Earlier this week, I wrote a post about how it’s okay not to be okay, especially during the holiday season. Writing that post brought up a lot of feelings and memories of past holidays, and let me play over some of the more recent ones in my mind. I can’t remember a holiday I’ve experienced where anxiety or depression hasn’t played a role; I know they exist, but I can’t remember them. Instead, my brain will instantly remember the feelings of guilt, anxiety or shame that I felt the holiday before, and that turns individual memories into cycles of negative thoughts. Writing my latest post brought that all up again, so I’d like to respond to that with a holiday message specifically about 2020.
As they’ve been since March in the U.S., the holidays have looked different in December, and they’ll continue to look different. They’ll change where we physically celebrate these holidays, and who’s there celebrating with us. Some traditions might not get to be honored this year; that’s okay. Have hope they can be celebrated next year. There are some people you might not see this year; that’s also okay. Continue to stay in touch with these people and connect with them. We have a whole world on our phones, tablets and computers.
But some things remain the same, no matter the circumstances. And one thing that hasn’t changed – that will never change – is the fact that despite everything going on, it will always be important to take care of ourselves and our well-being. I know that regardless of where I am or who I’m with, managing my mental wellness will always be a priority. That might not sound super uplifting, but it’s only of the only certainties I’ve been able to hold onto this year. Despite all of the obstacles and challenges, the sadness and uneasiness, I can count on the fact that I need to take care of my mental health. It’s not much, but it’s something. And it’s something that has saved me more than once.
So amidst all the uncertainty and the anxiety you might be feeling, I wish you the best holiday season this difficult, unrelenting year has to offer. You continue to matter, your existence and feelings are valid and there is always somewhere else to turn. All my love to the readers this holiday season.