The loneliness of Christmas

Tonight, is Christmas Eve and I have been thinking about others who live alone like myself, those who have no family. This time of year can be extremely lonely for us. As Christmas comes once a year, we do not face these intense feelings every day and we are unprepared to deal with them now.

In my early years I found it excruciating. As Christmas is a time when we repeat family traditions, the memories were fresh. It is the juxtaposition which creates the greatest grief – we remember Christmases shared with family, but we are alone. The comparison with how it once was makes the pain intense. We are reminded by advertising and the excitement that is Christmas that we are without family. Feelings of loss and abandonment which are bearable normally are made unbearable during this time.

In my experience there are no easy answers. Although I am ever grateful to kind friends who invite me to share Christmas with their family, it can never compensate for the sense of loss. Sometimes it can even heighten it.

Sometimes I wonder if being alone just makes us more aware that we do not know ourselves. Over time I have got to know myself and to enjoy my own company. This lessened the feelings of loneliness during celebrations like Christmas. An important factor was to realise that I was loved even without the presence of another person. I learned to love myself and to feel love while alone. But this took time.

Now I share it with my greyhound. I look forward to being with him and sharing the love I feel. Tomorrow I will enjoy my friendships and celebrate what I do have, but at the same time there will be a dull ache for what I no longer have.

What I hope to express through this post is that you are not alone even if you have no one with you. You are loved and my heart goes out to you. Tomorrow as others celebrate with their loved ones, remember you are loved too. Remember that everyone of us will go through times of loneliness. In this, at least we are never alone. Ch

Message me if you want to chat.

In love, Jenny

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