How To Deal With Grief During The Holidays
There is no easy time to deal with the loss of a loved one, but during the holidays, it tends to be more difficult. It’s a season we spend with our families and friends as we celebrate the year, exchange gifts, and share meals. For many people, the holidays are something to look forward to, but someone dealing with grief may feel differently. When we grieve, we experience symptoms like depression, difficulty sleeping, and a lack of appetite. This makes it challenging to enjoy the holidays. We’ve listed a few strategies that will help you cope during this season’s festivities:
Make a Toast
Sometimes, it’s best to acknowledge the loss that everyone is feeling and bring it out into the open. Pretending that the pain isn’t there won’t make it go away. Have a toast in honour of the deceased; talk about what they meant to you and your family, share fond memories, and accept support from your loved ones. Other alternatives are saving a seat at the table for your loved one or lighting a candle in their memory. Gestures like these can help both you and your family heal.
Be Kind to Yourself
You can expect that tears will flow during the holiday season. Let them. Give yourself the time and space to feel what you’re feeling. If the holiday traditions aren’t working for you, change them. Setting up the decorations may feel disingenuous to you, so skip it altogether this year. Try volunteering your time instead of seeing family if that’s too difficult; you can help out in a soup kitchen or deliver presents to those in need. You may find that helping others will also help you.
This may be the first year without your loved one, or perhaps the grief resurfaces whenever the holidays arrive. Either way, you can anticipate that this season will be a challenging one for you. To help you cope with grief, you can arrange to meet with a counsellor or therapist to discuss your feelings. When you need support, there is no shame in calling up a long-time friend to talk about your grief. What you’re feeling is completely normal and understandable; some people can help you deal with the challenges of grief. Don’t be afraid to seek help when you need it.
It’s always important to look after yourself, but when you’re experiencing bereavement, it becomes even more imperative. Show yourself kindness and understanding during this time. There is no “normal” way to experience grief, and events like the holidays can make your symptoms worse. Light exercise like yoga, walking, or indoor swimming can provide a healthy distraction. Many people find it helpful to keep a grief journal and talk about their everyday experiences and thoughts.
It’s incredibly difficult to lose a loved one during the holidays. You are reminded of all the dinners and festivities that they will no longer be a part of. But you can honour their memory by commemorating their life, supporting your family, and taking care of yourself. When you lose a loved one, you may be looking for a crematorium in Winnipeg. Alterna Cremation offers a direct cremation service along with a beautiful selection of urns to choose from. To learn more about our services, give us a call.