1. Accept where you’re at
And that’s not likely to be at the top of your game. Grief is a tricky beast: You may be ok one minute and sobbing the next. Do what you feel you are capable of; cancel what is too painful.
2. Take breathers
It’s normal to feel alone and disconnected in the middle of a crowded room, or around a table where someone you love is conspicuously absent. Take a breather if you need to — leaning on those you most trust — and only then attempt to re-engage.
3. Say their name
People don’t know what to say or are afraid they will hurt you by talking about your loss. Show them it’s ok — more than ok, a way of paying their respects. Lead by example, and say their name. The festive seasons is about reflecting on the memories you cherish most. In that way, your loved one will not be absent from the holiday table.
4. Try something different
Maintaining a few long-held family traditions is a tried-and-true way to honor your loved one. But so, too, is doing something new. Whatever feels right to you, even if this changes at the last minute, is OK.
5. Take care of yourself
When you’re grieving, self-care can be a life raft. Extra sleep, a walk in the crisp air, a warm bath, a call to a friend …
May you find moments of peace this holiday season.