Christmas Poem for Those Who Grieve

Contributed by: MaryJo Zacher – Director of Pastoral Care, OSF Home Care Services

Christmas Desiderata for Those Who Grieve

Go peacefully amid the Christmas craziness and rushing, and remember that you do not have to participate at anyone else’s pace but your own.

As far as possible, without giving away a piece of who you are, be on good terms with those who matter to you.

Speak of your grief quietly and clearly and whenever you feel like it.  Allow others to listen to you and tell your story again and again.

Stay away from those who drain you and be with those who give you a sense of peace.

If you compare your grief with the grief of others you may become faltering and discouraged for there will always be people in different stages of grief.  Know that YOU are where YOU need to be for YOU.

Enjoy your small steps of success along the path of grief.  You have worked hard to attain each one.

Keep interested in your own plans and your own life.

Exercise caution in activities and traditions.  Take care of yourself and be good to yourself.  Set time limits on outings and events.  Accomplish a few things and then rest.  You heroically survived a death, you can heroically survive the holiday.

Be yourself.  Cry when you feel like crying.  Talk about your loved one when you are so moved.  If “the world” can’t handle a name or a memory, then the world will have to learn … as you are learning.  Don’t be bitter when someone talks of love.  Love is still a rare and precious gift.

Listen, if you are able, to those of us who are farther down the road in our grief.  We walked where you are now walking.  We remember that searing intense pain.  It has gotten better for us.  It will get better for you as well.

Nurture yourself.  Take a break from all the “why’s” and “what if’s”.

Fatigue and loneliness are not your friends.  Reach for peacefulness and some time alone.

Be gentle with yourself.  You are a survivor of the death of a loved one.  You can survive anything.

Therefore, be at peace with yourself and with your God, whoever you believe God is.  In the noisy confusion of the holiday season strive to be at peace with yourself.  In spite of all that you have faced, it is still a beautiful world.

Last Updated: February 9, 2022

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About Author: Michael Vujovich

An OSF Mission Partner for over a decade, Michael Vujovich describes himself as a “photo-taking, guitar-playing, web-designing, house-remodeling, Netflix-binging, cat-loving Star Wars geek.”

As Director of Marketing Technology & Multimedia, he oversees a team of digital marketing and multimedia experts who help manage web, social media, photo, video, audio and digital advertising strategies for the OSF Ministry.

Mike earned his Bachelor of Science in Multimedia from Bradley University in 2007 and a Master of Science in Health Administration from the University of St. Francis in 2014.

In his spare time, Mike enjoys reading, traveling and spending time with his wife and their three “fur children”: Marie, Sookie and Bella.

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Categories: Palliative Care & Hospice

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