How to Survive Grief During the Holidays

December 21, 2016

 

How to survive grief during the holidays 

I wish I had a manual for you to take with you on your journey through grief. Why do we have to encounter such pain and sorrow all year round after losing a loved one, but why is it during the holiday season that the pain must intensify? Yes, of course, it is because we can’t hug, laugh and enjoy the beautiful moments of being with our loved ones who are in heaven, while such a joyous and happy part of the year approaches. It feels like a windy road with an exhausting uphill battle that has been building and building the last few weeks. Some of you may be experiencing your first holiday season without a dear loved one and some of you may be going through your 25th go around. I am going to simply state right now, grief is a bitch.

Excuse my language, but it’s the truth. But, I hope what I write next can help ease you just a bit and put a smile on your face knowing that your loved ones are truly near by and a reinforcement that you can get through this. How do I survive grief during the holidays? You will survive. I promise you. Surviving grief is by crying, laughing, staying in your PJ’s all day, barely eating, forcing yourself out of the house, putting a smile on your face, breaking down, hugging, leaning, loving…being. There is no survival guide on how to overcome or how to act. I want you to know right now do NOT put an act on for anyone. Grief is real. Hiding grief is like trying to hold down vile vomit that just wants to come out. It’s almost impossible to hide. If you’re thinking, “I don’t want people to have sympathy for me or constantly ask me if I am okay.” This is what you do, send out a quick message to everyone, “If I leave the room during the holidays for a bit, please give me my space to grieve, I will be okay.” It will be understood without question. Don’t be embarrassed to cry either. Most importantly, don’t hinder yourself from enjoying the holidays. Imagine being on the ‘Other Side’ and looking down upon your family and friends as you see them rejoicing, laughing, spending time together, making memories and laughing about amazing stories of you, how would that make you feel? HAPPY! Your angels love to see you happy. 

Traditions may feel broken by the grief but continue the traditions in an angelic way. Be sure to hang their stocking, to pull out their favorite menorah and light candles, to hang their ornaments on the tree and to cook their favorite meal. We are all together. Where else in the whole wide world, universe, galaxy, dimension, would your heavenly angels be when you need them the most? Right here next to you.

Yes, we so fucking badly want their physical presence here. We want them here with us now, every moment of every minute, we want to be with them on the other side, but I know in this moment your angels are telling you to not give up. To know that you will breathe through this, that they are not gone forever. Souls are made up of energy so do you know what that means? “Energy can neither be created or destroyed.” Souls cannot die. They are not far from you. You are entirely loved, supported and protected. 

Your angels telling you now, “ The new year ahead does not mean you leave me behind, I go with you. I continue to travel with you, to laugh with you and give you my signs that I’m around. I’m so happy to know that when you saw that red cardinal in the tree today that you smiled and felt my presence. I drop pennies and dimes to make sure you know I am always leading you in the right direction. I love that you pick them up and place them in your pocket, I hold on tight to you. I made sure you looked up to the sky to see the hawk circling over you and instantly feeling a sense of protection. I am so glad you turned the station on the radio to stumble upon the song that reminds you of me most. Hey, it’s okay that you don’t visit my grave that is just my parking spot. Please know I am not left behind. I am better than ever, I am free, I am whole. I am not trapped by my illness or disease any longer. I am a free bird. Please know I will be the light for you that will guide you during your darkest hours. Better yet, I will be waiting for you here on the Other Side, we will be together for eternity, please live your journey peacefully, wholly, fully, as I will be riding along side of you. Don’t look back in the rearview mirror, I am not there, I am the sun that is setting before you.”

Written by Candace Dalton

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