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Christmas Time


Bev'sSister

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Anyone have suggestions on how to get through the Christmas holiday after just losing someone? I know a lot of us are going to be going through our 1st Christmas this year without our loved one..in my case it is my sister.

God how I miss her! Every Christmas we used to get together and make a cd of us singing Christmas Carols. I would pretend to be Elvis and she would always be Dolly Pardon. We used to have a blast with this..now, I can't even hear a Christmas song without tears coming down.

How do you do it? I know that my sister wants us to be happy and have a great Christmas, but I can't seem to find that spirit.

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This is a link to a site that may be of some help to you. Personally I have to say you have to do what feels right. If ya want to be alone and cry this year, do it. IF you want to be with friends and family , do it. But make sure you can have some alone time to reflect on things or that as a group you can do this together. At family get togethers try and focus on great times spent together more so than the last days and the bad memories of the Cancer fight. Think happy thoughts whenever you can. Let the tears come when they need to come though and don't fight it. THats my best advice. I still cry at the holidays when I look across the table and Miss Debs big happy face and then i am ok with things for a while. Hang in there, BIG HUGS AND WARM BLANKETS FROM THE DRYER!!!((((((())))))))))))

Click on the link to be redirected. THey may have some info available that helps a little more right now;

http://www.beyondindigo.com/grief/index.php

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I know exactly how you feel. My family brought out the Christmas decorations this weekend and I stayed away as much as possible. I took one look at the boxes and stockings and the tree on Sunday and burst into tears - I couldn't even see something holiday-related without thinking about my dad. It's gotten easier with each day to be around all this stuff but I definitely am not having a holly, jolly Christmas this year. I just can't get excited about it.

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This is so tough. We lost my Dad Dec. 14th three years ago... Christmas that year was pretty much non-existant. No tree, No gifts - we did all get together and have dinner on Christmas day, but, it was anything but "normal". The two Christmases since then, we have gone back to our regular crazy traditions, traditions that Dad loved and would have been heartbroken if we didn't carry on. It is still hard... the other day "I'll be Home for Christmas" came on the radio and I had to pull the car over and just cry and realize that I will forever want my Daddy home.

So, my suggestion is to get through this first Christmas by doing something that you normally wouldn't have done... make it abit different this year - you can always go back to traditions when it becomes abit easier to handle. God Bless. Love, Sharon

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I had it pretty rough the year that Johnny died. He died on December 2nd. I was blindsided by his death. Actually just 5 years ago today I had gone and bought all new Christmas decorations. All of mine had stayed behind in Louisiana and he didn't have any either.

I was planning this big wonderful family Christmas for him. Something he had never had. I was going to put all of the anger at his kids for their treatment of him aside. I wanted it to be perfect. Then he was gone and I was totaly alone. My family was 2500 miles away. They really had no idea what I was going through or what it was doing to me.

That Christmas morning was so lonely. Not only was my heart aching for my Johnny but it was my first Christmas away from my family. I would have spent the day alone but I had my gift to Johnny to deliver.

His son was moving and his lease was up on Christmas eve. His wife had their son by C section on December 17th just 2 weeks after we lost Johnny. She needed help while Johnny's son was at work. They had so much going on and then she go an infection. They were not going to have much of a Christmas. No tree and no dinner and few presents.

I bought the groceries for the meal I had planned to have for Johnny. I cooked it all at my house and took it to their house and we had our Christmas together. I don't think I ate much if anything. I was having trouble swallowing past the lump in my chest all of the time. At least for part of the day I wasn't alone. My gift to Johnny and his son's family was that dinner. It was something I felt the need to do.

I had one more bad Christmas the next year but sense then I have managed to keep myself together. This will be the second year that I travel to Louisiana to spend the holidays with my family. It will be our second Chrismas without their dad who died in February 2006. There seems to always be a lot of missing people's spirits at our dinner tables.

It doesn't make it any easier but somehow it helps you through if you can find something to do for someone else who is in need. Maybe invite someone to have Dinner that would otherwise be alone or maybe call up a family member that you haven't talked to in a long time. It is alright if the tears fall and they will apprecate that you thought of them even in your time of sorrow.

My heart really goes out to you and Ry and so many here who are facing your first Christmas without your loved one. You will all be in my thoughts and prayers. Lillian

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No real advice other than to say be kind to yourself and do not feel bad for whatever you feel this Christmas. It is such a rough time without our loved ones.

Last Christmas I wished more than anything I could have just crawled into bed and woke up some time in January. We had a tradition where each year we were together Keith would pick the color theme for our tree and decorations and I'd go buy all the ornaments and lights and decorate the whole house in his theme colors. The first Xmas after he passed I refused to even acknowledge it was christmas, no lights, no stockings, nothing. A week before the holiday my family all came over and decorated my house with new colors and put up a tree.

