Holidays are Hard

While some people celebrate during the Holiday Season, others are riddled with grief.


Makayla Atkinson

The Holiday Season is not always cheerful, especially for people who have recently lost a loved one.

Makayla Atkinson, Staff Writer

With the holidays nearly upon us, there is a lot of cheer in the air. However, that cheer is sadness for some people. Yes, the holidays are exciting, but they are not always easy for people. Many kids are approaching the holidays with the loss of a loved one weighing on their hearts. Whether that’s a parent, grandma, aunt or uncle, cousin, friend, or pet, even ordinary days can be challenging. Now they have to go through a holiday that’s meant to be happy without a loved one by their side. Time meant to be spent with family and friends is now spent aching for that loved one. 

I get asked all the time why I wear a necklace with a ring on it. I wear it day after day because I got it when my grandmother passed from Alzheimer’s. She passed a month before Thanksgiving and it was hard when the holidays came around. I still didn’t have my head wrapped around the fact that my grandma was gone, and I would be spending the rest of the holidays and my life without her. My family and my necklace were my support system; they got me through a lot when it came to the loss of my grandma. We now go to Omaha for the walk for Alzheimer’s once a year or we have a girls’ weekend to honor my grandma. 

Freshman Aliyah Williams has a different take on why the holidays are hard for her. She said, “It is a lot faster since everyone is trying to get things done especially at Christmas because it is almost the new year.” She feels very stressed when the holidays are around the corner since everyone is so “rushed.” Williams gets through the holidays by being organized, using planners, sticky notes, and reminders on her phone. She said, “Really just anything to help me remember.”

Study hall supervisor Misty Rhodes has a difficult time when the holidays come around. Her mother passed away on December 23, 2015, two days before Christmas, her mother’s favorite holiday. “We always have had big family gatherings with food, gifts, and family time,” said Rhodes. Since her mother passed they no longer do gatherings on the holidays. This upcoming holiday will be especially hard because Rhodes’ father passed away in June and her daughter will be spending Christmas with her dad. Rhodes said she will be staying at home this Christmas. To try to stay in the spirit, she will still decorate for the holidays by putting up trees, listening to Christmas music, and doing gifts with her daughter. 

Rhodes keeps her mother’s traditions alive by making her “super secret lasagna” every year. They make a large pan to enjoy just between the two of them. “I also make her famous fudge, which is usually too much for Nevaeh [Rhodes’ daughter] and me so I bring quite a bit to school to share,” said Rhodes. 

The holidays might seem all joyful and fun, but some people dread when holidays come around. To them, it’s not all joyful and fun because it’s filled with sadness and despair because they are missing a loved one or their head is running a million miles an hour. So be nice to people this holiday because you never know what someone has gone through. 


For grief support during the holidays and other times, reach out to a trusted adult or counselor.