Thanksgiving is a time for giving thanks and being with family. It can be a time of positivity and joy. However, in normal families, it can be stressful dealing with relatives and cooking. This time can be even more difficult if you are going through a divorce or already received one. The holiday season after the end of a marriage can be especially difficult the first year. You may find yourself remembering past Thanksgivings, where the whole family gathered. You may find yourself wondering what your ex is doing. These are all normal and expected. There is hope, however.
One of the hardest things to cope with during the holidays is nostalgia. It is the achy feeling you get remembering a fonder time. The first Thanksgiving without your spouse is bound to be difficult. Allow yourself to be sad and reminisce, but remember to move on. Often, we paint the past as an ideal fantasy, even though that may have not been the case. There is a reason you and your ex obtained a divorce. Focus on the present and on all the good things, which leads us to the next tip.
During a divorce, it can be difficult to think of anything else. But this holiday, take the time to reflect on what you are grateful for. An attitude of gratitude can significantly better one’s mood. Whether it’s mental or physically written, make note of all the things you have to be appreciative of. You can make a list filled with both serious and silly matters. For example, you may be thankful for your good health, your job, your kids’ happiness. You can also be happy that the Colorado Avalanche won that game, that your outfit looked nice, and that you finally mastered the art of boiling an egg. Whatever the case may be, we have much for which to be thankful. We just need to remind ourselves, especially in times of pain.
This Thanksgiving offers you the opportunity to start a new family tradition. Instead of dwelling on how different it may be to celebrate without your ex or their family, focus on your own family. It might even be nice, not having to deal with your in-laws. Whether you decide to enjoy some time alone, spend quality time with your kids and family, or have a “Friendsgiving,” turn this holiday into a celebration of the good, rather than one remembering loss.
Finding a good support system of trusted friends and family can make a world of difference. Sometimes, divorce can bring out both the good and bad in people. It is important that you surround yourself with individuals who truly care for your well-being and who will be there to support you. These friends and family will understand where you are coming from this Thanksgiving. They will give you time to heal or a shoulder on which to cry. They can be the people that create new traditions with you and make the holidays all the more enjoyable.
At The Harris Law Firm, we understand divorce is difficult. We hope these tips make the holidays better for you. Moreover, we would like to thank all our clients for placing their trust in us. We value your well-being and are grateful that you have or will decide to work with us. So from our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!