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Old 12-05-2012, 12:11 PM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 65,253,264 times
Reputation: 22271

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
Get an ipod thing, download some non-Christmas music, something that doesn't provoke any memories, emotions, etc, and get some really good headphones, ones that block out any background noises. Play that when sentimental Christmas music comes on. think of it as an "emergency" device.

My mother died the day before Thanksgiving....it was 20 years ago, but still hurts. all that Christmas music still triggers memories of her untimely death. Just find ways to cope......

I wish that worn-tired suggestion of volunteering in a soup kitchen would drop! Such places would make one even more depressed. The idea to go stare at "those less fortunate" is somehow sick, in my opinion. But I do like the idea of going somewhere new, so you don't have past memory triggers, such as a new church, etc. Remember, the first holiday after the death of a loved one is the hardest. then, well....you get used to it....hang in there!
Interesting that you said you wished the suggestion about volunteering for a soup kitchen would be "dropped." This just points out how what one person finds meaningful and helpful another finds depressing.

I have several friends who have become very active in such things as Meals on Wheels and Soup Kitchens after their spouses died, as they truly enjoyed feeling they were "giving back" and involved in an activity that mattered.

So it all depends on the individual . . . and not every suggestion is going to be the right one for any one particular person. It's a little harsh to make a blanket statement, tho, don't you think? and say that the suggestion "ought to be dropped" just b/c you personally would not find it meaningful.
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:30 PM
 
Location: New York State, USA
142 posts, read 202,849 times
Reputation: 173
Quote:
Originally Posted by tamiznluv View Post
That is absolutely wonderful, taulery. God sent YOU to that man to give him comfort and help yourself at the same time. That man will never forget the kind stranger whom he shared with last night.

As soon as I posted on another berevement site because IDK this place exsisted or maybe it didn't at that particular moment, I was washed with feeling so good about trying to help another person who was grieving like myself. I didn't "connect" with those people and didn't try to either.

I betcha all of us are made feeling a tad better at least, by sharing with each other here. It's almost "magical" in here, with us making the "magic" for each other.

That was so awesome of you last night, taulery. (((HUGS)))

Thank you.

I can't describe my feelings. That man and I talked for a little over an hour. He cried more than I did. He described watching science shows about electricity and the flickers, like the old days when you turn off the TV and the screen is still bright and the then glows to the point in the middle, and then vanishes.

That's exactly what I felt, too, seeing my Mom slip away. And then my cousin dies so suddenly. And now this man's son, what a tragic way he died (I won't say). But her is his father, still using his son's cell phone, and telling me of how they talked about buying the new nest edition. And then he cried again. I honestly felt as though all the souls that had gone before from my life were now rallying behind me, reaching through me, and listening, with my arms reached out slightly. Yes, I hugged him, twice. We cried together.

This reminds me of the Christmases at the cancer hospital, where everyone there knows, but are all filled with kindness and smiles. I think I need to go there tomorrow.
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Old 12-05-2012, 06:34 PM
 
Location: New York State, USA
142 posts, read 202,849 times
Reputation: 173
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big George View Post
Why are you trying to go through the holidays without crying? This is part of the grief cycle that you have to pass through, and suppressing it will cause bigger problems down the road.

Accept and own the tears, accept and own the feelings driving them, and slog your way through. It will get better over time.

I'm seeing this and feeling it more each day. Accepting the grief, yes, and being in it, passing through it. Yes, thank you.
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Old 12-07-2012, 08:29 AM
 
Location: NoVa
18,434 posts, read 28,520,978 times
Reputation: 19578
I did something different, mainly because of my kids. My mother died on Christmas Eve 12 years ago. The kids were 3 and 5 and boy was it tough trying to keep it together for them. Christmas morning I had to be there for them and hold it together and a little later I had to hold it together to tell my grandma her daughter died.

My season starts around the end of October. I have to make it through Thanksgiving, my dads bday, my bday, (which is today!!) my moms death day, Christmas, new Years, my dads death day, my moms bday, grandmas death day and bday. This ends the beginning of April.

Most years I am a complete mess for that whole season. What I began to do is have a cake for Christmas eve, the day of my moms passing. I made her favorite, carrot cake with cream cheese icing. It celebrated her homecoming, instead of her dying. I bought a very big and ornate angel ornament which hangs near the top of the tree every year, and it is for my mom.

Today I am celebrating yet another birthday without my parents, and it has been a long time. 1995 for my dad, and 2000 for my mom. I guess it gets easier through the years.

Last year I did very well, and this year I am doing pretty good. I really think it makes a huge difference in how you are in your own life from day to day; year to year.

Back in the day I was a depressed person going through a bad marriage and a tough life. I was facing daily depression just in general. When the season came, it was just horrid. Now my life is happy, and I get through much easier. Oh I am not going to sit here and tell you that tears aren't shed, because they are.

