New traditions during the 2020 holiday season - Haley Broadaway
Households in the United States are being urged to stay home following the Thanksgiving Holiday due to predicted surges of Covid-19. Gathering for the holidays is an age-old tradition, and many are feeling the grief that comes with holding to safety guidelines. It is normal to yearn for the level of comfort and belonging that traditions contribute to our identity. While it is undoubtedly painful to stay away from those you love, it can be incredibly arduous to miss special traditional norms. After all, tradition amplifies our core values and cultivates generational reflection. It is normal to feel a sense of melancholy when your deepest desire is to be surrounded by family and friends. It is important to honor that sadness and respect your unique grieving process.
One of the critical components to honoring your grief is investing in yourself. This is not to say you will not have moments of sadness and longing. Yet. by carrying on or creating new traditions for your household (even if it is a household of one), you're weaving your own story into the tapestry of your generational traditions. While practicing traditions is a way of paying homage to those to have kept them alive, choosing to do something meaningful for yourself and your household is not only a display of honoring your feelings, but it is a beautiful exhibit of self-love.
There is no "right" way to celebrate tradition. Whether it be an attempt at old rituals or new adaptations, bringing authenticity and good intentions are all you need. On the flip side, if there are no customs you wish to carry on, there is no harm in starting your own tradition. The world will remember 2020 as a year of change, and you can bring a positive light to your story by facilitating or revamping your cultural norms. The memories you make in the process will be worth the effort.
There is no harm in holding onto hope that friends and family will be present in next year's festivities. There will be a time when gathering in numbers will not feel irresponsible, and though it may never be exactly how it was before, there will be meaningful future events. If you find yourself struggling during this holiday season, Mindfulpath is here to support your mental health needs. Please reach out to our offices to connect with any of our capable and compassionate therapists.
Stay safe and healthy,