I’ve noticed more awareness on social media this year of how hard Christmas can be for people. I understand that, having found Christmas difficult for a variety of reasons as last years post can show. Regardless of what is missing in your life, this time of year throws the haves and have-not into stark contrast, whether it is missing a family, parent, a spouse, or loved ones in general.
The world has had a tumultuous year, 2016 gave us Brexit and Trump, and stole away so many beloved famous people ( David Bowie, Terry Wogan, Prince and the list goes on) but on a personal level, I had a good year, a year that ends with me living in Paris and loving it. This year for the first time in 8 years, I will go back home to Ireland and spend Christmas with My Mum, My Sister, Bro-In-Law and nephews, not to mention my extended family and friends. I’m actually excited about Christmas, thrilled to see the lights here in Paris, shop at the quaint Christmas markets, and hear live music on the streets. Carols still make me cry – I don’t know why – they just do…nostalgia, I guess.
Christmas pulls at my heart now in a different way. I no longer mourn for myself. Even though I miss My Dad, I can accept that this is the circle of life, especially when I’m now planning the Christmas-present shopping-trip with my nephews instead of My Dad (though I’d say there’s less chance of that expedition ending in Red Neds with a Guinness and a Buckfast chaser – Cheers Dad!)
I still can’t help thinking about those people who hurt at Christmas, so I put this little reminder together.
While it’s worth being mindful of the pictures we post on social media at Christmas, (or any time of the year) I think it’s a shame to curb our joyful moments – the kids with their presents, the food on the table, the friends around the hearth, what’s left of the ham after the dog has stolen it, etc. These are beautiful moments and worth sharing (well, maybe not the stolen ham…) But perhaps we can do better, do something that may actually help the less fortunate without us needing to run a marathon, or climb a mountain or pour a bucket of water over our heads.
How about this year, while we are posting our happy moments online, we take a moment to find a link to the donation page of a charity of our choice and post that too. How much you donate is of course your own business. But posting the link will remind you and those who see it to make a small (to you) donation that may make all the difference to someone else.
We may not be able to individually cure cancer, help the dying, save refugees from drowning, stop war, feed the world, shelter the homeless, comfort the lonely, but small actions add up to larger ones and we can all play a part. So while you are posting that selfie on Christmas Day, think also of posting a “helpie!”
Feel free to use one of the links below (these are my favorite charities):-
And for dollar donations:-
Wishing you a happy, fulfilling and peaceful Christmas.