Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Grief and The Holidays

Grief and The Holidays

            As the holidays approach, the grief from the loss of a loved one can become overwhelming because of family traditions, family gatherings, new experiences and the stress and anxiety already associated with holidays. It is completely normal to feel overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, restless and guilty. There are several other emotions or experiences people may encounter. To help cope with these and others, there are several suggestions we can make to help ease the feelings of grief.

1.      Set boundaries on your expectations and other’s expectations.
2.      Have a meeting or discussion with family/friends about the holiday plans.
3.      Rehearse how you will respond to difficult situations beforehand.
4.      Observe the day in a way that has meaning for you.
5.      Make the holiday an opportunity for healing. A day for renewal of your physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
6.      Be flexible.
7.      Recreate or change traditions. Start something new.
8.      Bring special touches of your loved one to the holiday.
9.      Focus on the concept of gifts/ gift giving. Buy a gift for yourself as well as others.
a.       What is the gift you were given by your loved one?
b.      What did they teach you about life/living?
c.       What positive qualities did they bring out in you?
d.      What was their purpose for being in your life?
10.  Have a plan. 

Help us share, educate, and reach out by subscribing to our blog and suggesting it to friends who will spread our message, Hospice of Southern Illinois is here to teach you what hospice is, what we are about, and what we can do for you and your loved ones! No one has to go through the dying process alone. Hospice of Southern Illinois can help!

Live well, laugh often, and love much,
Christine Juehne
Hospice of Southern Illinois
Community Education

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My name is Christine Juehne, and I have worked as a community educator for four years at Hospice of Southern Illinois, a member of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO). I will be your hospice guru answering questions, covering stories, and informing you about all hospice topics. I welcome you to our blog! Follow our journey to stay committed to our mission, enhance the quality of life for individuals and their loved ones touched by a terminal illness! If you have further questions about Hospice of Southern Illinois or general hospice questions please feel free to call 618-235-1703 or e-mail me at cjuehne@hospice.org!

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