DON'T. TAKE IT. FOR. GRANTED.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Coping with the Holidays


I saw a sticker on Pinterest the other day that said "Be grateful for another day. Not everybody made it, so don't take it for granted." 

That hit me like an emotional Tsunami.  It's that Wonderful Time of the Year but I am not  really feeling the "Joy" of the Holidays. 
Why? 
I lost my dad on New Year's Eve 15 years ago, so this time of the year is always tough for me, especially when it's a time to be happy, to feel Joyful and embrace family...

I am usually very private about this and have told very few people (but the secret is out now).  It took me many years to understand that it's ok to still cry, miss him and think about him.  I used to avoid calling my mom around the Holidays because I knew we would both cry and get emotional.  I realized that was selfish of me so the past few years I always made sure to call her and listen to her tell me how much she misses him.  The key word here is LISTEN.  She needs someone to listen to her so I make sure that I'm available to her (because she is the only parent I have left).

This time of the year can be tough on people for other reasons: feeling lonely, the unrealistic expectation of being perfect (what is perfect anyway?), family disagreements, political madness and the list goes on and on...

And even though everyone seems to be SO happy on their social media pages, the truth is not always so clear.  

So how can we cope?  Instead of feeling sorry, stressed, depressed, lonely, overworked, under appreciated, why not try something like this:


  1. Call a friend and honestly tell him/her how you're feeling.  Vent. Rant.  You might be surprised at the support you get back.  Even if you don't, you already got it out of your chest!
  2. Walk into a church, temple, synagogue, or mosque...you don't have to be religious.  You just need to have some peace of mind and these places usually give you that.  No strings attached.  I always go in and have quiet conversations with my dad.  I tell him what's going on with his granddaughter.  How much she grew and how much she would have loved to meet him.  It might sound silly, but I'd like to think he's listening.  
  3. Volunteer.  Why?  Because it makes you feel good.  I volunteer at a local food pantry and that experience always brings me back to reality.  Find someone in need and lend a hand.  Be the hero for that person.
  4. Be kind.  Everyone is fighting a different battle.  Don't judge.  Be gracious.  Don't act like the Grinch.
  5. Be grateful.  That goes back to the sticker I read the other day.  It's true.  What's the alternative? I'm not ready to hand in my time card just yet.  So everyday when I wake up I'm going to say Thanks I'm still here.
  6. Remember, don't take life too serious.  Enjoy it.  Laugh. Love. Have FUN! 

How about you?  How do you cope with the season?

18 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing something so personal. I lost my mother-in-law April of last year. She was my best friend and losing her, the glue of our family, was devastating. Last Christmas was tough but we stayed strong for my 4 year old...going through the motions for his sake. We're much better this year but it did take time. Talking to others about her and sharing stories was the best medicine for me. Bless you and your family!

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    1. Sarah, thank you for the kind words and for sharing also! I have the tendency of not sharing and would rather go thru the stages alone, but talking about it helps a lot.

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  2. This is a beautiful post. Thank you for being so vulnerable and I have no doubt that you helped someone today.

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  3. A lovely post thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings.
    Gemma @ www.gemmasbooknook.blogspot.com

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  4. I am so sorry for your loss. I think it was brave of you to share something so painful in order to be supportive of other people.

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    1. Thank you for reading it. Trying to follow my own advice and talk about it ❤️

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  5. Sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing. I'm sure lots of people will take strength from your words.

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  6. Thankyou so much for opening up with us. I used to be so depressed I couldn't even move on or function on a daily basis but books helped me so much. Books made me alive..

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    1. I'm so glad to hear that you found something to help you. And Books? What a Blessing :-)

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  7. Timely and thoughtful words - thank you for sharing them!

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  8. Lovely post. I think we all need to remember to be grateful and not complain about the little things in life. Simply listening is such a beautiful way to support your mum.

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    1. Thank you. Being grateful puts things in perspective 😉

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  9. Thank you for sharing. This is a beautiful post.

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  10. What a thought-provoking lovely posts. Thanks for sharing,

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  11. Oh my, very sweet and wonderful. I am sorry for the sadness but encouraged by the strength.

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