I got through Thanksgiving and I was happy. I spent it with wonderful people and the man I love. I got through my dads birthday last Friday very well, every time I thought of him, the wonderful memories flooded in.

The funny thing is my birthday and Valentines day are hard for me. My father truly celebrated me on those days. I guess we all have our ways to cope...

Hope you all have a Merry Christmas!
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Old 12-07-2012, 05:13 PM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
22,706 posts, read 21,750,727 times
Reputation: 27757
Quote:
Originally Posted by taulery View Post
Thank you.

I can't describe my feelings. That man and I talked for a little over an hour. He cried more than I did. He described watching science shows about electricity and the flickers, like the old days when you turn off the TV and the screen is still bright and the then glows to the point in the middle, and then vanishes.

That's exactly what I felt, too, seeing my Mom slip away. And then my cousin dies so suddenly. And now this man's son, what a tragic way he died (I won't say). But her is his father, still using his son's cell phone, and telling me of how they talked about buying the new nest edition. And then he cried again. I honestly felt as though all the souls that had gone before from my life were now rallying behind me, reaching through me, and listening, with my arms reached out slightly. Yes, I hugged him, twice. We cried together.

This reminds me of the Christmases at the cancer hospital, where everyone there knows, but are all filled with kindness and smiles. I think I need to go there tomorrow.
It's moments like this that remind me of why I'm still here.
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Old 12-08-2012, 12:39 AM
 
Location: 900 miles from my home in 80814
4,669 posts, read 6,739,165 times
Reputation: 7078
Pikantari, Happy Birthday!!!!! Another Sag!

I have the same things. I used to get worked up as soon as Halloween rolled around because I had Halloween, dh's bd 11/03, Thanksgiving, my birthday 12/10 (think my name gives that away), 12/19 granddaughter, 12/23 grandfather died, Christmas, and 12/30 when my mom died. Now I add 10/26, the day dh died. Fortunately, all the rest of the family birthdays (4 kids, 6 grandkids, sil, bil, etc) and anniversaries--wedding and death--fall spaced out throughout the year. But, I hate October - December.

I've been so slow about Christmas shopping this year. I'm just not into it. It seems like yesterday it was Halloween, and now it's two weeks to Christmas. The time flew by and I don't know where it went...
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Old 12-08-2012, 06:29 AM
 
1,638 posts, read 2,471,026 times
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I won't make it through this holiday season without crying, and I'm not trying to! I think it's perfectly normal and I try to let it out when I need to.

However, I'm really looking forward to Christmas with my family. Since I live out of state, I look forward to going home and helping my father feel "whole" again. In a way, I feel like he leans on me a lot since losing my stepmother 3 months ago (basically my mother, was in my life since I was 4), and I feel happy knowing I can bring some comfort to my father. Christmas this year is almost feeling more meaningful, and on Thanksgiving we had a huge dinner as usual and truly enjoyed everyone's company.

A few times her death was brought up and how hard it was, but I usually moved on from that conversation as I knew that's not what she would want. I remember her every day, sometimes I think for hours, but she was big on not letting life get us down. My view on her death is that she has continued on, and we are just stuck behind waiting for however long we must. I ache most for my father, who lost his second marriage after only a few years, a woman who was clearly the love of his life. Also, my step siblings who lost their mom at a young age. However, it's AMAZING how we've come together as a family to support each other.

In a way, I feel she's made me "strong" to support my father in this hard time, and I will be happy to oblige her.
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Weston, FL and Vero Beach, Fl
2,945 posts, read 11,936,013 times
Reputation: 2057
Stay away from the malls and other stores. Do your holiday shopping online. This limits exposure. Keep the radio turned off and either listen to a DVD selection of non holiday music or a book. Do not watch TV instead rent movies. Do get out of the house and take long walks - if you have a dog all the better.

Meet up with friends and family. If you prefer alone time, then get in your car and explore, work on a hobby, exercise, read, etc.

The depression/sadness may not go away entirely, but doing some or all of the above will ease the pain. Been there done that. Here is a cyber hug to all ((((hug))))
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
31,165 posts, read 57,288,199 times
Reputation: 52030
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcy1210 View Post
I've been so slow about Christmas shopping this year. I'm just not into it. It seems like yesterday it was Halloween, and now it's two weeks to Christmas. The time flew by and I don't know where it went...
I'm right there with you. As much as I really wasn't into the holidays last year, two months after my husband died, I am even more not into them this year. Here it is 2 weeks before Christmas, and I haven't done anything other than pick up a few gifts and put a wreath on the front door. I'm completely indifferent, which has never happened to me before.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:50 AM
 
3,764 posts, read 7,199,178 times
Reputation: 4005
My mother died on Christmas & yearly I feel the sadness before I even realize once again what it is. And it's been 30+ years! Sniff!

I have found "adopting" kids for whom to buy toys really helps me focus outward. It helps me to feel life goes on & the unbroken circle of it all.
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