Loss, Change & Grief
Suggestions for Dealing with the Holiday Blues
Journey of Hearts
A Healing Place in CyberSpaceTM
The Holiday season can be particularly difficult for those who have lost a loved one. For those facing the first Christmas, or the umpteenth Christmas (or holiday equivalent) spending the season without a loved one can be difficult. For many people the Holiday season is a time that will inevitably trigger memories of Holiday season's past, or the season that never will be. In dealing with this time of year it is important to remember the words of Elisabeth Watson:


    Time does restore to us our quiet joy   
    in the spiritual presence of those we love,   
    so that we learn to remember without pain,   
    and to speak   
    without choking up with tears.  

    But all our lives we will be subject  
    to sudden small reminders   
    which will bring all the old loss back, overwhelmingly.

Elisabeth Watson
This page is a longer listing of suggestions for helping to deal with the "Holiday Blues." (for a shorter version see Suggestions for Coping with the Holiday Blues). The listing is from several different sources, including some brainstorming sessions with friends and colleagues, for what works when we are depressed. Many are just common sense suggestions for every day life, and ways of dealing with the blues...all year long.

Suggestions for Dealing with the Holiday Blues 

It is important to recognize it is not abnormal or even unusual to feel sad or depressed during the holiday seasons, or around other special dates--anniversaries of births or deaths or special occasions. Holidays and special dates can trigger an episode of "the blues," feelings of loneliness, depression and melancholy, especially if one is still in an active grieving process.
We have tried to compile a list of suggestions.

  Keep trying, you may find someone else who is also experiencing the blues and would welcome the chance to talk with a pleasant stranger and may become a new friend.
Do not forget to entertain strangers, 
for by so doing 
some have entertained angels 
without knowing it. 
Hebrews 13:2 
I was at the post office this week, waiting in line with the rest of the holiday mailers and struck up a conversation with a woman waiting to mail packages to her grandsons. We got to talking and I mentioned just hearing the news about my grandmother. She shared her experiences with her parents how she too had lost her mother to Alzheimer's and then later her father quickly to a stroke. I would like to think that by talking about her parents we brought back some memories of Christmas's past.  She also shared her joy of Christmas future. Her daughter, whom she nearly lost to Ovarian Cancer, was coming to spend Christmas with them.
A simple sharing of losses and we discovered that we had much in common, a way of passing the time, but even more so, a way of remembering.
Last updated December 13, 1998
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