Author Topic: Christmas  (Read 544 times)


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« on: December 03, 2017, 12:54:49 PM »

For those that celebrate Christmas, I think it has to be one of the hardest holidays for the widowed.

Even if you and your spouse weren’t very “Christmassy”, it is still a time of family and friends and celebration.

For those with children, there is an additional sadness.  We try to fill the shoes of two parents when it is hard to even be one person. There are traditions that just seem too hard to maintain.

I write this post to offer my ideas, and what helped me but to also have you share what you want.  How do you think you can survive Christmas?

The first Christmas after my husband died, I hung his Christmas stocking and I wrote a letter to him and stuck it inside. I continue to do this each year.  Every year, I read what I’ve written in the past and then I add my new letter.  Mostly I tell him what has been happening and let him know that I’m OK.  It has become my Christmas tradition.

I don’t have young children at home, but think it might be nice a nice way for them to include their Dad/Mom in their holiday celebrations.

But what do you think will be meaningful to you and your family?


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Re: Christmas
« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2017, 11:28:20 AM »
This is my biggest struggle right now as Mike loved the holiday season and he passed just 11 days ago. I feel there is nothing to celebrate which makes it difficult with a 9 year old


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Re: Christmas
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2017, 03:22:55 PM »
Our first Christmas, we too wrote letters and put them in his stocking.  We still do each year and after 6 years the stocking is getting quite full!  I also remember NOT doing our usual traditions.  We did what we wanted without the normal obligations to family, which really helped us alot.  We just weren't ready to participate in the usual traditions.


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Re: Christmas
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2017, 05:54:14 PM »
The first Christmas we got out of dodge.  We opened presents Christmas eve and then got up and traveled all day on Christmas to visit friends living in Hawaii, eating pizza in the airport for breakfast which my then 6 year old thought was pretty cool.   They took care of us and we camped out on the beach and my child could just run around and play with my friend's son and all of the other kids on the beach.  It was the best decision I could have made at the time. We could "forget" for a while and my daughter could have some fun.

The second year I was a wreck.  My daughter went to see relatives with my parents and I went to a fancy bar in the afternoon, had a few glasses of wine and went to see two movies.  Not very festive but hey, it was all I had in me. 

One thing I will say is that I have always gotten the tree and put up some decorations even when my heart wasn't in it.  We still tag a tree the weekend after thanksgiving at the same place we did when my husband was alive and we have lots of ornaments from our lives and travels together and we reminisce and I tell her stories (she's now 10) about those times while we decorate the tree.  We also celebrate secular Hanukkah because when my husband was dying we didn't know if he'd make it to CHristmas so we started a tradition of celebrating Hanukkah, too.  We still do this now years later.  We invite friends over during the week and make latkes.  My daughter really clings to this tradition so I have kept it up for her. 

I'm remarried now to another widower.  This will be our first Christmas here as a family and I have no intention of changing any of those traditions.  My daughter won't be "little" much longer and I cherish these things and this time of year now for the way in which we can consciously remember the past and her Dad and celebrate him, too.  It took me some time to get to this point, though. 


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Re: Christmas
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2017, 04:20:50 PM »
Our first Christmas we had to not do things traditionally at all. We picked and chose the celebrations we wanted to participate in. We did not host, rather I asked my sisters to. Then we traveled the next day. We have never ever left home around the holidays ever. We had always just stayed home and hosted a bunch of celebrations. We also changed how we decorated our tree and we took a break from Hanukkah since my husband was Jewish.