The holidays can be a time of fun and love and laughter and family. Of slowing down and enjoying time with friends. But for many people, this time of year can also bring up profound feelings of sadness and loneliness. You might be mourning for something you’ve never had, or for something you once did, or for an idea in your head of how the holidays should look. We get inundated with images of families around a fireplace, everyone smiling and hugging, mugs of hot cocoa in hand. Images of couples ice skating, and proposals under the mistletoe. If you’re having a holiday season like that, that’s a beautiful gift in itself and I hope you soak in every moment of joy. But if you’re feeling alone, or struggling with family dynamics, or missing a person you can no longer hug but only remember, my heart truly goes out to you. And I just wanted to reassure you that you are not alone.
If you’re in pain, just open to it. Fighting it will make it worse, kind of like trying to hold your breath until January 2nd. You don’t have to buy into the idea that everyone is living in a Norman Rockwell painting. Many people are living in quiet agony, even though things may look perfect on the outside. I believe we should all open up about our pain when we’re going through it. I know we’re encouraged to display our highlight reel all the time, but giving people a peek behind the curtain on your darker days can also be a gift. It’s the gift of knowing we are never alone. We will all face pain at some point or another, and we can be here for each other. We don’t have to make things look perfect. Sometimes, we can just cry, and that’s the most honest, perfect, and beautiful offering imaginable. If I could, I’d offer you my shoulder if you need a good cry. Short of that, I offer you my love. Ally