Celebrating The Holidays After The Death Of A Loved One Isn't Easy, But It's Possible

If someone you love recently passed away, you might find the coming month to be more difficult than usual. Celebrating the holidays after the death of a loved one is no easy task, nor does it get easier. It's difficult to lose somebody you love, and getting over their passing is not a single action, but rather, a process (and an unending one at that). However, that being said, don't lose hope. Sorrow eventually passes, and as implausible as it may seem now, you will learn to cope with the death of your loved one.

But the holidays can still be exceptionally tough. While everybody deals with grief in their own individual way, here are five suggestions for making it through this time of year. Don't be discouraged if you don't connect to each and every one of these ideas. Instead, focus on which points sound the most appealing to you. From spending time with friends to volunteering at a local charity, all of these suggestions have their own form of healing tied in with them.

It's hard to lose someone. It can certainly feel like it's breaking you, but that doesn't mean you're not capable of putting the pieces back together. Enjoy your holidays this year, even if they're spent in a way that's not usual for you.

1. Leave town for the holidays

Sometimes, getting out of town can be a huge help if you find yourself running into too many memories of your loved one, especially if you're still in the early stages of mourning. Surround yourself with a new setting that will help you disengage from the hardship at hand, and allow you to actually enjoy the spirit of the holidays.

2. Volunteer at a charity during your time off

Instead of spending the holidays looking inward and feeling upset, re-shift your focus outward. Focusing on those who are even less fortunate than you can really help put things into perspective, and even more importantly, it simply feels good to do something kind for someone else... which could be exactly the kind of healing you need when you're grieving the passing away of a loved one.

3. Spend the holidays with someone who has also lost somebody

I say this not so that you will pair up with a friend and spend the evenings in despair together, but rather, so that you'll realize you're not the only one going through feelings of loneliness. Often it is not the person with the perfect life who will provide you with the most help and comfort, but rather, the person who actually knows what it feels like to be sad.

4. Celebrate the life of your loved one

It can be hard to stop mourning, but taking some time to positively reflect on the life lived by your loved one is also an important step in the recovery process. If you really take a moment to think about it, your loved one would likely not want you to be in tears over their passing. Instead, they would want you to both remember them and celebrate them for all the impact they had on your life.

5. Surround yourself with friends

Your friends are a wonderful resource for when you start to feel upset. While you might not have your loved one anymore, you still have people on this earth who care about you. Blood doesn't make a family — love does. What's the opposite of sorrow? Happiness. And what can make one happy? Loving your friends, and receiving their love in return.

Images: Pexels; foolfillment, jen light, Henrick Thorn, Linzi/Flickr