Dealing with Depression and Hardship during the Holidays
Christmas,  Mental Health

Holidays are HARD for those feeling loss or hardship

Dealing with depression and hardship during the holidays

Almost a year exactly before my mom passed away, she had a bad fall leaving her with a head injury and a broken femur. We almost lost her then but miraculously she pulled through. I am so thankful because it gave her more time with us. When she got out of physical rehab she came to stay with me. She believed that I was helping her, but neither one of us realized at the time that she was helping me by giving me more memories to hold on to now that she’s gone.

One night she and I were sitting in my living room in front of the Christmas tree having one of our usual talks. She held my hand and in her soft voice, she told me that her greatest joy in life was being a mom. That my brother Jeff and I were the two things that brought her complete happiness in her life and always made even the hardest times and darkest days better. She told me how the only thing she had ever wanted in life was to be a mom and that if she should pass away, she would go to Heaven knowing her life was well lived. If for no other reason than being a mom to us.

Truth be told, that night she said she didn’t think she would see another Christmas and sadly she was right. I suppose that it’s true what they say, that you have some sort of “feeling” about those things. But I didn’t believe her and just brushed it off. Telling her she would be around for many more Christmases. Not knowing then that the months and days left with her were fading fast. Sadly, we lost her that following October, just a week after my daughter’s first birthday.

So many times since that day, I have thought about that conversation. I just couldn’t understand how she could say her life was well lived when there were so many things left that she wished she could have done. How could Jeff and I, who definitely gave her a good bit of headaches over the years, could have made her feel so happy. Her life so complete.

I get it now…

I know now exactly what she was talking about that night. When I look at my own children I get it. They both give me headaches in their own ways. But these two are my whole world and for that my life is well lived.

As we head into another Christmas season, the absence of her is becoming more and more present. It’s been a little more than a year since she was called home. And although I know she is at peace and with the family she had longed to see again. The pain and emptiness without her still feels immense. I wish I could hug her again, like I hug my babies. Or hear her voice once more. But for now I will just hold the memories tight and talk about her often. I love you momma.

The holidays can be hard for those dealing with loss or hardships…

I struggle daily with feelings of grief but I’ve learned to manage them and to give myself a bit of a break. I’m allowed to be feeling what I’m feeling without being ashamed of it.

Have you lost someone close this past year? The holiday season can be very hard for those struggling with loss. Depression is real. But trust me you are not alone. Click here read my post on depression and the ways you can help yourself cope with whatever may be making you feel this way. It could be the death of a loved one, a divorce, loss of employment, financial hardship…no matter what the cause, depression is real. But it can be managed. And remember you are not alone!

16 Comments

  • Marie

    Such a beautiful post! Thank you for sharing! Your mom sounds like she was such a wonderful person! I’m sure she is still watching over you and is so proud of the mom you have become!

  • Smelly socks and garden peas

    We lost our 3rd baby at 20 weeks pregnant at the start of 2019. Last Christmas we spent the few days around Christmas with my sister in and my husband and her parents plus her husbands parents and sister and family. In three or four days no one said a word to me about how we must be missing boy3 or asked if I was OK. My older son, only just 8, pipped up at lunch on boxing day that he missed baby and he knew I was sad too. In a house full of grown ups who had forgotten or were scared or didn’t know what to say or who found it easier to ignore, it was my 8 yr old who was honest and sensitive enough to speak his feelings and acknowledge mine. He showed up the 8 adults outside our immediate family in just one sentence. In that moment I loved him more than ever.

    • conleydm2@outlook.com

      I can’t express how truly sorry I am that you suffered that loss. I pray that time heals your pain. I agree, my mother passed away in the middle of October, we went to our yearly Christmas Eve family dinner and not one person brought my mom up until I finally did. I know a lot of people worry that mentioning her will upset me, but what they don’t realize is that I’m upset regardless. And not mentioning her makes me feel like she’s being forgotten and that hurts more. So I hope somehow your holidays this year are filled with happiness, and that you speak of your precious baby often and know that he is your special little angel and he will always be a part of you. Lots of love for you and your family.

  • Lauren

    Thank you for sharing and I’m so sorry for your loss. For so many the holidays are difficult due to losing a loved one. It’s important to know they are not alone in their grief.

  • Abby

    I’m so sorry for your loss. This special time of year really does mama it difficult to not have memories of people we’ve lost. As sweet as the memories can be, they’re also painful.

  • Kari

    I love this line, ” I’m allowed to be feeling what I’m feeling without being ashamed of it.” So powerful, I wish more people could experience their feelings this way!

  • Bri

    Thank you for this post. So sorry for your loss. As happy as the holidays can be when you are grieving someone that was a huge part of them can be extremely difficult. Love to you and your family!

  • Danielle

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful post, grief is so difficult this time of year. I still find myself sobbing over loses from three years ago. Wishing you peace and happy holidays!

  • Noteworthy Mommy

    Christmas always brings back memories of loved ones who are no longer here to gather around the table and celebrate with. I am so happy you had the extra time with your mom and shared that special momement. This Thanksgiving and Christmas will be extra hard for everyone with the pandemic and social distancing.

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