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Finding the Christmas Spirit after the Loss of a Spouse

Dealing with the holidays after the loss of a loved one isn’t easy for anyone.  Believe me, I know.  I used to be the kind of woman who had all of her Christmas shopping done by the beginning of October and her decorations up during Thanksgiving weekend.  I was so together that anything that needed to be mailed to family out of state was packed up and at the post office no later than December 10th in order to avoid the holiday rush.  And I was so excited for Christmas that I couldn’t narrow down my cookie selection so I made them all, cheerfully placing them in tins and delivering them to my neighbors with a smile and a “Merry Christmas!”

But in 2007, all of that changed.

Father’s Day: An Emotional Day When You’re Celebrating Without A Father

Father’s Day is not what it used to be.  I’ve gotten used to many of the milestones I have faced since I became a widow, almost 4 years ago.  I can jolly us through Christmas and be thankful on Thanksgiving.  I can even look at his birthday as a celebration of his life.  But Father’s Day is a day devoted to celebrating fathers.  And the fact that my kids have lost theirs…well…that can’t be glossed over.

Assess, Ask and Act: How You Can Support Someone Through Loss and Transition

Trying to support a friend or family member while they are going through a major life transition can be a very helpless feeling.  We don’t know what to do, what to say, or how to act.  Are we being supportive enough?  Are we too much “in their business”?  I haven’t heard from her in awhile…does that mean she wants me to leave her alone?

My “major life transition” happened four years ago when I became a widow.  Since then, I have realized that the need for support doesn’t just happen when someone dies:  Divorce, job loss, infertility…so many things can completely change the scope or our lives.  And in fact, that’s what loss is:  Losing the life you thought you were going to have.