Coping During the Holidays
When grieving the loss of a loved one, making it through the holiday season can be particularly stressful, especially when you’re surrounded by messages that insist we should “be merry.”
Lauren Kenney, Hospice by the Bay’s Grief Bereavement Services Manager, has compiled an excellent list of suggestions to help ease your stress. Here are just a few ideas from Coping with Grief and Loss during the Holidays
- Take care of yourself physically. Experiencing the death of a loved one requires physical and emotional strength. Be sure you’re getting healthy nourishment and a balance of rest and gentle exercise. Fight the tendency to rely on junk food.
- Identify sources of support. It helps to have someone who will listen while you talk about your feelings and offer emotional support without trying to come up with answers to your problems.
- Lower your expectations of what you “should” accomplish. Remember, you are going through a physically and emotionally stressful time. Think ahead about which activities you want to attend, and know that you have the right to decline.
- Help children who are grieving. A child’s ability to cope depends on adults showing that it’s okay to express feelings of grief, to cry, or to say they miss the deceased.
- Plan an activity to honor your loved one. Lauren’s suggestions include planting flowering bulbs or a tree in the yard, watching your loved one’s favorite movie, or lighting memorial candles.
Remember, you’re not alone this holiday season. Hospice by the Bay is here to help.