Author: Lori Apon
Category: Grief: Coping and emotions Seasonal WidowLife
His birthday, my birthday, our anniversary, Remembrance Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and Valentine’s Day, among many other holidays, set the stage for the dip. This is when the emotional dark clouds begin to roll into the open and vulnerable places of our hearts.
You can almost see it coming at the first sign of whatever holiday season it is. (It can even be Groundhog Day for goodness’ sake!) The enemy loves to whisper the familiar lie, “You are all alone” or “No one cares.” Satan always looks for an opportune time, and will make an opportune time, to plant seeds of discouragement, rejection, loneliness, envy, and hopelessness. We must remember that scheming is his specialty! He is the father of lies and the accuser (Revelation 12:10)!
This dip isn’t just experienced by those new to loss and grief but will also attempt to assault those who are long-time veterans of living life without the one they love. Even the most content admit that the woe-is-me attitude can still attack.
Sweet friend, on Valentine’s Day, you must know and believe that you are loved even if you don’t receive chocolates, flowers, or a Valentine’s Day card. God loves you deeply. He gave His life for you and desires an intimate relationship with you.
Don’t sit in the dip:
- Don’t wait for someone to love you, find somebody to love! There is always someone to show love to within your reach–a neighbor, shut-in, small child, local service provider, or another woman who has been left alone.
- Give yourself something to look forward to. Quickly turn your focus away from yourself onto another. Instead of lamenting that you didn’t get invited to the party, extend an invitation to do something with someone else.
- Be intentional with how you will spend the day and the days leading up to whatever the next holiday is on the calendar. This doesn’t mean you need to fill the void. Silence can be a good thing but your perspective on solitude will determine your evaluation.
- Don’t sit in silence but instead turn up the praise and worship music.
- Call someone who might also be prone to sinking emotions, NOT to commiserate, but to show that you care.
- Treat yourself. It’s okay to buy your own flowers or a little something that gives you joy within reason. (You certainly don’t want to get into an addictive habit of filling the pain with things.) God is sufficient for those empty places.
- Feed your soul with the Word of God. The Bible is better than any box of chocolates that never turns back void and will be a healing balm to your soul like none other.
- Make a list of the things for which you are grateful. One Thousand Gifts is a perfect place to start.
- Fight in prayer! It is important to understand that our struggle is not against flesh and blood. We must take every thought captive before the little spark turns into a fire against our soul.
Know this – the sun will come out tomorrow. The dark clouds will often leave with the holiday and joy will come in the morning.
“Weeping may last for the night, but a shout of joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5).