Dealing with grief is challenging at any time of the year, but with the holidays being so focused on family, Christmas time can be a particularly tough period if you have lost a loved one.
We have collated our thoughts on how to manage grief this Christmas to give you some pointers to reference back to when things seem overwhelming. Although there is no correct way to deal with losing someone, hopefully, this post can give you a glimmer of hope that you can make it through the holidays.
Honour Your Lost Loved One
Enjoying the festivities of Christmas without your loved one can be challenging to say the least. Here are a couple of ways to honour the ones you loved.
Dedicate Time To Your Loved One
Set a time on the big day to celebrate your loved one. You may wish to visit their grave as a family and leave them a letter and some of their favourite flowers. Hold a moment of silence at their memorial to think about your fondest memories with them, and then, if you are able, share these memories collectively and think about all the wonderful times you shared.
Keep Something On Your Person To Remind You Of Them
We have had some heartfelt feedback from our lovely customers about our Memorial Jewellery, saying that holding a piece of personalised Handwriting Jewellery can help them in hard times. When you need to feel closer to your lost loved one, you can hold your handwritten or Fingerprint Jewellery tightly to your heart and squeeze your eyes closed while you think of them hugging you and offering kind words.
You may also wish to gift a Handwriting Necklace or a Handwriting Bracelet to someone you know also going through some loss to think of each other, to help remind you that you are not alone during this grieving process.
Spend Christmas Differently
Grief can make the holidays overbearing, and you may feel stressed when trying to celebrate as you have previously. If you can’t put up the decorations or bake any of your usual holidays desserts, take the pressure off yourself. If you aren’t up-to much, spend your time cuddling on the sofa with a fluffy blanket and a hot water bottle or with people who can offer your support and a hug when you need it.
If you need to take a year off from Christmas altogether, here are some ideas that can keep your mind occupied in your time of bereavement:
Create New Family Traditions
Making small changes to your traditions may help you when your grief is fresh. For example, by changing the location or changing the games you play or the time you eat your Christmas roast.
Give your time and help out at an animal shelter, hospital, care home or food kitchen. These places are particularly grateful for a helping hand during the holidays, especially if regular volunteers are away for the end of the year.
Spend Time With Someone Alone At Christmas
Offer to spend some time with a neighbour who lives alone or an older person in your town. Not only are you supporting someone through a challenging time but, you may find it helpful to see someone who you don’t associate with your lost friend or family member.
Support Each Other Going Through Loss
Support your family with regular check-ins and calls, and be each other’s rock.
If you need any more support with your loss, we also have a bereavement support page dedicated to some phone numbers and support links that you may find helpful this festive season.
We would also like to remind you that feeling sad and shedding what feels like a bucket of tears is normal, and you should allow yourself to feel these emotions and create space for being upset. And finally, remember when robins appear, loved ones are near. So when you see this red-breasted bird this winter, you know your loved ones are checking in on you from afar and wishing you a joyous Christmas.