EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — It might feel like holidays are canceled this year, but there are many ways how we can keep the tradition alive and even make new traditions.
Dr. Melanie Longhurst, clinical psychologist at Texas Tech, said feelings around holiday times can vary for each person.
She said that some might feel stressed and lonely, while others might be relieved this year since they get to spend holidays at home without having to do many preparations.
“Having mixed feelings is a good way to describe these holidays,” said Longhurst.
Grief is a feeling that has marked this year, she explained adding how we might grieve for losing loved ones, but even losing our jobs and financial losses.
The way to cope with these feelings during the holidays is to share them with other family members through conversation, she advised.
Children also feel the change, Longhurst added, saying it is good to acknowledge their emotions and ask them how they feel about not being able to do certain things they are used to or not seeing family members.
“It’s also a time to make new traditions, maybe do things that you usually wouldn’t have time to do,” said Dr. Longhurst.
She suggests making home-made gifts and delivering them to family and neighbors.
Activities like watching movies and baking can be a great way to connect to family virtually by setting up a video call in the kitchen, sharing recipes and talking.
“We have to change the way we’re looking at the same issue, so it’s not so much of a problem, but trying to look at it from a more positive perspective, even during these hard times,” said Dr. Longhurst.
El Paso County proclaimed Santa Claus as an essential worker, making sure that he can still travel and deliver gifts.
“Christmas isn’t canceled and holidays aren’t canceled,” said Dr. Longhurst explaining how telling our children about Santa can help bringing some positivity.
She added how this year is a good opportunity to give to those less fortunate and connect with the community as well.