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Grieving the Loss of Tradition in the Year of COVID-19

Holidays are typically a time for family gatherings, parties, and laughter. We exchange gifts, host holiday dinners and ring in a new year together. But 2020 has not been a typical year. 2020 is the year of Covid-19 and loss has become the norm. We’ve lost family members, friends, jobs, and an overall sense of how our lives used to be prior to Covid-19. 

Depression and anxiety run rampant as we are unable to spend the holidays with our loved ones. We grieve the loss of human connection as we realize we won’t see certain family members because they are at risk. 

So, what can we do? Start by recogniinge the loss you feel and understand these measures are temporary. 

Then, embrace technology, which has been our tether to the outside world since the beginning of the pandemic. So, use it! If you’re not using it, learn how! You may have to stay physically distant but don’t be emotionally distant, too. Invite your friends and family members to a video chat. Make plans together, like watching the same Christmas movie, baking your favorite recipes, or opening presents via video chat. Ship gifts so your friends and family can open presents from you at a safe distance using video chat to open gifts together. 

If technology is not an option, keep the your holiday traditions going in your household, on a smaller scale. If you live alone, invite friends in your bubble to a “Friendmas” or gift yourself something nice to open, read, use or cook. Even sending cards or handwritten letters will create a memorable way to connect this year.

After the holidays, you can continue to utilize these methods to stay connected with friends and family. No, this holiday season doesn’t feel the same and that’s all right. Check on one another, ask how you can serve someone in need, and share a little hope to get us all through this unique holiday season. 

Resources

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/your-health/coping-holiday-stress.html

Amanda Loker

Amanda Loker

Amanda Loker is a therapist as well as a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional. She utilizes experiential, narrative, and person-centered therapy to assist adults working through trauma in a safe and accepting environment. Her goal is to help individuals realize their own strength and use that strength to move forward in their lives and reach their goals for happiness.

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