I didn't want to have anything to do with it, and didn't even take it down and put the things away until almost April.

Some people might criticize me for being in denial, but I refuse to listen to that. I do what I do to get through each situation with whatever sanity I can retain. I know that Keith would want me to be happy, but I also know he'd be so patient and understanding with me and would allow me anything I needed to heal.

This year, I think I may be doing a little better. I plan on decorating, and I'm choosing his favorite colors to honor him. I'm doing some of the things we used to do together, but changing them up a bit to make new traditions but ones that still honor his memory and our love.

I wish you peace and God's blessings this holiday season. I hope it goes by gently for you.

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It takes some time to get it all figured out. That first year was so rough, and every holiday felt wrong. There was nothing to be done to make it right (short of raising the dead), and as we approach the second Christmas, new traditions are emerging.

What I'm saying is that it is a work in progress, and there are no pat answers to the question. Just take it one day at a time, and do NOT overextend yourself. Somehow, I think you will know how much of the usual holiday routine you can deal with. It's ok to tune out the rest of it!

~Karen

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Bobby,

I truly understand what you are going through. Maura and I used to sing those crazy carols too! Last Christmas she had been gone for only a month. It was almost impossible to bear. We just stayed in and had a quiet holiday with just my hubby, our son, and me. Hardly could put up at tree, let alone decorate the house which I normally do in a big way.

This year, I'm doing what Maura would have wanted me to do... Decorate, invite friends over, and celebrate just as we would have if she were here. I'm hoping it might be a little easier. Though I have my doubts.

Go easy on yourself, savor the memories of the many years you and your sis shared Christmas together, and know she's smiling down on you on Christmas Day and every day. Sending prayers for happier times ahead. Ellie

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I am so new to this too as I just lost my dad 3 1/2 weeks ago. I don't have any advice to give--but I know how hard these "milestone moments" are.

I can only say that Thanksgiving was easier than I expected because we didn't try to do everything "the same." We invented a few new traditions...we also included a few people who hadn't come to one of our dinners before (my cousin brought her new boyfriend...). Somehow, having new people at the table along with a few new traditions helped make the day easier.

That said, still working my way through the shock and numbness that I feel. Things are still so raw--so I also felt like my body was protecting me from feeling too much. Probably also made the day easier than I expected.

My thoughts are with you.

Best,

Leslie

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Thank you all so much for responding to my post. That meant a lot to me. My Mom called me last night and told me she heard "Blue Christmas" on the radio and thought about me and Beverly singing and she said it made her cry at first, then she started laughing. That made me feel good. I know all of this will take time and I intend to celebrate Christmas with my family this year and enjoy it, because you never know what will happen from one year to another. My parents are both getting close to 80, so there may be only a few Christmas' left to get together with them.

I had no idea there were so others on this board with ties to Louisiana. That is nice to see. I am sure you both agree the LSU must beat TENN. this weekend.

GEAUX TIGERS!!!

Love to all and Merry Christmas!

Bobby

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Hey Bobby, I'm a little late in responding but I am wondering the same thing. How? And even...WHY? Last year was rough with Daddy dying on 12/13 and now I'm not even interested in doing anything. My brother has 3 little kids and he'll have to come through for them, but I do not want to go up there with them. I love them all, but I am a frayed nerve just after today with 20 people in the house. Everyone kept asking me what we needed to eat and I could care less. Thank goodness for my Mom's sister or the caring people that came to my house would have had to order a pizza! I just kinda sat there and told her and my sister in law where stuff was. I'm sitting here thinking that I just want to be alone, but then I don't want to be alone. I need to go back to my house now, but I don't want to leave my Mom's things. Her blanket still smells like her. I haven't washed it yet even though I've washed just about everything else ( I clean when I'm upset :roll: ) When her doc told her she had to take a chemo break, she said she was going to have a great Christmas...she was right. Mine will suck, but I know that she is in a much better place and out of pain but I'm still just so sad.

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(((hug)))

I don't have advice. We just do the best we can. Be kind to yourself and I hope it passes gently for you and everyone of us who are grieving in whatever way. We are here for you.

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Like Katie, I don't have too much advice for you. I lost Dennis 10 days before Christmas. I hadn't done any shopping or decorating that year so Christmas was nothing more than a day of remembering for me and my family. We remembered what Christmas was really all about and we remembered how many wonderful years our family had together for Christmas. I was crushed from losing Dennis and was so very bitter about losing him. There was nothing that I wanted to celebrate. I just wanted to mourn and be angry with God for taking him from me. The years have brought a wee bit of closure for me. I'm no longer angry with God, although I don't think I'll ever completely understand. Now, I decorate the house, shop and enjoy family and friends...trying to remember how Dennis loved Christmas. But, I'm still always sad at this time of year and don't think Christmas will ever be the same as it was.

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