Forgiveness means understanding, acceptance and giving up on looking back.
Those first couple holidays were really rough, but the spirit really does return in time.
My DDay was 6 days before my daughter's first Christmas. It was doubly excruciating to be weathering the betrayal and to let that special time slip through my fingers as I just couldn't cope with it.
Like you said, it DOES get better with time.
Maybe this year you can find an alternate way to celebrate so the triggers aren't so severe. We can't just shut off the dwelling, but we can try to distract ourselves. Think of something totally out of the box - whether it's traveling or cooking exotic food instead of traditional fare. Maybe turn this holiday towards service - look for things you can do in your community for those who don't have anything.
It doesn't have to be big - but I remember that getting outside of tradition for a while really did help distract me.
Sending you big hugs. You'll get through this, and you'll be ok.
[This message edited by Jrazz at 1:52 PM, November 5th (Tuesday)]
Just kidding, I have not been here long enough to even know that. But I get what you are saying.
Thanksgiving our family is supposed to spent the long weekend with WW's family. They are extreme in their religious and political views and only watch a "animal" named news channel. Not looking forward to that at all.
For Christmas I usually am in charge of the outdoor lights and well my name could be Clark Griswolds. I have joked that the meaning of christmas is to have the best outdoor light display! Just cannot seem to get motivated in spending several days prepping. Especially since I usually do it during thanksgiving weekend and we will be out of town. Plus there are 7 less days between turkey day and xmas to enjoy them. I might string a few but the whole village will stay in the attic this year.
I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.
One thing that honestly did help some was to start a new tradition. We always had an artificial tree and last year got a real one. And now we're going to do that from now on.
[This message edited by StillLivin at 3:43 PM, November 5th (Tuesday)]
I also really am trying to do what you said StillLivin and not let what they did take away my favorite holiday. I will keep working at it. Thank you to everyone for your kind replies.