G’day! Chloe here!
In case you missed the blog where I introduced myself, I’m Australian so I can say G’day, and it has the correct accent and just the right amount of cheese. I am excited to share with you on the blog today! We’re talking about holidays and mental health.
Holidays are interesting. They can stir up feelings of nostalgia and a longing for our childhood where often things were more simple and easy. It could also bring up not fun childhood memories and create anxiety about going home, or not going home and facing disappointed family members. Then some of us experience the loneliness of not having family to return to, or a lacking of time off and financial means to return home.
Then there is the traffic, the crazy drivers who don’t use indicators, the jam packed airports where everyone is stressed and hustling and anxious about missing their flight. Just driving to the grocery store can feel overwhelming!
And the shopping! The budget that doesn’t exist, the ever growing list of people you’re obligated to buy a gift for. (And it needs to be a gift they’ll actually like, right?!) Making sure you didn’t forget anyone and the random boxes of chocolates you buy just in case someone pops over to say Merry Christmas with a gift, you’re ready!
What about the parties? It’s supposed to be fun, and cheery but its dark out and you would rather be in your cozies by the fire with Netflix than out in the cold, traffic filled night in your cute dress that’s hidden under the giant coat you’re wearing to stay warm, am I right?
Now, don’t get me wrong. I LOVE the holidays. The fullness of the season, the joy that hangs in the air, the lights and the trees, and the moments of connection with those that we love. The cute Christmas cards that arrive in the mail, the cheerful exchanges with your neighbors and friends, holiday traditions that make you feel warm and fuzzy! Though I typically appreciate Christmas by the pool or BBQing on the beach, this cold weather holiday also has it’s perks!
Holidays are just... interesting. There is so much happening around us, and we’re focused on all the things we need to do and that’s hard enough to manage AND then to be aware of what we’re feeling! Geez! I’m tired just thinking about it all! Yet this is often the reality we are in. It’s not easy. And that’s okay.
My hope is that during this holiday season, whatever your holiday season looks like, you’ll remember to stop, take a deep breath, feel the feels and then keep going. Straddle the line and experience the both/and of your emotions. The overflowing joy of being with your family, and the feelings of disappointment that it’s not all you hoped it would be. The deep sadness that you’re alone this holiday season and the reality that you’re also going to be okay. If you’re just too tired, don’t go to all the parties. Don’t feel pressured to buy gifts for your 3rd cousin or sisters boyfriend. Let’s be brave and tell our families that we won’t be able to make it to family dinner this year if it’s just too much! Don’t get swept up in the consumerism culture of the holiday but stop and think about what we want our holiday to look like, then make it happen!
Let’s give ourselves grace and room to breathe this holiday season. Let’s lean on each other, do our best and leave the things we can’t change under the Christmas tree. Girl, you can do hard things.
with love and flowers,
Chloe & the PP Squad