Monday, 28 December 2015

Christmas in a Cloud - Still fun!

Our family had a wonderful time! We had an endless supply of good food, Christmas presents, everything from wine to water, big screen movie, Karaoke night, playing Mafia, watching sports and zip lining.  All 28 of us! Let’s face it – the Clarke/Wint posse knows how to do Christmas!

Nevertheless, grief hung just below the surface like a dark cloud. 
The first Christmas withOUT mom.

I salute the many families who “made it through Christmas” despite loss of loved ones, tornadoes that ripped apart lives and homes, flood waters that soaked treasured memories and other tragedies that dampened the joys of living.

In my younger days, Martina McBride reminded the world that no-one ever promised that life would be a Rose Garden. The lyrics below is my reminder to us all that sunshine and rain are both needed to make flowers grow. And so it is with us. Good times and bad times are but a part of the fabric of our lives. So let’s give thanks for the good times and make the best we can of the bad times knowing that even those times are milestones on the walkway of life. And that, amidst it all, life can still be beautiful.


Monday, 7 December 2015

Beating the Holiday Blues!

Aaah Christmas! The most wonderful time of the year. But for too many people the holidays brings on the blues.

Somewhere between missing loved ones who have transitioned to another dimension or separated by distance and the hustle brought on by the holidays, there are many of us who suffer from the holiday blues. May I make a few suggestions to help you or someone you know get through the holidays with at least some measure of joy.

Avoid the avoidable

Time & Seasons: A Layman's guide 
to Overcoming Adversity
Spend time with friends and family who make your life better! Those who make you laugh or at the very least, do not pressure you into "feeling the holiday spirit." If your regular everyday spirit is good then is there really a need to "feel the holiday spirit?" Avoid people who are going to pressure you, annoy you, tick you off or make you feel bad about yourself.  Now, let's not get it twisted. I didn't say lock yourself away from everyone and wallow in depression - I said avoid the avoidable!  

Take care of you

Its the season of giving and good cheer. And with that we are coerced into giving to every charity and cause - not to mention Christmas gifts. There's nothing wrong with that BUT in all the giving, remember to give to yourself! YOU! It's not popular, its seen as selfish - I know. But balance is important to dealing with the holidays. YOU are important too. So while you consider what giving you will do DON"T FORGET YOURSELF!

Flip the Script

Flip the script on your memories and feelings. Christmas was my dad's time of year. Every Christmas I miss him just as much as the last. This year my mom transitioned. I'll miss her too this year. BUT instead of wallowing in sorrow I am determined to use the memories as healing tool. Sharing pictures and memories that remind me of the blessings they were in my life and focus on how grateful I should be that they existed at all. If you can dig deep, you too can flip the script on your sorrow and see your memories are blessings. My mom had Alzheimers - she traveled the world and in the end had no memory of her life. THANK GOD YOU HAVE MEMORIES!

So, the holidays are upon us. TV ads, traffic pile ups, lights and Santa Claus! You can get through it. You may even get through it with a smile if you can take the serenity prayer to heart:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change - you can't change Christmas - it's here to stay.
The courage to change the things I can - you can change your attitude and how you deal with it.
And the wisdom to know the difference. 



Monday Morning Meditations now available on Amazon