Last year at this time I wrote about Welcoming Grief At The Holidays and how that first Christmas good friends welcomed us into their home, accepted us as we were (broken and struggling) and helped us feel love and laughter on a very difficult day. This year I’m encouraging those who know of people who are on their own and those who are on their own to ‘reach out’ and make it a better day.
For those with family reaching out is a gesture of good will towards others; an opportunity to share one’s good fortune with those who would otherwise be alone. We used to open our home to folks who didn’t have plans. We thought about those we knew who were single and we asked. It just made sense.
Reaching out for those who are on their own is an act of faith because when we ask to be included we are vulnerable. We touch faith with the hope that we will be welcomed. I’m lucky in that one of my friends comes from a family that opened their home to not only extended family but also the friends of their children on Christmas day. I spent more than one Christmas day in my youth hangin’ with the cousins and the aunties. My friend has continued this tradition and when he realized I would be on my own I was welcomed. I didn’t even have to ask, he did- just as we once had. From vulnerable to welcomed in seconds flat. 🙂
In a culture geared towards ‘coupling’ and on a holiday that screams ‘family’ (dysfunctional or not) admitting I was going to be on my own on the 25th sounded sort of ‘loser’ish. Of course, it isn’t. But, all the same if those with broods reached out to those on their own and those on their own let those with broods know what’s up I suspect more of us would spend the day with people who love us and whom we love. And that would be a grand thing. A grand Christmas thing. So regardless of which side of the fence you’re sitting on go for it…Reach out, touch faith and share some holiday love.
If after that pseudo rousing call to action you still need a bit of encouragement to get the ball rolling here are three different versions of Depeche Mode’s Personal Jesus (Reach out and touch faith). Listen and reach out..
I love them all.
Depeche Mode (original) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1xrNaTO1bI
Johnny Cash’s gospel cover https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qpYW3qng78E
Marilyn Manson’s cover https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rl6fyhZ0G5E
Reach out and touch faith hand stamped bracelet available through etsy
To learn more about Heike (Author: “Grief is…”) click here