Grieving During the Holidays
*Trigger warning for loss*
written by Sarah Davis
For the most part, I enjoy the holiday play with my crazy toddlers and baby. Our cookie baking, ornament hanging, and sticky handed hugs. However, there are moments that happen around this time of year that become more prevalent the deeper we dive into the Holiday season.
Sometimes the Tears Just Fall
During those silent nights after the kids are in bed, I sip on coffee or finish a chapter of my book, and I look at the Christmas tree and the lights start to blur, and I cry. I cry because I have four children, but not all of them are present with me. I cry because I watched Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors, but no one mentioned the trigger warnings for loss (thankfully, it is now my favorite Christmas Movie). I cry because there is an ornament of an angel at my mother’s house for a little boy named Ezra, who is mine, but not.
When joy turns to pain
I know many women and men experience the joys of pregnancy only for it to be over, painfully too soon and now we blunder on through the Holidays. I don’t know how you feel; each loss is too unique to say that I do. However, I wish each of you in your own moment of silence to know you are not alone. And those others, like myself care deeply for your heart and the missing piece that isn’t there this season.
If nothing else, I hope that you take care of yourself, your feelings, and listen to what you truly need. This list has helped me greatly when I’m having a difficult time even functioning and I hope it helps you as well.
Sometimes "keeping busy" isn't always the answer. Acknowledge your grief. Allow yourself to express that sorrow. If you have a loved one grieving, give them space to feel safe in sharing their grief. Time doesn't always heal wounds if you stunt your own personal grieving process. You are the only one experiencing your own feelings. No one else can tell you when it is time to move on from grieving or to get over it.
Reach out for help. You're not alone. Your hurt is real.