Advice for Getting Through the Holidays after the Newtown Massacre

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The Newtown massacre shooting has shocked the nation. Getting through the holidays in the midst of such a tragedy can be challenging. Listed below are tips that can help.

1.   Gratitude
  • Be grateful for every single breath of your life. Be mindful of waking up, the grace of sleeping, the blessing of a marriage, a partnership, your family, a career and the coworkers you love.
  • Be grateful for a good support system through family, neighbors, your community, and co-workers. We saw this demonstrated magnificently in Newtown. We should all follow their lead in our own lives. One of the crucial ways they will heal is through community support.
2.   Compassion
  • Each of us has the ability to judge and focus on our differences, but as we have seen in the light of this horrendous tragedy, we have the power to look beyond these differences and focus on our similarities. WE ARE ONE HUMAN FAMILY.
  • We can see this as a blessed opportunity to be compassionate and share in each others’ pain and suffering, losses, healing, and joy.
3.   Kindness
  • Kindness doesn’t cost anything, require any education or wealth, but it is truly one of the most valuable human gifts we can share with each other.
  • Kindness makes us a different person. We approach the world with a subtle trust, grace, and openness that heals, and opens our lives to each other. When I experienced a serious traumatic brain injury and was dealing with the horrors of a subsequent depression, various people showed me kindness. I felt as if the heavens had opened up and a miracle of love was embodying me. So, please practice kindness.
4.   Rituals
  • Sharing family meals is essential.
  • Sharing family meals is more about nourishment of all kinds. A family meal is physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual nourishment.
  • Sharing family meals together has the power to help parents and children connect. It creates a sense of security.
5.   Move Your Bodies Together
  • Get your family’s mind and body moving; sadness, anger can paralyze you, slow you, and stop you.
  • Movement moves pain and grief through your mind and body. Walking together, playing Wii games, and shooting baskets, all foster communication, and trust.
6.   Get an Animal
  • If you don’t have an animal get an animal for your family if you can. Research shows that an animal can comfort a child like no human can.
  • An animal of any kind can help your child love, trust, and communicate with others. This connection with animals can lead to further communication with the family.
  • An animal can lead you through the darkest of paths–grief, suffering, illness, loss.