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Grieving at Christmastime …

Christmas comes every year, whether we’re ready or not. Joyous though the season may be, it also brings its own challenges and stresses. And when one is dealing with the loss of a loved one, the holidays can be especially difficult to deal with, and impossible to celebrate. It’s important for those grieving to acknowledge, respect, and respond to their sadness, even amidst the festivities—and to remember that they can still observe Christmas in ways that recognize and commemorate both the season and their grief.

10 Simple Ideas to Help You Through Christmas Grief

  1. You don’t have to face your grief alone. You can turn to loved ones for companionship and comfort.
  2. Seek a balance between time alone and time with others. Moments of solitude are helpful, but isolation isn’t. Reach out to a friend when you just need to talk.
  3. When you’re feeling low, a simple diversion can be good for the spirit. Watch a movie or curl up with a good book if it suits you.
  4. Attending a children’s Christmas show at a local school might bring a smile, and that’s not a bad thing.
  5. Serving those less fortunate at the holidays helps us recall our blessings, even at a time of loss. And our loss gives us extra compassion for others who are hurting.
  6. Some days, putting one foot in front of the other is all you can do. But it’s enough. Go for a long walk when you’re feeling down.
  7. Christmas worship services are filled with warmth and color that can soothe a hurting heart. Ask a friend to accompany you to a service.
  8. Remember that it’s okay to change or even skip some traditions this year. If you’d rather wait until later to exchange gifts, loved ones will understand.
  9. Find a way to memorialize your loss this Christmas. It could be as simple as putting a loved one’s name on a stocking and hanging it on the mantle. Or perhaps you’ll want to plant an evergreen in the garden.
  10. A gift in your loved one’s name to a charity will help needy families express their love to their children at the holidays, and it will help you feel better, too.

(source: "Grieving at Christmastime" Elf-help book - #20052)

If you would like someone to listen with compassion and help you cope with your grief, consider a Stephen Minister

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