For some this time of year is all about the wonder, the warmth, the connection and a glorious sense of family, friends, giving and receiving love. Yet over the past weeks I have spent a lot of time with those trying to make sense of their Christmas being a very different story.
There are the people that receive the beautiful large extravagant gifts yet feel completely alone and crave quality time being spent with others instead of wanting for nothing materialistic. Or have had a tough year financially and are not sure if they can even get food on the table little own the extras.
Some are just getting through and portray that everything is going well yet behind the scenes things are crumbling. There are those that feel completely anxious about whether everything is up to standard for their guests and spend an extraordinary amount of time getting things just right or worrying about the what it means for them as a person if it all doesn’t come together.
Then there is how to navigate the fact that there is someone very dear missing, they are truly missed whether it be that they can’t bring themselves into conflict and are sparing the arguments by staying away. They might be working, overseas or interstate with circumstances or finances preventing them from being present.
Then there is how to make sense knowing that this is the last Christmas with a loved one and how to capture every moment to recall in the future. There is also the heartbreaking reality that death brings, the space at the table that was once filled with love that now offers a huge void with days like Christmas being a huge reminder (no matter how long it has been) of their loss.
So what is my wish?
It about having the space and time to express whatever is happening on this day for you. It’s the joy, connection and love but also the reality of grief, of loss, of resentment, of homesickness, aloneness – whatever it is – allow space for it and express it rather than push it aside or have it come out as projected anger, in potent words or self destructive behaviour. Don’t allow others to shut it down, create a private space (with others if that’s what you need) to connect to what you need, whether it be sadness, memories, happiness, pride, gratefulness or grief.
The reality is that Christmas can bring up so many insecurities, abandonments, lost opportunities and loss. Let’s be mindful and know that it doesn’t have to be the glossy magazine type set up, allow yourself to feel what Christmas is for you and find ways to express and connect to what works for you.
If it’s a Christmas with all the trimmings or if it means pretending it is not happening, then do what is best for you and your own wellbeing.
Heres to a safe, expression filled day with moments just for you.