The Colors of Christmas - Red, Green and Blue
When you think of Christmas, what’s the first color you see in your mind? Red, of course. Santa’s stylish red suit, his red cherry cheeks, those gorgeous red poinsettias. Second is Green: Christmas trees, garland, baskets of greens.
But there’s another color that affects a lot of people at the Holidays--Blue. When I was in my early twenties, newly married, and arrogant about life as we all are in our twenties, my Mother-in-Law would tell me she was “blue” at Christmas. I wasn’t sure what she meant...I thought how can anyone be depressed at Christmas; it’s the most wonderful time of the year.
It seems a lot of people are blue at Christmas. Many people are alone, have families living a long way away, or have no family left. Some can be depressed even in the middle of large gatherings.
As my own Mom got into her mid to late sixties, she would cry buckets through every Christmas celebration. I tried to talk to her about it because it was seriously upsetting the kids in the family. I felt helpless and didn't know how to make it "all better" for her.
Depression at the holidays is very prevalent leading me to think that maybe once the kids are all grown up and we don’t have the excitement of making Christmas bright for them, our expectations suffer a downturn.
If this is a problem for you; here are some ways to cope:
1. Don’t drink; alcohol just exacerbates the feelings of melancholy by depleting the brain of serotonin-the feel good chemical that the brain needs to maintain a normal mood.
2. If you don’t want to be alone, volunteer at your local church or soup kitchen.
3. Decorate for you! Decorate with lots of lights and colorful decorations to brighten you whenever you look around.
4. Visit a nursing home, take cookies, magazines, flowers. Those folks are truly lonely.
5. Take walks in your neighborhood and enjoy (really enjoy) the Christmas lights and decorations. Think about how you might have decorated this house or that house.
6. Start a good book or watch a truly funny movie. Immerse yourself in funny jokes or movies or books; pass up watching "It's a Good Life" on TV-have you ever seen anything that makes you cry more than that?
7. Develop an Attitude of Gratitude. Be thankful for everything you have and have had all your life. Be happy to be alive for another Christmas miracle.
8. If you have an elderly person in your neighborhood, someone who is alone, please take a few minutes to say Hello and maybe drop off some cookies or a small gift. You will feel better if you do something for someone else and so will they.
Relax, breathe deeply, enjoy the days as they pass. Happy Holidays.