As I look at the photographs hanging on the “family picture” wall, I can’t help but remember the Christmases of the past.  There was so much anticipation and preparation for the family get-togethers’, the food, gift giving, and of course, the laughs.  So many memories of love and good times.

Things were so different back then.  The children were young and full of innocence and wonder. The adults were young and healthy and vibrant.

Slowly, things changed.  Vitality and enthusiasm was replaced with sorrow and sadness, for many of our loved ones were no longer with us to share in the celebration.

“How do we go on?”

It wasn’t easy, that’s for sure.  There was definitely a void in our lives and an overarching feeling that things would never be the same.

While we tried to continue certain traditions and rituals of the past, we had to be honest.  Things were different. We ached with sorrow; a pain deeply rooted in our hearts.

Again, we questioned, “how do we go on?”

We did go on. We continued on because cherished the moments that we shared together. It was difficult and different without the presence of our loved ones who had passed, however there was comfort in having each other. Things had changed, however the memories and the everlasting love was still there.

It is never easy to lose a loved one and the Christmas season seems to bring out our emotions and sentiments about days gone by.  Sometimes feelings are so deep, we may find it hard to envision a bright future.

“Time heals all wounds” they say.  While this is true, it will take some active effort to feel the delight and pleasure of the holiday season.

What to do?

Enjoy the simple things like a cup of coffee with a friend.  Find warmth and comfort in the lights of the season for they offer a ray of hope and shine in memory of those no longer with us.  Take time, time to spend on anything you enjoy.  Make every effort to get together with family and close friends.

If you are feeling sad and alone, do something helpful for someone else. It will bring you a joy that will fill your heart with love and warmth.  Show kindness and compassion to yourself and to others.  Reach out and lend a helping hand.  Look around and find the positive in what surrounds you.  There will be so much there.

I wish you all peace, health and happiness this holiday season.  Cherish your memories, enjoy each day and have hope for the future.

~ Lisa