Saturday, October 27, 2012

It Begins with Halloween - the dreaded Holiday Season

~ by Kim Brundt

The holidays can be nightmares in the making for parents who have buried their child/baby. After all, most holidays are geared toward children, children who are no longer here with us. We may not have other living children to carry on the celebration with, or we may be unable to emotionally do so if there are other children.  

The period most dreaded begins with Halloween and runs through the New Year. I remember wishing that I could go to sleep on October 30th and not wake up until January 3rd or 4th. But, realistically we all know that this is not a possibility. So, what can a hurting parent do to survive these days that can bring us so much pain?

To begin with, be gentle with yourself, your spouse or significant other and any surviving children. Talk to each other. Find out what each is feeling before making any decisions as to what you will or will not do.

If surviving children are too young to really know what’s going on, then they probably will not miss out if you decide to not put up a tree. Even older children may need to downplay the first holidays after losing a baby sister or brother, and are uncomfortable telling their already hurting parents. Once you and your immediate family decide what is right, you then tell the extended family what has been decided. Do not allow others to pressure you into doing something that is not comfortable.

I know from experience and from speaking with many other hurting moms and dads that often our anticipation of the holiday is worse than the actual day itself. This is especially true if you have given the days ahead a lot of thought and have decided on a plan of what you would like to try to do.  There are many ways to include your child into your holiday plans. Some ideas I have used and
heard of are:

·         Buying and decorating a balled Christmas tree. That tree can later be planted in honor of your child.
·         Ordering special flowers to place in a special spot in your house or to carry with you to other houses as you go.
·         Decorating your child’s grave and visiting the grave before or after the day’s activity.
·         Dedicating the altar flowers at your place of worship in your child’s name.
·         Donating gifts that you would have bought for your child to a needy child. (Many parents have found a special peace by being able to go out and actually buy the special things for their children that they had been planning on all along, then pass them on to another child whose Christmas may not have been as special otherwise.)
·         Lighting a candle or placing an ornament on a tree to honor your child.
·         Attending a special service dedicated to the honor of our children such as the International Candlelight Ceremony (held the 2nd Sunday in December worldwide*).

The ideas are endless and very personal. It is important to look into your own heart and do what
brings you and yours the peace you need. If you are not sure if something is right, try it out and, if it is not what you expected, then next year try something else.

I know if I look hard enough in my heart, I usually will find what I need to do for my boys, Jonathan and Jacob.  I will light a candle this year as I do every year in honor and celebration of all our children. I will say a special prayer for you and as always my wish for you is peace, hope and love in the days ahead.

With hugs and more hugs, Kim Brundt

Lovingly lifted from BP/USA  -Central Savannah River Area Chapter

*This years annual Candlelight Ceremony will be held on Sunday evening, December 9th, 2012 at the Calvary Baptist Church in Lake Havasu City, AZ - check with your local bereaved parents support group to find out where & when they will holding their candlelight ceremony...

1 comment:

  1. I find the holidays so very hard, it would have been my daughter's 18th this year on Halloween, she was sadly killed in an rta on the 4th of Jan 2011, her baby sister was born just 5 days before and I can say from the end of September until Feb I just want to vanish. I have 2 older children and they want life to continue with the regular celebrations and it just destroys me x I miss her so much she was a beautiful soul x