When a loved one has passed on, the next group of holidays can be painful, sad, and scary. But your loved one would've wanted you to be happy and joyful, smiling as you remember the good times you shared. To work toward that peaceful feeling, find a way to celebrate your loved one's life this holiday season.
The great memories you had with that person can be a place to start. Pictures are always good, too. They may make you feel a bit sad, but there are usually times in that sadness where you'll find yourself smiling or laughing over something silly or touching that you remembered or saw in a picture. Incorporating that loving feeling into your holidays can help you to heal.
Let Your Faith Guide You
You can use prayer and your spiritual beliefs to help you get through trying or lonely times when you miss your loved one. Sometimes, those feelings are magnified at special times like holidays, and more time to pray or meditate on the peace of God is needed. Take the time you need for prayer even thanking God for the years of life that you had with your loved one.
Hold onto the understanding that your loved one is at peace. Remind yourself that the struggles they faced here in their lifetime are no more. There is comfort in those thoughts.
Dwell on the Happy Times
Of course you miss your loved one, but you also have the joy of having known that person for a period of time.
Use these tips to help you focus on your happy times together:
1. Cherish what you had. When the holidays come around and you start to get sad over what you don't have, think about all the times you did have. What would your loved one want you to remember about him or her?
2. Focus your energy on being joyful for what was. Whether you had your loved one a long period of time or a short one, you had love in your life for that time. That's a very precious gift. Elevate the value of that gift by savoring the happy moments you remember.
3. Remember the good times. Everyone has memories of their loved ones that make them smile or that they re-live again and again. Even if it is just one, take time to enjoy it over the holidays.
4. Do what's in your heart. You might like to hang up your loved one's stocking at Christmas time, light a candle for them, or make a favorite food or dessert.
Mourning is part of the healing process, but remember to celebrate, too. Everyone does things differently when it comes to how they want to show their love for someone who has gone on before them. Focus on a celebration that feels right to you. No matter what it is, if it's right for you, then it's perfect for the occasion.
Because everyone is different, some people might question what you're doing or why. That's okay. Honor your loved one and celebrate their life in a way that brings you joy and peace this holiday.