Holidays with pain and suffering seem like no holiday at all. The usual prospects of fun, parties, laughing, and playing vanish as the reality of struggles and sorrow loom ahead.
How can we overcome this? How can the holidays be a time of joy in the midst of difficulties?
Take each moment captive. Every minute and every situation can be made individual. Instead of lumping the entire day together or trying to take on the entire Christmas season and all of its stresses and joys, take one circumstance and try to deal with the positives and negatives of it.
We not only take each circumstance separately, we do not take the emotions from one situation and let it bleed over into the next. I take a deep breath and try to differentiate between emotions from one problem and the next. Is this emotion from an earlier dilemma or is it from this moment?
The day may look like this -
Kids wake up grumpy
Ill family member has a hard morning
Maybe you don’t feel your best
It is important to take each problem and separate it from others. Often times I find myself taking out my frustrations on a loved one or the frying pan when neither was to blame for my emotions.
When we do respond harshly to someone we love or even someone we don’t like and our harshness had nothing to do with them, we can apologize and begin again.
So, one bit of advice for you that I have had to apply for many years of having a husband in pain is to take the day one breath at a time. The holidays are not about presents, parties, and panic-
The holidays are about love, inner peace, inner joy, and remembering how blessed we are to have a God who loves us so much.
If you don’t get the cards off, or buy all the presents you had planned – it is OK.
Simplify each day, each emotion, each action, each holiday.