Alone for the Holidays?

I was planning on spending Christmas alone, but a soror invited me to another soror’s home for the day. I was watching this video on YouTube recently about holiday blues and about how it is okay to spend the holiday alone, particularly when you’ve lost loved ones and have little or no family left.  Think about it, you can do pretty much what you want to do. I thought about some other silver linings:

No gifts to buy

I literally had no stress, pressure, or deadlines to buy gifts. I bought and mailed exactly six Christmas cards. Other than that, I had no gifts to buy. I typically don’t do cards, but it’s been one of those years. We especially needed to hear from one another and check in on each other after losing two close loved ones, so it was a card year. Would I rather have these dear ones here and well, buy gifts for them, and spend time with them? A million times, yes!!! Oh, how I would love to have that “problem” again. 

You don’t have to cook 

I spent Thanksgiving alone. I booked an airbnb literally on the opposite side of town. It took me at least an hour to get there. I’d already looked into where to eat, and there was a Cracker Barrel close by, so I ordered their holiday special meal (to go), and had the coziest, most delicious Thanksgiving…alone. 

Clear your mind

It was such a blessing to relax alone. There is a time and a season for everything. I tried my best to not be too serious and plan a bunch of stuff. I mostly caught up on reading and bible study. I took naps as I felt the need, watched T.V. or not, or sat in silence. It was refreshing not being bothered by absolutely anybody! That is, after all the “Happy Thanksgiving” texts came to an end. 

Have your own brand of fun

I love watching stuff on YouTube: stand-up comedy, Seinfeld best moments, true crime, documentaries, and so on. I love putting jigsaw puzzles together over a cup of coffee. I love exploring a new area, e.g. driving around without any destination goals . And I do these things alone, and they’re fun for me. It’s partly how I spent my birthday this summer actually. I went shopping, too!

Deal with your feelings

I don’t recall being particularly sad on Thanksgiving, but I wasn’t super excited either. I was just baseline chill. I felt sad at times though — not about being alone, but about missing my family that’s crossed over, dealing with this new normal, and my own circumstances not being what I want them to be (part-time job, renting a room as a living situation, not really progressing career wise). I didn’t feel the need to manufacture positivity or keep a smile on my face. I could just be.  I wasn’t particularly sad today on Christmas, but I was super worried about my living situation, and even had plans with someone to talk about things at the get-together, but once things got started, those things weren’t so important to me anymore; the stress just melted away. I felt positive and in the mood to socialize for a while, but when that feeling left, I felt the need to keep it going. Sometimes you can’t just “be” around others because, out of concern and good intentions, they want you to be visibly happy, and they’ll go out of their way to make you so.

For me, it’s not a matter of dealing with the holidays alone. I enjoy it and look forward to it. It may be because I’m more introverted or because I welcome a break. But, if that’s not you, and you don’t feel great about being alone, perhaps reframe the situation.  Being alone doesn’t automatically mean sad or lonely. Nor is it something that needs to be explained to others.

Comment below 👇🏾: What silver linings do you see/experience from being alone on the holidays?

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