Depressed for the Holidays

The holidays can be a time of joy or a time of sorrow and depression. Believe me, I know. I’ve struggled through more than one holiday. But for me, Christmas is the holiday that can bring me the most joy or the most depression. And no matter how prepared I think I am, or how many strategies I use, being depressed for the holidays sucks. The common response is to count your blessings, but how do you do that when everything seems like it adds to your burdens? Acknowledge Your Feelings For me, for a very long time, I was in denial because when you say you’re sad or you’re overwhelmed; we consider it whining or complaining. People say, ‘Count your blessings,’ and it’s like, ‘Yeah, I am, but I’m still sad…’ Karen Civil It’s okay to be sad or overwhelmed or depressed at the holidays. If it’s your first holiday without a loved one, it’s particularly difficult.   No matter the why of your depression or sadness or overwhelm, say it aloud. I’m sad. Say it when you’re alone at first. Other people often get uncomfortable when you tell them you’re sad. So until YOU are comfortable saying it aloud, […]

The Most Special Month

Welcome to December, the last month of the calendar year. As I thought about the posts for this month, my thoughts turned to December as the end of the year. But it’s not just an end. According to some, this is the most special month of the year. The Most Special Month of Holidays It’s a month of many holidays. See my posts from last year that gave you a little information about each holiday.  Celebrating and Remembering: 5 December Holidays 5 December Celebrations 10 Celebrations during the third week of December 17 Celebrations during the final week of December I’ve established that Christmas is my favorite holiday in these posts.  A Christmas Crybaby Christmas Carols for You Quotes in the Spirit of Christmas The Most Special Month of Birthdays December is THE birthday month. Why?  For Christians (those who keep the spirit of Christianity), it’s the month we celebrate Christ’s birthday. That makes it an important birthday.  The second reason it’s THE birthday month? It’s my son’s birthday. His birth was the very best give I ever got. December also includes one of my best friends’ birthday. And it includes a beloved aunt’s birthday (though she passed away many […]

Alone for the Holidays

It’s Thanksgiving Day. There are many, many things for which I am grateful beyond words, but this isn’t a post about gratitude. Instead, it’s about being alone for the holidays. The holidays can be particularly stressful for those people who believe the holiday is about what should be done, for people who can not be with family, for people who have had recent personal challenges or tragedies, and for people who feel alone. This holiday season people I know and love are struggling with a variety of issues. As I prepared to write this week’s post, I thought of them and of past holidays where I have had struggles to overcome. I have spent holidays mourning and struggling. I have spent holidays alone. It took years before I felt comfortable doing what I needed at those times. I know I would have appreciated a few tips during that time, so I’m offering these few to you. If you are among those who are struggling with personal challenges or losses, remember it’s okay to feel whatever you are feeling at this time. I think Karen Mcfarland says it best: sometimes Reality Bites. If you are alone for the first time this […]