Getting through the challenges of the first long year

Before your loss you probably looked forward with anticipation to the many holidays and causes for celebration throughout the year.

Now you might be filled with dread at the thought of having to endure another event where you feel anything but celebratory. Everything is different now and you need to recognize that what you feel in any given moment is your truth for that moment.  Allow it.  Accept it. Conflicting emotions will accompany you to these events like a shadow.

Try not to put yourself under any undo stress by expecting too much. You probably won’t get through it unscathed, but you will survive.  You will most likely find yourself marking the year in firsts; the first Valentine’s Day, Easter, Fourth of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, your child’s birthday, your child’s death day and on and on. Give yourself permission to participate or not participate, celebrate or not celebrate, decorate or not decorate. There will always be next year. Gradually you will become more capable of experiencing the joys you once took for granted. Till then, know that no one expects you to carry on as usual. After all, nothing is ‘as usual’ now.

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