Dr. Alan Wolfelt, continues
Do What is Right for your during the holidays
Well-meaning friends and family often try to prescribe what is good for you during the holidays. Instead of going along with their plans, focus on what you want to do. Discuss your wishes with a caring, trusted friend.
Talking about these wishes will help you clarify what it is you want to do during the holidays. As you become aware of your needs, share them with your friends and family.
Plan Ahead for Family Gatherings
Decide which family traditions you want to continue and which new ones you would like to begin. Structure your holiday time. This will help you anticipate activities, rather than just reacting to whatever happens. Getting caught off guard can create feelings of panic, fear and anxiety during the time of the year when your feelings of grief are already heightened. As you make your plans, however, leave room to change them if you feel it is appropriate.
Embrace your treasure of memories
Memories are one of the best legacies that exist after the death of someone loved. And holidays always make you think about times past. Instead of ignoring these memories, share them with your family and friends. Keep in mind that memories are tinged with both happiness and sadness. If your memories bring laughter, smile. If your memories bring sadness, then it's alright to cry. Memories that were made in love -- no one can ever take them away from you.
Lastly, Renew your resources for living
Spend time thinking about the meaning and purpose of your life. The death of someone loved created opportunities for taking inventory of your life -- past, present and future. The combination of a holiday and a loss naturally results in looking inward and assessing your individual situation. Make the best use of this time to define the positive things in life that surround you.
Remember that implicit in Thanksgiving, Christmas and Chanukah is the miracle of human survival and hope for the future.
Our Winter Grief Groups will begin in January. Contact Becky Andrews, 801.259.3883 for more information.