Christmas is upon us.

For those who are grieving, our losses swim before our eyes. The memories assault us. Perhaps we manage a smile, but our hearts are broken.

Yes, I could talk about 8 tips for handling grief and the holidays or 5 tips for dealing with holiday loneliness. As important and helpful as such things can be, when we encounter Christmas Eve and Day without our loved one, everything seems a bit like trying to cover a large, open wound with a tiny band-aid.

There are no words for this.

There is no magic pill or substance that can drive the grief and pain away.

There is no fix for this, and there is no going back.

We feel their absence.

We love, and so we mourn.

Different, yet traveling together

Some of us may have answers. Some of us may have none. Some of us aren’t satisfied with our answers or those given to us. Some of us have some closure, while others do not.

Some around us will not understand. We may be judged, criticized, or belittled. The loneliness and sadness can be intense.

Thankfully, there are those who “get it.” The valley of grief is well populated.

Though our losses are all unique, we travel this valley together. The path is rough, uneven, and unpredictable. We stumble, then steady one another. We fall, then pick each other up. We encourage, comfort, and speak truth. We offer listening ears and open hearts. Along the way, we help each other find hope.

Finding hope through kindness

I believe there’s always hope, even if all the circumstances argue against it. Maybe I’m too optimistic. I don’t know.

I do know this: we can all express kindness and compassion to those around us, perhaps even to a few we don’t know. We can reach out, touch someone, and give, even in our pain.

We can put our grief to work and make more of a difference than we realize. The ripple effects of small acts of kindness can be extraordinary.

We can be a blessing, even as we travel through the valley of grief. Our world desperately needs people who will be kind, no matter what.

Thank you for your kindness to me. So many of you bring me such encouragement with your comments and emails. I’m honored to be able to journey with you. Thank you for giving me that privilege. I’m glad we’re in this together.

So, from me and my family to you, Merry Christmas. Happy Holidays.

 

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8 Tips for Handling Grief and the Holidays

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