While many approach the holiday season with joy and excitement, that’s not true for all. If you’ve experienced a loss or continual disappointment when trying to have a baby, this time of year might serve as a reminder of what you don’t have, rather than what you do. And that’s OK. Try to give yourself space to understand your emotions, and try to build the kind of holiday that will keep you comfortable. Here are some suggestions.
Dos and Don’ts
If you aren’t up for it, avoid gatherings where there will be children and/or pregnant moms. If you would still like to partake in a family tradition, perhaps show up right before the meal starts rather than the night before.
Have a plan for what you will say when people ask why you’re not participating or if you seem to not be in the holiday spirit. Decide if you want to be vague or more specific, and don’t feel like you need to share too many details. A simple “It’s too painful for me right now because of something I’m going through” should suffice.
Consider planning a trip away for just you and your partner. Rather than try to balance all of the holiday activities and try to feel excited or joyful, use the opportunity to escape for a while. Cozy up by the fireside at a cabin in the mountains, visit the tropics, or check out a locale you’ve always wanted to explore.
Even if you can’t get away, seek out the things that really do bring you joy, that you can lose yourself in. Whether it’s cooking, going for a long walk, finding one of your lost hobbies like horseback riding, or buying that juicy novel and drinking some hot cocoa under a blanket. Make the holiday about what you want to do.
Find ways to help others in need. Everyone is going through something, and everyone has struggles. If you can help alleviate someone else’s, you’ll feel a spark of happiness even on the dark days.
Finding a way through the holiday season can be tougher than you think. For more ideas on how to navigate, give us a call at 717-747-3099 or click here to schedule an appointment.
Dr. Melanie Ochalski
P.S. Looking for hope this holiday season? Visit this page to download a free copy of our book, 10 Stories of Hope.