Fly with the Phoenix

Help! It’s the holidays!

My husband, daughter and I traveled to Indianapolis for Thanksgiving weekend and enjoyed the restaurants, cultural attractions and shopping there. When we returned Sunday evening, I turned the car to drive up our street and was greeted with the sight of almost every house glowing in Christmas lights. Then it hit me–BAM!–the holidays are here. Yet, I’m feeling more humdrum than holly-jolly, and I suspect that I’m not alone in that emotion.It started badly on Thanksgiving morning with me pining for the old days, moving into grieving for my deceased parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, then concluding with a fit of crying and arguing. Winter holidays are difficult for those of us dealing with family transitions. For those living with loss due to death, the holes left in our lives due to that passing seem deeper during this time of year. For families in transition because of divorce, it hurts to be separated from children and people–such as former in-laws–we cared for at one time. The holidays can accentuate that hurt. Add financial stress due to career transitions/job loss and it’s easy to see why the holidays can be a source of pain to people.

I know I’m not unique as a divorced mother whose parents are deceased and who struggles with the bittersweet side of the holidays, so if I’m hurting, I would imagine others are as well. That’s why I’d like to explore here the subject of transitional holidays in the hope that some insight might be shared with readers dealing with changes in their lives and families. This month, Fly with the Phoenix will explore how to survive–even celebrate–winter holidays if you are grieving the loss of a loved one, dealing with family changes due to divorce or separation, or are looking at the pending new year from the unemployment line. Take heart, folks–we’ll get through this together! God willing, we also will find the ways to appreciate what we have, the foremost gift being His grace and peace.

I hope some of you will share your thoughts or tips about past or present holiday challenges because those experiences might be useful to people this year. Feel free to leave a comment.



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