A Letter To Those Grieving On Christmas

A Letter To Those Grieving On Christmas

There are so many ways to honor those we love and have lost.

To the ones grieving the loss of a loved one,

First of all, I want to say that I am sorry. Losing someone you love dearly is hard, and the holidays often make it harder. Having people gathered around, often pushes you to realize that your loved one is gone. I completely understand what you are going through around this time.

Whether this is your first Christmas without a loved one or your eighth, it isn't easy. Holiday's magnify the loss. Traditions are different, the mood of the house is noticeably different, and there is a hole in your heart. I have learned that it is okay to cry and face whatever emotions that you are feeling on the holiday. Your feelings are valid, and it is more than okay to feel every feeling that you are during this time. I can't begin to even think about how many times I have just broken down into tears missing my dad or my friend. Don't be afraid to feel.

I have also learned through the years that it is okay to avoid situations or gatherings that you are not ready to face yet. Take the time you need to grieve, but also make sure you surround yourself with people because, in the end, it will help. If you surround yourself with people who love you, they will be able to help you and support you. Take care of yourself first, and do what is best for you. Ask for help if you feel like you can't do everything on your own. Ask family or friends to help you wrap presents, cook dinner, and decorate the house if it is too much for you to do.

Take time to share memories of your loved one. I had a really hard time being able to do this, but once I finally started talking about my dad during the holidays it helped a lot. Just because they are gone, doesn't mean they are forgotten. Share funny memories sometimes that is the best way to cope. Remember all the good times. Do something special to honor them during the holidays. I always take flowers to my dad's grave around Christmas time.

My dad loved red roses, so every year I go and buy red roses and take them to him. It is hard not buying him a Christmas present, so being able to take him flowers comforts me. Make your loved ones favorite dish at dinner, light a candle in their honor, tie a note to a balloon and let it go. There are so many ways to honor those we love and have lost.


"I know for certain that we never lose the people we love, even to death. They continue to participate in every act, thought and decision we make. Their love leaves an indelible imprint in our memories. We find comfort in knowing that our lives have been enriched by having shared their love." — Leo Buscaglia

Love,

A fellow griever

This article is dedicated to Brooke, who left us too soon and also to my dad. I love and miss you both so much.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels.com

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5 Reasons Why Your Siblings Are Your Lifeline During the Holidays

The holiday season can get stressful but no worries because your siblings will be by your side to help you get though it.

The holidays are a time when you get together with the whole family. No matter if you're related or not when you get a good amount of people together for any amount of time there is bound to be a fight and personality clashes. In the holiday season, stress levels are high which makes for an, even more, trickier situation and sometimes you just need someone who knows what you are going through and can relate. My twin brother is the one who keeps me sane during my time at home at the holidays and I am sure your sibling is too and here's how...

1. They are the ones who know to save you a seat at the Christmas dinner table.


So that you don't have to sit by anyone you might not want to sit by.

2. They can always save you when your family members keep asking your significant other (or lack of) and you just can't take it anymore.


3. They can be you're best friend when you're back home and off your normal college schedule.


4. They can help you shop for family Christmas gifts so that you don't have to do it all on your own.


5. They are there to annoy you because at the end of the day they are your sibling and that's their job.


It is the best time of the year and being with family is great but when the season greetings become too much to handle on your own you can always count on your siblings to help you get through it or at least where you don't have to suffer through it on your own. So, give your siblings an extra hug this holiday season and be grateful you don't have to go through this crazy world alone.

Cover Image Credit: Emma Grace Mayfield

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10 Perks Of Staying At School Instead Of Going Home For Break

Sometimes, college is just more fun.

Caution- I'm about to present a viewpoint that many college kids will detest and disagree with.

Alright, here it is... I don't like going on breaks from school.

*Gasps arise from audience, desks are flipped, people storm out of rooms, someone has a heart attack*

Yes, yes, I know it's not a popular opinion to have, especially considering how much we all want to be done with our schooling for life and just move into our careers already. I get it- breaks provide a way for students to relieve stress for awhile and relax from the constant pressures of taking exams and writing papers. Now, please don't get me wrong, I value taking a rest just as much as the next average college Joe does.

HOWEVER, there are some aspects of being at school that I believe every student needs deep down that we just don't receive when we come back home and do nothing for three weeks. **Disclaimer, this viewpoint does not apply to those of you that actually did something productive with your lives over break. Props to you, an inspiration to us all.** Nevertheless, for those of us who spent our winter vacations as couch potatoes, eating our body weight in cookies every day, here are ten, very valid reasons why being at school can be better than being at home.

1. You, guaranteed, won't get bored.

Hmm, spend the whole day lying on the couch watching Hallmark movie specials and slowly slipping into insanity or go out with your friends and do something fun around campus? Tough one...

2. You will actually have friends.

Chances are, if you go out of state to college, your friends all live in different parts of the country... making you alone and sad over every break. No thanks.

3. Your time is your own.

During the holidays, there are so many family responsibilities and things that have been planned for you, there's not a lot of time to spend doing what you'd like to do. At college, you can take a 5-hour nap, go out with your friends, or stay in the dorm and have a personal spa night. No one can stop you!

4. You'll have a somewhat-decent sleep schedule.

Going on break is the worst because you grow acclimated to waking up at certain times for class or work, which is all put on hold when you go home for a month. You get used to sleeping in until 3 PM and staying up watching Netflix until 5 AM. It's a brutal awakening whenever you do go back.

5. Back up, you'll actually have a schedule and a routine in the first place.

Those of us who value routine and keeping ourselves busy go absolutely insane over breaks. At school, we have our whole days planned out and a set routine that keeps us active. At home, we have uh... none of that.

6. You won't have to deal with crazy family drama.

If you have a big family and lots of people visiting for the holidays, you know how stressful everyone gets and the tension that builds over those weeks. Wouldn't it be nice if instead of hiding in your room to get away from Aunt Mildred's questions about why you don't have a job or a boyfriend yet, you didn't have to worry about any of that?

7. You'll have constant activities and events to look forward to.

I mean, yeah, Christmas is cool and New Year's can be fun, but those are the only highlights of winter vacation. In between, you're doing a lot of lying around and staring at the ceiling or your phone screen. Staying at school means you will always have events to look forward to, whether it's games, socials, parties, or even just hangouts with your friends.

8. You won't eat everything in the fridge.

The holidays have a tendency to add a few pounds onto all of us, especially if you indulge in Christmas cookies more than the average person (@me). Frequent trips to the kitchen can be avoided if you just stayed at school and kept up with the gym routine.

9. You only have to do chores for yourself.

When college kids come home, many of us are automatically brought into the weekly chores schedule... meaning folding laundry for 5 people, instead of one. Wouldn't it be great to just have to worry about cleaning up your own messes?

10. You have your own space.

Over the holidays, many of us are under obligation to spend time with the family or room with relatives to ensure everyone fits. There's not a lot of personal space or time. Staying at school means getting to go back to your dorm whenever you want and being able to plop onto bed and do nothing for hours if you so desire. It's absolutely beautiful.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash.com

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