Author Topic: It is Christmas Time .. again and how do we cope with that alone feeling etc.  (Read 385 times)

Sunshine Meadows

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On a recent thread Fiz mentioned missing out on turkey and it reminded my how much I miss roast dinners the way my Mum and later my sisters made.


I am all over the place this year, spending too much money on presents and frilly food. I miss my Mum so much at the moment. She never got to see me in my life in the Midlands.  I think she would be proud of me want to help and discuss plans for the house and garden. I miss Dad too I mean he would drink too much and get horrid but he would also dance and sing his silly songs.


It was my birthday in December and I had a meandering day, I mean it was good because of the things it was not and not the things it was. It is nice that I did not have to smile and thank anyone for talc and handcream lol.


Anyway how are you doing?


Fiz

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 :f_hug:


Thank you sunshine for this catch up thread.


I'm struggling with fatigue/myalgia that often leaves me crying but it's not depression, it's just natural reaction to physical illness. I am lonely and not looking forward to Christmas alone, I aim to pretend to myself that it's a normal day and hope I manage it. It's not as if I go anywhere or see anyone usually so it's daft to differentiate. I guess it's that FOMO when you imagine all the happy family gatherings everywhere else when there are in fact numerous people on their own for Christmas day.


I'm struggling with my dog and have had fleeting thoughts about rehoming her as even if she leans on me my body aches and can't cope with the strain and she has so much energy and she's willful in some ways and destructive still.


My dd and family have been here for 24 hours and I have collapsed on the sofa but need to get up, clear up the kitchen and tidy toys away. I have a date with temazepam tonight!


I'm sorry you're missing your parents acutely sunshine. I think it comes in waves doesn't it? Heightened by Christmas? I rarely miss my father now but still pine for my mother in waves. 16 years on and it still hurts.

Sunshine Meadows

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 :f_hug: thank you.


I think pretending it is a normal day is a good idea, however there are things we can only have or do at this time of year so we are getting Christmas party food to eat whenever we like. I get what you mean about fear of missing out, it is different for me because up until last year Mr Sunshine always worked Christmas. Also while he has a grown up daughter whom I love she doesnot do Christmas either. It must be so different to be used to children getting their first bikes, big teddy bears and computer games etc.


As to your dog, they can be such a comfort when they are grown up and older but for the first two years they are so much energy and naughtiness. Bran seemed addicted to breaking tv remotes and Annie took over a year and a half to fully house train. I wonder about rehoming Annie sometimes because she is not getting the out and about life our previous dogs had and she is affected by my maybe tomorrow, next week next year, attitude. Getting outside help looks to make a difference though.  We do what we can when we can :big_hugs:


Yes and there is the bombshell ricocheting pain and tiredness of being around people especially when pretending to be okay  :heart:


You are right it comes in waves, and I think worse this year in part to my Mum's sister and only real aunt who cared for me as an adult becoming 80 in Dec.






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« Last Edit: 19 Dec 2021 03:31PM by Sunshine Meadows »

Sunny Clouds

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When I was a child, Christmas Eve was a ritual.

The day involved food preparation including home-made stuffing mix, led by my mother and grandmother, and putting up decorations, led by my father.  Both parents managed to maintain an air of leaving the other gender's task to them and not interfering, whilst actually helping out.

There were lots of jokes and there was music on the wireless and television.

Up to the end of my mother's life, I was helping with the food prep and decoration even though I no longer lived with them, then took over after she died.  That all went out of the window when my father went into care, when I visited him but just did my own thing food-wise.

I feel lonely at Christmas, but there are also lovely moments of reaching out to neighbours.  I currently have Christmas decorations outside my house as well as outside the neighbours' house, put up by them.

It was suggested to me to attend a local interfaith group's Christmas Day meal and activities, but I chickened out.  I told myself that it was because I thought it might be cancelled at the last minute, but actually it's because it's years since I went to any 'party' or 'meal event' and it feels too emotionally demanding.

For me the toughest Christmas was the first after Dad died, but it was bearable.

I need to write two more cards before I go to bed.  I hate writing cards.  I love the people I send them to, I just never know what to write or what sort of card to send to whom.  It doesn't help that my father had a multi-faceted career and used to get lots of official cards and cards from committee members etc.  I'm not joking when I say hundreds.  We used to put two staples in the top rear corners and hang them on strings round the walls in rooms and corridors.  Madness.  I value more a few cards from people close to me, including the annual exchange with friends that aren't coping with phone calls, different ones in different years.  Messages like "Still thinking of you.  I'd love to hear from you, but only when you're ready."
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Fiz

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I only have one Christmas card, from my daughter, which she posted despite knowing she'd be here last Saturday but it was so lovely to receive. I'll be surprised if I receive more. I sometimes get one from my sister, usually late  :f_laugh:


I listened to the church's carol service online yesterday and really felt that I need to concentrate on Christ's birth rather than who I am with on Christmas Day this year. As a Christian, that really is what it should be about really but the recent centuries have made it into something else entirely. It's okay to feel sad though because I live in the shadow of these centuries.


