Grief and the Holidays: What I’ve Noticed So Far

I can’t help but feel I’m doing this wrong.

Jack just asked me what his brothers’ “big gifts” this year are and I had to explain to him I didn’t do anything crazy expensive or awesome, I just picked something I got them to spotlight. I almost burst into tears. “That’s ok. That’s totally fine,” he responded with all the sincerity in the world. It was all I could do to buy them gifts this year, I didn’t even feel like doing that. It’s not ok really. Not even close. Parents make the holidays special for their kids, otherwise they are just normal days.

We went to a family Christmas party. It was nice. Delicious food was eaten, games were played, everyone was welcoming and sweet. When I got home, I felt sad.

I think I have most of the gifts I need for people bought, but I have yet to wrap anything and tomorrow is December 23rd. I just never feel like doing it.
I am very happy in my life normally, but these past few days and the coming days are not feeling special, magical or like I want to do them at all.

My anxiety is so much less than it ever was before. In general, I simply don’t let other people’s opinions bother me as much or my assumptions of their opinions. Additionally, I am a grieving widow with 3 kids, so if the most messy thing about me is the acne on my face, my lack of make up or my hair, then I feel like people will give me more than normal grace. I have a pass to be and look less than perfect, at least this year.

I haven’t said yes to anything I truly don’t want to do this season, but it still feels off.

Last year, I was a different kind of alone. My husband and I had split up, he had moved out and I did all of the things happily alone. I felt Empowered, Happy & Free for the first time in a long time and I enjoyed the holidays. This year is different. This year, doing all of the things alone is not fun. Not empowering. I am literally going through the motions hoping everything will turn out good for my kids.

I know it won’t be this way forever. We will find our way again.

I do find happy in all of the things, places, and people. I am forever grateful we are still even considered a part of Jess Sr.’s family and invited to things. I love spending time with the people I choose to spend time with. It’s just different. So different I cannot even describe it.

I do feel compelled to share that I am double grieving, if you will. I am grieving a huge change in my family dynamic on top of Jess Sr. being gone. A member of my family and I had a falling out this year which led to my family doing holiday celebrations differently than ever before. Separately. Now, not only will my kids not have their dad at Christmas for the first time ever, but we also do not have my big family gathering with all of their cousins that we have done their entire lives. Grieving a big change like that is hard and takes a lot of processing as well. Everything is so different.

Everything is so different, but not all bad. We have a few things we get to do this year that we never did before. We have a few new people who we are very close to that we get to create new memories and traditions with. We have a few old friends who we get to enjoy also. We are so thankful for our village and all of the people who Love on us.

It’s hard to do different things. Sometimes heartbreaking. Sometimes fun and exciting. At times, it’s hard to tell which one when you’re in the middle of it all. For now, we will keep on trucking and enjoy life as it comes.

Love well & Abundantly.

Enjoy your peeps.

Happy Holidays!


~Love & Light, Sarah

Published by SarahV

Life blog about me aiming to help anyone I can. I am 34, a mother of 3 boys, a widow, a lover, a peace seeker, a Soulrocker, an Auburn fan (War Eagle), a Yankees & Packers fan, a free spirit, an adventurer & so many other things. Some say I also have hippie tendencies. I hope I can spread love & light & help anyone who may find themselves in a situation I have been in before or am in now. I am always trying to better myself & follow my HeArT.

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