Joy Joy Joy!
New Year’s is a time for joy, celebration, and a whole new year to enjoy your beautiful life!
Sure, some people feel that way, however, for numerous others, it is quite the opposite. The thought of the new year can bring upon feelings of sadness, loneliness, trauma-related memories, depression, suicidal thoughts, and overwhelming emotions that can seem insurmountable.
We are often spectators as media, social media, tv, and movies all play out the magical feeling of the new year. The celebrations, the fireworks, the kissing at midnight the love of your life – this is just idealist and unrealistic for most people.
I know that we all know that the media, social media, tv, and movies have been doing this forever. Fabricating stories of unrealistic scenarios and outcomes have become what are taught we “should experience”, in life and in the real world we still embrace those unrealistic ideas about the life we are living.
We often think other people are living those unrealistic outcomes without us. Everyone else is happy, peaceful, joyful, and living a stress-free life.
Curation of lives, it is not truth
Social media is a huge player in creating such a charade. People constantly curating their lives so you don’t see the reality or truth of life. Perfect family, perfect hair, crazy face altering filters, smiles with lies behind them all exist.
It does not only make the people pretending to be happy, crazy trying to keep up with the game, it also makes those not understanding the truth (that it is fake) feel terrible about themselves.
Sure, there are truly happy people out there living with minimal stress. There are people with perfect families and teeth, however, that is not the average or all lives lived. The average of all lives lived is that we are all human and we are having a human experience.
The truth is we all hurt, we are not perfect, we have flaws, we all feel pain and we all struggle sometimes.
The big yellow sharpie
The holidays can trigger or highlight those struggles with a big yellow sharpie.
No one likes it, but it happens and it happens often. And when seeing everyone else having a good time (fake or not) it makes us feel even worse. So we struggle more.
Remember that it is okay to struggle and it is human. Also, remember that we can fluctuate with how we feel while we are struggling. Perhaps being festive helps you deal with the struggles and sometimes not feeling festive and hiding away makes you feel better.
It is totally up to you and from day to day, hour to hour and min to min. You can change your mind how you feel about it. Nothing is set in stone.
A Story of Truth
I want to share with you a quick story about how I feel about the holidays. As a person who used to love the holidays, things changed for me in 2010 when I lost my brother to suicide.
I stopped celebrating Christmas for many years after that. In 2013 (November), I lost my mother to cancer and since she LOVED the holidays, I felt something in my soul calling to honor her by celebrating and decorating – so I did.
This is how I managed her loss being so close to the holidays. Since then, I would go back and forth depending on the year and how I am feeling.
Then the last 2 years of Covid, I have felt less than jolly and bright and have minimally celebrated the holidays. This year I did not put up our tree and put fairy lights on the biggest plant in our house and called it done. And for the New Year, I will be holding shaking pups while people light off fireworks.
I have not celebrated a single New Year since I have owned pets.
Go With Your Gut
I am here to tell you that it will all be okay, no matter how you feel today, tomorrow, and the next holiday season. The holiday spirit comes and goes and sometimes it goes and sometimes it never returns. However, what I learned more than anything is that you don’t need a holiday to celebrate and honor the people you love.
Do that year-round!
As we move towards New Year’s, try not to get caught up in the glitz and glamor that says you must be happy, joyful, having fun, and living it up to live your best life.
No one gets to tell you what your best life is. Personally, my best life is sitting at home feeling a little down and depressed cuddling with my dogs and partner.
I am okay with that.
This time of year haunts me like it does many others and I am going to feel into that. If you feel similar, I hope that you can feel into that and accept how you are feeling, and know you are not alone.
New Year’s is whatever you want it to be and if you want it to be nothing but another day, then that is your call. If you want to make a resolution, goal, or game plan then do it.
Do what is best for you, right now. You get to write your own story, travel your personal path, and just be you. Not even your best you – just you!
Remember, the best you, is the “you” that you do not curate, change, adapt or modify to be accepted, liked, or understood.
Make sure that you honor yourself as well.