Facing the Holidays after Losing a Loved One

The Christmas decorations are already hanging and you can hear the Little Drummer Boy playing in the background. I feel deep irritation as I wonder how I can transfer myself to another planet to return after the first of the year when festivities are all behind the time. Not only do I not feel festive, but the reminder of holiday joy is something I regard that everyone else will be having while I am missing my former life with my husband. I just want to hide myself, dive into a hole and pull the covers over me

This was my first Christmas holiday without my husband, described to a T.

This year is different. I have a new love in my life who is kind and patient and incredibly loving while I continue to process my grieving. Together we have traveled and explored the West coast and New York City. We took my husband’s ashes to the Redwood forest. We bought a home and have moved in. We have deepened our friendship and created a loving relationship of mutual support. I have finished a job and started a new job. I have seen many friends come and go out of my life this year. My mother died this year exactly one year to the date that my husband died.

The key to all of this amazing growth has been being willing to open my life to complete dismantling and creating and building new paths for myself. This also requires trusting in me and the Universe in all choices being for my wellbeing and highest good.

Today we have gathered wondering how we are going to negotiate the holidays ahead and are looking for solace, nurturing, and perhaps this can be the result of community and sharing with each other.

I would like to suggest that the holiday season can be a time for personal growth and getting to know ourselves and what will bring personal joy and satisfaction to our new lives and let go of obligatory burdens to the degree that we can experience a different kind of holiday, one that brings our new selves into the future, selves that can be at peace in our hearts.

Healing Myself

For most of my adult life, I have searched for things to help me to heal from loss. My father died when I was only four years old at a time that I was unable to process or understand much of what had happened. My next major loss occurred when I was in my second year of medical school and my grandmother, with whom I was very close, died before I was finished needing her. Both instances were so hard to understand, at least the why part. It seemed so unfair. I needed both of these people in my life and what was I to do without them. Coping with the loss of my grandmother was done as an adult, however, frequently I felt like the same child that was fatherless at a very young age.

Both of these experiences made such a powerful impact on my life that I have made a career out of supporting people who are grieving their losses. Something that I learned unexpectedly was that supporting others in their grief, helped me, as well. This has become a very special part of my medical practice. Loss is so universal, yet, one does not think much about it until it is very personal.

So, I never thought about having this great benefit of healing from supporting others. People are so appreciative, yet, I really have received such connection with someone who is suffering and missing their loved one, just like me when my grandmother died and my dad died. It is my blessing to be of service.inner healing
Thank you for allowing me to sit beside you and share in your suffering.

I think about the people in my life that I love right now and how special they are to me. I want to appreciate them now and let them know how much they mean to me.