The holiday time can be filled with much joy. People look forward to precious time with family and friends. Warm meals to fill the belly, special gifts, and a host of other traditions. But what about those that dread the holiday season? Those that fear its very existence and cannot wait till it is over? Are these people Grinches? Not merry this time of year? Not at all. These are people for whom the holidays evoke a host of entirely different emotions. People who have lost their loved ones and find themselves painfully aware of their absence may feel utterly alone. Others have families but they are not healthy ones and have had to accept the painful reality that they cannot maintain relationships with these people. Others may wish to be part of their family but have not been supported in their life style choices and therefore have been shut out by family members. Some people are still searching and have not yet found their special people.
So what can one do to help themselves or others? Try to surround yourself with people who support you. As challenging as it may seem, accept an invitation and resist the urge to withdraw and bury yourself deep within your own thoughts. Allow yourself to feel your pain, and others need not deny your right to it, but try a healthy balance so that maybe you land yourself somewhere between Merry and Dread and can find some peace and harmony this holiday season.