- December 15, 2015
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Adhering to these traditions can be a great source of comfort and joy as we recreate those happy memories of our childhood or adult life. They can also be a source of stress and sorrow as life takes unexpected turns. We lose our grandparents and parents and things are not the same. A loved one is ill, in the hospital, or convalescing at home. There are new babies in the family to take joy in. Loved ones are married and now must share their holidays with two families. The time ticks away and you find yourself unprepared and unable to do all the things you have always done.
I learned this lesson three Christmases ago. My husband was not well and required a lot more of my time. At the same time my mom was in the hospital. I was so involved with the tasks of caregiving my holiday traditions were only adding to the stress in my life.
I had to step back. I had to evaluate what was really important. I had to decide what the holidays really meant to me. I had to let go of some of the things I had always done. I realized that I did not have to do everything myself. I discovered new traditions with my sister and niece that truly warmed my heart.
After 40 years of baking Christmas cookies in mass all alone. I became part of something new, something special, a new tradition that was more wonderful than anything I could have imagined. Together we bake the cookies, with my Grand Nephew assisting with the decoration. We laugh and share the experience together. I am no longer alone in the tradition. I am a part of something bigger and better.
Traditions evolve and change with time. That doesn’t mean the original tradition was bad or wrong. Embracing the changes will go a long way to a happier holiday experience. We can focus on the on what we are able to do instead of what we feel we are expected to do.
In doing so we can truly celebrate and be joyful in what is truly important. We can feel the gratitude of just being together with those we love.
The Crisis Planner
Holiday Gift Idea: Get your copy of “And Now What” Life Planner and Survivors Checklist at: http://www.amazon.com/Now-What-Panning-Survivors-Checklist/dp/1515228428