With the approaching holidays, I’ve been thinking about mental health and stress of the holidays.

Many of us do not especially enjoy the holidays. My brother died on New Year’s. We had my grandma’s (dad’s mom) funeral on Christmas Eve.

The loss of a loved one is often highlighted during the holidays when memories of past holidays crowd in and you can feel both happy and heartbroken in the same moment while you remember.

It is often a financial struggle for families, trying to purchase Christmas gifts on top of the regular expenses of everyday life.

How do you maintain your mental health during the holidays?

For me, I make sure I have a plan. For example, in 2020 on the first Christmas after losing Tom, I started a tradition of watching Scrooged (one of my favorite Christmas movies) on Christmas Eve. I’ve watched it every year since. I’ve also watched Trading Places, the new Christmas Story movie last year, and Christmas vacation. Just some lighthearted and funny entertainment comforts my heart.

That same year, I also put a Christmas tree for the first time in years. It is a simple little wooden pallet tree, but it looks super cute decorated, and I love turning off all the other lights and watching it at night.

If you struggle during the holidays, how do you work to make it through the time?

If you do not struggle, then please remember to give grace to those of us who do. We aren’t purposely being grumpy or Scrooge. We are just hurting.


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