The holidays can be a particularly hard time for parents of struggling kids. Our children may be away at treatment or physically and emotionally estranged from us. It might seem inappropriate to make merry and be jolly, as the season seems to encourage us to try to do. In spite of this, there are things we can do to make the holidays satisfying and meaningful.
Here are 3 ideas:
Give. No matter how dire our own circumstances, it feels good to give. Especially this time of year, the giving possibilities are endless. We can put a dollar in the Salvation Army bell ringer’s pot, give to Toys for Tots, spend time with a lonely friend, or work at a soup kitchen. Honestly, it doesn’t matter what it is, because it is all giving, and giving is every bit as good for the giver as it is for the receiver. Find the way that works best for you!
Grow. Give yourself the gift of personal growth this season. Read a book (see my recommended reading list), learn about your child’s diagnosis, hire a coach, go to a parent support meeting, etc. Working on yourself is one of the best things you can do for your child. Don’t miss the opportunity while your child is struggling to learn and grow from it yourself. There is no right or wrong way to do this, but there is a best way for YOU.
Gratitude. Barry Neil Kaufman says it best in his quote, “Gratitude is one of the sweet shortcuts to finding peace of mind and happiness inside. No matter what is going on outside of us, there’s always something we could be grateful for.” The secret for us parents of struggling kids is to identify those things that we truly have to be grateful for, and to express that gratitude. This process will keep us focused on what is right in our lives, and not on what difficulties our child is going through.
My hope for you is that you find meaning, enjoyment, and peace this holiday season.
There is more to come. Stay tuned next week for The 3 C’s – More Ways to Add Meaning to You Holiday Season – Even If Your Child Is Struggling.
Leslie Ferris is a Certified and Credentialed Life Coach
Serving the parents of struggling tweens, teens, and young adults
Contact her today for your 1/2 complimentary discussion to explore what life coaching can do for you.
Connect with her via her website at http://www.phase2foryou.com
This is a great gift for yourself or a friend!