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holiday blues

The trouble is, darkness doesn't go away during the Holidays. If anything, it can feel deeper, more acute. Perhaps that's why we work so hard to brighten things up with lights and candles, and reach out to those who are in need. Sometimes, a little extra care can make all the difference to a friend or neighbor in need.
For some, the stretch of Christmas and New Year's is an endurance test of their mental health. It's too much family, too much togetherness and way too much dysfunction. They have shut down all tidings of comfort and joy in an effort to emotionally survive. As the countdown towards New Years continues, they have, more than likely, felt their grumpiness quotient ratchet up to new highs.
It's supposed to be to most wonderful time of the year. But for many people the holiday season is anything but joyous. Feeling left out when others celebrate and exchange gifts can be devastating and even lead to despair and depression.
Can we truly celebrate Christmas the way it is meant to be celebrated: intentionally, heart-fully, deliberately? Doing so without partaking in everything the season has to offer (complete with all the mayhem and chaos)? Does every moment have to count?