An UN-Merry Christmas?

A year ago many of us were preparing for the holidays. For me, it’s Christmas time. Despite the stress this inevitably brings, I usually enjoy this time of year. However, as we all know 2020 has been a crap-shoot. (Yes, I know, that’s probably not very professional of me to write.) This year, most of us will not be with our extended family or friends. Many of us are beyond “Pandemic Fatigue”, and are simply trying to survive the best way we know how.

As I write, I think of all of my loved ones that I will not be seeing this year. I grieve for my children who are living through this time, away from their friends. I grieve for my dear friend, a new small business owner. Prior to Covid, she created a brand new amazing business. Will she be forced to shut her doors like so many others have had to? I grieve for my parents, unable to sit with their grandchildren and watch them open gifts in person. And, I grieve for myself. I feel these prickly, uncomfortable, sad and angry feelings. These feelings that I would prefer to numb, to ignore. Trust me, if I try to shove them down, they come out in other ways. They come out as a Fibro flare, a migraine, a panic attack. Feelings find a way of coming out.

So, what should we all be doing with these feelings? What is needed to maintain our own mental health & wellness?

Share them.

Share them however you can. Write them down. Write down all the embarrassing, deep, dark things that are floating around in that brain of yours. Share them by talking with trusted friends, with a therapist, with someone who loves you enough to listen, without judgement. Holding it in doesn’t make you stronger. You won’t win any awards for carrying your pain alone.

Yes, we are all dealing with our own pain. We are all exhausted by the sickness and isolation and chaos of our current world. But sometimes sharing a burden, lightens it. And in the meantime, as we do our best to make the holidays as cheerful as possible, we can all collaboratively hope that a year from now we will indeed be celebrating with our loved ones.

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