It’s that really beautiful but f*cked up time of year again where, if you don’t have healthy boundaries, if you’re fresh off a breakup, if you’re in a relationship, single, have family drama or just have blood pumping through your veins, you’re literally on the world’s most, just-shoot-me-now marathon of anxiety, insecurity, missing him, feeling perpetually uncomfortable, question answering and going into emotional, physical (and possibly financial) tailspin, debt.
You’re dying on the inside, but have to put on this happy & grateful front so instead, you over indulge in food and drinks, vow to not check your phone (yeah right you’re creeping on it every minute), and try not to cry, think about the breakup, your pain and the fact that here you are with nothing but “joyful reminders” all around you of the emptiness that you feel.
Even the weather isn’t your friend. It gets colder and your ex that you miss more than anything has been replaced with a Walgreens heating pad.
Am I the only one that feels like the holidays should come with the warning: “Caution: May only be enjoyed as a couple.” ??
It starts with Thanksgiving and just when you feel like you’ve somehow survived whichever holiday you celebrate in December (and your family/friends that come along with it), then comes that empty and scary, but also kind of cool-because-I’m-wiping-my-sh*tbat-crazyass-slate-clean, feeling that the New Year brings, and then…yup, Valentine’s Day. It never ends.
If you’ve gone through a breakup, are unhappy or just feel like you’re stuck in an emotional or physical rut, the holidays have a great way of unveiling and exploiting your true feelings about yourself and your pain to not just you, but mix in a few egg nogs or spiked hot chocolates, and everyone else knows too. JOY.
So besides having each other, knowing that we aren’t alone and having this tribe of badassness to always take a break from the bs and turn to, what can you do to not just survive, but reclaim the joy, magic and wonder of the holidays when your heart is broken from a breakup and your self esteem is in the gutter?
I’ve personally done all kinds of crazy sh*t over the holidays. You lessen the reigns (read: boundaries) a bit and think that ‘getting into the holiday spirit,” means either romanticizing your ex and the relationship, reaching out, responding to him reaching out, and basically expecting the f*cktard he is, to be replaced by the good guy, the guy you know he is deep down, the guy he was in the beginning… The guy that he probably is with her. You have nothing to do but to think and so you think… and it hurts. It just plain hurts.
I totally understand the spiritual and emotional aspect of this time of year, but that still doesn’t justify why we let some time off work, a few twinkle lights, family time, decorations, music, the environment and most importantly, ourselves, engage in the OCD, assumption-making-imagination-psychosis of obsessing about what our ex is up to, the fun he’s having, missing him, reaching out, responding, sending a card, calling his mother, texting him back, having a (or 52834675387) weak moments, etc.
Remember: The holidays only have as much debilitating power as you give them.
Things like your power, your dignity, your self respect and your self esteem are NOT meant to be holiday “gifts” that you give away to your ex (and others), just because you’re feeling the spirit of giving. Those are gifts that you give yourself and are never up for the option to gift. Ever.
I’ve gotten in touch with exes, spent money and time that I didn’t have buying the best and most thoughtful gifts for the most undeserving, sent out cards, mass texts, “likes,” “thinking about you’s” (I’m literally nauseous right now), etc., ALL in the name of “please-validate-me-because-the-holidays-for-me-aren’t-the-same-without-a-f*cktard-in-them,” desperation.
You need to use this time to turn inward, focus on you and only engage in the things that make you happy and make your life better.
The key to getting through it all is by using the time NOW (before sh*t gets intense in a few weeks), to start working on your boundaries. And just like strength training, this is something that you need to work on each and every day. Little by little, you will get stronger and stronger and you will become happier and happier… with yourself and the decisions you made in light of your self love and respect.
Don’t engage. You are so much more than the depression, the emptiness, the arguments and the self doubt. You are so much more than the guy that never recognized or appreciated your value because he can’t recognize or appreciate his own.
And no matter what, we ALL have a place that we can turn to if it get’s a little too much to handle – we can come here; we have each other.
Don’t feel for a second like you have to go through the holidays alone. You’re here, aren’t you? 🙂
PS – I wish you guys could have seen me take these pictures. I was in Beverly Hills around a bunch of families and tourists and kids and I was the only one posing by the tree looking miserable and being directed by the photographer to look even more miserable. At least I have a few good contenders for my Christmas card this year haha. xx