Every American was affected by the Newtown tragedy.
Many of us feel snowed in by the maelstrom of fear-based media that didn’t let the children, the families or any of us really process what happened. I think most of us are walking around shell-shocked. I’m personally broken hearted for those babies who thought they were going to school one day and walked into someone else’s nightmare.
How can we make ourselves feel safe in a world that feels just really unsafe? We are all grieving in our own way. That grief on top of the standard pressure of the holiday season and it’s easy to lose it.
My best advice for you these next two weeks–in considering the often overwhelming holiday stress–is to take some quiet time for yourself. That quiet time can include a nice walk, jog, meditation or related activity. The place in our hearts where compassion, love and spirituality live is a place that can be accessed through quiet.
These next few weeks–to reduce holiday stress–I encourage you to give yourself the option to opt out. No one is judging your level of “holiday spirit.” There is nothing wrong with being spiritual in your own way–a way that doesn’t involve going to Target at midnight on Christmas Eve or spending every night out at holiday parties drinking a bottle of wine and losing yourself in a platter of broken Christmas cookies.
Feel free to turn off the soundtrack of Christmas consumerism and take some time. That means the song “White Christmas” [actually written by someone who was Jewish named Israel Isidore Baline--known as Irving Berlin].
It’s ok to opt out. It’s ok to take quiet time for yourself. It’s ok not to spend all your money on gifts. It’s ok to skip the holiday parties because you don’t want to be around social stress, alcohol and sugar. It’s really ok. And you are going to be more than ok. Remember, we’re all going through this stuff together. You’re not alone, and you don’t need to try and be everything to everyone. I will always accept you just as you are.