The Holiday Effect


As another holiday is upon us, I can’t help but be reminded, of how difficult a time it is for many people. Ask anyone, and you will hear entirely different accounts of why they struggle around holidays from each person.

A common theme, is missing family or friends. Being alone, when everyone else has somewhere to go or someone to be with. I get that, for me, my family lives all over the map. When we get together, rarely, is it over a traditional holiday. It’s logistics more than anything. If you were to ask, we would all, like nothing more ,than spending quality time together. Is it going to happen any time soon? The answer is no. We just make up for it when we do get to be together.

For those of us, looking from the outside in, at all the other people having “fun” I will let you in, on a rarely shared fact. Not everyone will be having a great time. You can feel more alone in a room full of people than when you are actually alone. There is a reason why, when all those happy photos that are posted on line, are being taken, someone is invariably saying SMILE. That is a prompt, because not everyone is feeling like smiling.

If you base how your day should play out, on what everything looks like, you just might be short changing yourself. It’s sometimes an obstacle course to pull off the perfect holiday. I can say the usual, meet with friends, serve at a neighbourhood outreach centre. Find a good movie on Netflix, make a good size bowl of buttery popcorn, and settle in and escape in the telling of the story. More than that though, give yourself permission to feel good.

There are people, that actually prefer to be alone, rather than adding to the difficulty of the day, by surrounding themselves with people. There is no wrong decision, as each is individual.
Holidays might be tough, but are you making it tougher than you need to?

If you will feel better after a good cry, then grab the Kleenex and let the tears flow. It might be good to remember, as you put things in perspective, while wiping the freshly created tear on your cheek,  that someone somewhere, is having their worst day ever, while others are having their very best day, for most of us though, we sit somewhere comfortably in the middle.

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