It’s 2016. Really…it’s 2016. I’m lying in bed wide awake. No New Year’s Eve activities this year as I’m fighting off a sore throat that’s been plaguing me off and on for a couple of weeks now. I spent the afternoon and evening alone, and it was actually good to do. I slept for quite awhile which I needed and then spent time on the piano later on. It’s been a strange holiday season for me this year. It’s been a bag of mixed emotions, both good and bad.
I’m feeling somewhat philosophical tonight…I don’t even need booze to get that way. 😉 I’ve been at this blog for a year and a half now and have had 6,000 views. 82 different countries. I know in the big scheme of things that’s not very much but in my little world it’s huge. I don’t check the stats very often but when I do I can’t help but notice that someone or several people from Brazil have consistently been following my blog. I appreciate ALL of the readers so much…but I want to especially reach out tonight to my Brazilian friends and tell you how much it means to me to see that you are interested in what I have been writing these past months. Thank you with all of my heart!
So…I feel it’s important tonight to talk about the holidays after loss. This may not speak to all of you, especially if you’ve not lost someone close, but to those who have, I hope this helps.
I am not a professional or an expert. I can only tell you how my holiday season has been and hope that it helps you to know that you are “okay”.
I honestly have been in quite the slump this year. My Christmas shopping was mostly last minute. I still have a couple of gifts at home for friends that I haven’t given to them yet simply because I can’t motivate myself to wrap.
This is year two without Mom for Christmas. I’m not counting 2013 because she died just a few days before Christmas so there were many things that ran together that year that pretty much negated the holiday aspect.
So…for me year two has been interesting. I have found that I have been much more depressed this holiday season than last and have felt much more alone. Someone told me once that year two would be worse. I don’t recall after my dad died if it was or not since it was so long ago.
I think the first year you expect hard. You expect to feel sad and empty. After that there’s a switch you think you’re supposed to turn off to eliminate those feelings, and when you can’t, you question if you’re okay – “normal”. I really believe that we don’t give ourselves permission to grieve enough. We set a time frame up that we should gauge our feelings by. I’m just as guilty as anyone else of that at times. But the truth is, we all grieve in our own ways and in our own time. Nobody can tell you what is appropriate. Your only concern should be that you are functioning in your day to day life. If you aren’t, then it’s important to seek a grief counselor to help you through because you may be dealing with depression too at that point. It’s good to feel…it’s healthy to feel, but feelings should never control you.
But know that it’s ok to miss your loved ones. They made up such a huge part of your life – how can your feelings possibly be turned off? My mom – I miss her more and more. I think as the shock of loss wears away, the realization of life without that person settles in more.
There are times I think of her and I’m ok. Then there are other times that I think of her and suddenly feel this overwhelming sense of disbelief that she’s gone and a sort of momentary panic sets in…and just as quickly passes. I still have a lot of times that I don’t allow myself to think about her for very long because the reality hits hard again.
So…we plug along each day a step at a time. We work at picking up the pieces so that we can create a new mosaic of our lives. We’ll get better…we are getting better. We just miss them. And it’s ok.
“I know for certain that we never lose the people we love, even to death. They continue to participate in every act, thought and decision we make. Their love leaves an indelible imprint in our memories. We find comfort in knowing that our lives have been enriched by having shared their love.”
Leo F. Buscaglia
Ciao Amici ❤️