died, I would have to go through each anniversary, birthday, holiday, etc, at least twice, before I would get more comfortable with them. It works for some people, I still feel kind of miserable when the holidays approach. I know I will cry at least two or three times. It’s OK, I’m used to it, after all it’s been 17 years.
I suggest you attend the events, try to smile, try to enjoy yourself. If you cry, so be it, people who love you will understand. Later you will remember the event as a happy time, even though you didn’t want to be there.
Remember memories are to be enjoyed; eventually the good memories will overtake and hide the bad memories.
You will continue your new life, knowing you will never forget your lost one, and never replace them, but you will be stronger for what you have gone through.
I wish everyone a very Happy and Merry Holiday or Christmas or whatever Holiday you observe; and a new life which will get stronger every day.
For more information see my book “My Son Todd & My Guardian Angels”, by Tom Santos