Article Written By: Lisa Joy White, MSW, MA, CT
Holidays – the time when so many people are smiling, singing, wrapping gifts, and rushing around to family gatherings. Holidays may have once been a time of great excitement for you, but if you have suffered a significant or traumatic loss through a death of a loved one, whether recently or years ago, holidays can also bring great pain and loneliness. You may wonder: How will I ever survive this season of festivities? There is no magical fix to eliminate the pain of your grief.
However, other survivors have found it beneficial to plan and prepare. By considering a few practical suggestions, you may also find that you are able to get through this season with a little less hurt and emptiness than trying to just “wing it” or avoiding it altogether. You might even find that you are able to smile and enjoy a few special moments yourself. And that is OK. If this is your first holiday season without your loved one, it will most likely be quite difficult, but you will get through it. You are already surviving a tremendous loss and have made it this far. You will survive this as well.