I was attending a Christmas craft thing today which a friend was organising. She's a church minister and is a chaplain at a mental health unit. It was only four of us (including her) who couldn't make the actual event so I had thought it would go ahead in masks but she phoned yesterday and said her church have moved their services outside due to Omicron and aren't meeting indoors so it's off. My daughter didn't attend her NHS party last Thursday but there were hundreds there but 4 people crafting is now too many even in masks. I understand the caution but am disappointed.

KizzyKazaer

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I wonder just how many others will be disappointed this year when we all thought bloody Covid would be under control by now  :f_doh:


My heart goes out to all of you who are finding the festive season difficult for whatever reason - I feel lucky as I've only arranged to spend Christmas with Dad, so no family get-togethers planned to give extra worry.  Mum died of Covid in February, but to be honest - after a nightmare Christmas of 2019 while she was still at home in the advanced stages of dementia - we won't be feeling the same degree of loss as we might have done had we not already 'lost' her to the latter illness way before the pandemic struck...

Is anyone actually looking forward to any of it?  I always anticipate the extra and different food with great pleasure   :f_xmaspud: :f_choc:

oldtone27

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A family member has already called off a Xmas visit because she is a little worried about Covod and also thinking that many places we might have visited may be closed or restricted.


Fortunately I am not bothered about my own company so will have a nice lazy few days.


I still have a panto to look forward to just after Xmas with the VI group I assist, but of course that may yet be cancelled.


Finally I am in two minds about another family visit scheduled for the New Year. I have not yet booked the as hotel I am thinking is it worth the bother given the strong possibility of further lock down? I am waiting a couple of days to see what changes if any Boris makes.  :f_gift:

ditchdwellers

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 :big_hugs:  all round for those who are feeling alone at the moment.


Having had a dysfunctional upbringing, I avoid family Christmas gatherings. When I was 17, I spent Christmas day with friends and by the following year I had left home. I broke off contact with my father and chose to spend Christmas day from then on alone.


I resumed a very cautious relationship with my father after about 10 years of estrangement and began to see him occasionally, always in the presence of others. When he was terminally ill with cancer my husband and I spent Christmas day afternoon with him, my mum, and my sister. I felt obliged to. The following day he was taken into hospital and died the following week. I'm afraid to say I felt nothing but relief that he couldn't say or do anything to harm me anymore.


I am once again spending Christmas day one my own again as my husband cooks lunch and spends the day with his mum who has severe dementia, and her live in carer. We have had this arrangement for the last couple of years; my mother in law doesn't recognise me and would be very overwhelmed and confused if I joined them. I don't mind being on my own. I'll find plenty of things to occupy my time, or just catch up on some rest!


It's such a tricky time for a myriad of reasons for many people. I hope everyone finds a way to safely navigate their way through it.

Sunny Clouds

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I've got very mixed feelings about meeting people.  After being invited round to a neighbour's house to sit outside with a mince pie and a cuppa last year, and inside the house previously, I've actually been anxious that they might feel they should prioritise me over seeing grandparents, but I now feel confident they will, after assessing the situation, prioritise meeting parents if they can.

I feel edgy and angry about how the government handled Christmas last year and what it's doing this year.  I believe that all the scandals are encouraging people who are on the edge of rebelling just to go out and party etc., and that then we'll go into lockdown just before more careful people are ready for a rare family get-together, so the people that take extra effort not to spread will be the ones punished, even though maybe a lot of them will be the ones least likely to be infected because the care they take means they weren't out partying etc.

Yes, that's a simplification, but it emphasises a sense I have of absurdity and injustice.  I may get lonely sometimes around Christmas, especially like some of you over the Christmas, family, Christmas, groups, Christmas merry, merry, merry thing; but I shan't be tortured by horrible family decisions. 

As for food, I'm struggling with that.  In the past, I'd kicked biscuits etc. but I've lapsed badly and where this year I've tried buying Christmas treats and putting them away in a box, I've taken them back out and eaten them.  Naughty.  On the other hand, last year a Christmas dinner (hot) appeared in my porch. Ring the bell and run away with a difference!
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Sunny Clouds

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Wow!

An old friend, who has a couple of adult children and a grandson, and who is carefully organising seeing them in relay on Christmas Day, has invited me round for a bit on Christmas Eve.  We're both triple-jabbed and careful with lateral flows, washing, keeping the door open for airflow etc.

I'm both rejoicing and crying.  His wife died a couple of years ago (pre-pandemic) and so although he's got the rest of the family, I think he'll be getting something out of this more than just the pleasure of giving me kindness.
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Fiz

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That's so lovely sunny. I'm pleased for you  :f_gift:

ally

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Sunny, I’m pleased for you too.  Christmas is always a time of nostalgia.  Remembering people you shared past Christmas’s with.  This year there’ll be empty spaces at the table, as there’s  only the two of us spending Christmas together this year.  However, I consider myself lucky, at least I’m not alone.   I’d love to see our family.  However, due to the way omicron is spreading, I think we can forget about going to Dubai in January.  I hope everyone has a decent day on Christmas Day, no matter how you spend it.  Stay safe, and, let’s hope next year is better.