On Christmas Day, we will have four extra people around our table. If they didn’t come to us, they would be alone. What’s so lovely is that I didn’t invite them, my daughter did. She wasn’t comfortable knowing that our extended family would be enjoying time together while others were on their own.
A lot of people find the holidays extremely difficult – those who are grieving, those whose families live overseas or interstate, and those who are struggling with depression. It can also be a hard time for couples dealing with fertility issues, those whose relationships have recently ended, and children whose parents are not coping after a split. Many people would prefer to bunker down and wait for the festive season to end. We obviously need to respect people’s wishes to do what’s best for them.
But there are many others who don’t want to impose on anyone else but would jump at the chance to be included – we just have to ask. And then there are those who don’t want to join in a big celebration, but would certainly love some company over this difficult period. Taking an hour to drop by with some Christmas cheer may be the difference between a person feeling totally isolated and invisible to feeling valued. Such a simple gesture can mean the world to someone else. What a fabulous life lesson to give to our children.