Create The Holiday Season You Desire


Holidays are a time filled with memories and stories we tell ourselves about the way things should be.  We see images all around us of families gathered around the dinner table sharing food and laughter.

Yet holidays can feel, stressed, sad and isolated.  Years ago after my daughter died, that first Christmas it felt so unnatural to celebrate the holiday. There was nothing about the holiday season I was looking forward to. I was still searching for answers to questions like, “why did this happen,” or  “when will I feel normal,” and “will I ever laugh again.”

As the years passed and holidays have come and gone, it’s those first years after my daughter died, and the struggles that they brought that have helped me today appreciate and love the holiday season.

It’s those lessons that have taught me to take control of my time and to prioritize my holiday to include the things that are valuable to me and let go of other things that society says is part of the holiday season.

The truth is we all bring our past experiences to the holiday season with our expectations of how things should be, or should have been.

Whether our experiences bring us to memories of loved ones who have passed or other past experiences and memories it’s our interpretation of these memories we are bringing forward into our lives today they can either help us to create and have the holiday we want or it can take us to the past hurts and regrets.

In each of us is the ability to create the holiday season we desire and enjoy the holidays.

Think about this question, “what do I really love about the holiday season?”

If you had asked me that the first year after my daughter died, my answers would have revolved around her being part of our holiday and what was no longer possible. I was stuck looking at the past. I didn’t understand I could create a future that would be filled with new joy and  that I could enjoy the holidays.

While there is no going back in time and reversing it, there is something we can all do that is of’ benefit, it’s going a little deeper to answer the question.

Today my answer would be,  “to understand her purpose in life and to have a holiday filled with love and joy.”

Your answer may be completely different, maybe it’s to have less stress or to find forgiveness. Whatever your answer is, your solution is also within you.

Every one of us, regardless of our past, can choose to learn from the past and to create more from the experience, not only during the holidays but also throughout our life.

Change is constant for us all but how we look at our life and our experiences is our personal choice. To take the change and use our time as a chance for personal growth, to find the love and joy in the changes that happen to us, that is a choice.


The choice to grow, to love, and to give by sharing your experiences with others is yours.  


If you would like to discover more about moving forward in your life put your name and email in at the top of this page and we will send you a complimentary Journal Of Discovery to help you reveal how your past can be the very catalyst that moves you forward in life and how you too can live your life without limits.


To Your Life Without Limits,

Elena & Jean


P.S. We would love to here your thoughts. Leave us a comment below and share with us. Feel free to also share this post with anyone you feel may benefit.

18 replies
  1. Meire Weishaupt
    Meire Weishaupt says:

    I agree with you focus in what’s valuable, and don’t in all the commerce around the season. I love this time of the year and enjoy being with my family, doing things we like to do together, and stay away from the malls!

  2. denny hagel
    denny hagel says:

    Love this article! Long ago we, as a family, decided that perfection was definitely out and FUN was definitely in! Now our focus is on what we want to do rather than what is considered ‘traditional’ and expected!

  3. Diane Marie
    Diane Marie says:

    I can totally relate. There were many years where i dreaded the holidays as they brought back such sad memories for me. Now I make a conscious choice to find the joy and love around the holidays and I look forward to making others smile with gestures of kindness. Last year we went to a city park and handed out Christmas cookies to the homeless in the park. Great post Jean!

  4. Jeanmarie Bills
    Jeanmarie Bills says:

    Thanks Diane. It is amazing how great small acts of kindness make us feel. We did something similar at Thanksgiving when we were in NYC. I am glad the holidays bring you joy and love now.

  5. Louise
    Louise says:

    Beautiful message. I also lost a family member and right around Christmas time. But having had little ones around and lots of loving friends and family, I managed to stay open to that Christmas spirit. To me, Christmas just seems to bring the goodness and joy out. It just has this great energy and it’s up to us to be open and tap into it.

    • Jeanmarie Bills
      Jeanmarie Bills says:

      Thanks Louise I agree when the experience is new it may not feel like you could ever find joy and happiness during the holidays but it’s there if you are willing to reach out for it.

  6. Gladys Diaz
    Gladys Diaz says:

    Those first few holidays and birthdays after losing a loved one can be so difficult. My late husband passed away right before my birthday, and the first holidays after that were Thanksgiving and Christmas — two of our favorites. While it was difficult to really “feel” joy, remembering how much he enjoyed the seasons, seeing the ornaments we’d collected over the years, and just being surrounded by people who loved him, too helped me get through them and actually feel some happiness! Now, I still have his favorite Star Trek ornaments on my tree, surrounded by the ones my husband, children, and I have collected (thankfully, we’ll all Star Trek fans, too). It helps me to remember him with a smile and to see just how much love, joy, and peace are in my life now! Thanks for another great post! 🙂

  7. Jeanmarie Bills
    Jeanmarie Bills says:

    You’re welcome Gladys thanks for sharing your story. I love learning more and more about how you moved past the grief and found so much love and joy in your life.


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