Coping with grief due to the loss of a loved one is especially hard during the holiday season. You miss that person more as this is a time where you usually would have been with them celebrating and making memories. While others are running around making last minute arrangements and buying gifts, your left to deal with the fact that your loved one is no longer with you. Grieving for that person should not be considered a bad thing- it's actually a very healthy thing; but there are healthy and unhealthy ways to do it.
One of the essential elements to remember, especially during the holidays, is not to keep these feelings and emotions bottled up. You may feel you should keep it to yourself as to not ruin anyone else's holiday, but by doing so, you hurt yourself more than help. Here at R.W. Baker & Co. Funeral Home, we want to help you grieve your loved one in a healthy way, so, we have come up with some ideas to help you during this difficult time.
Have An Exit Strategy
Family members are not always sympathetic to grieving during the holidays. They tend to have a firm idea of what they consider to be the correct way to act during the family get together. Just because they feel that it should go one way does not mean you have to participate. Nor should you feel bad for not wanting to join in on the festivities. Do what is right for you and your soul. If it does not feel right, have your exit strategy ready. Sometimes just knowing you have an exit strategy can make things like family get-togethers a little more comfortable.
Talk About Your Memories of Them
While this may sound like a no-brainer, you would be surprised at how many people will not even do something as simple as talking about their loved one for fear that people will look at them as weak or worse, looking for attention. Just because your loved one is no longer with you does not mean that their memory has to fade. During the holidays is a perfect time to talk about memories you shared with them. While your sharing your memories, encourage others to share their memories or funny stories as well.
Do Something You and Your Loved One Would Have Done on that Day
Is there something that you did every year during this time with your loved one? Maybe a tradition that only you two shared? Why not do that during this time instead of feeling like you have to do the family get together? Take a hike or a walk, go camping, whatever it was that you did together honor their memory and help you feel closer to them by doing that.
Join A Support Group
Some people find it easier to talk about their grief with others they feel would better understand their pain. They might think that people that are going through something similar won’t judge them for what they feel or say. If this is how you feel, we encourage you to join one. Nowadays a quick google search within your local area will bring up groups, or at least point you in the direction of finding a local group.
Remember that everyone grieves differently and there is no time limit or proper way to cope with your loss. Take this time for yourself. Be patient with yourself. Above all, remember that while this feels like it will go on forever, this is a process and will heal in time. The pain fades, and their memory will live on forever in you.