WellesleyWeston Magazine

WINTER 2016-2017

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: https://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/745407

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Page 132 of 211

"Going through the holidays so soon after my parents' death, I felt like the rest of the world was moving around me, and I was going in slow motion," says Karen, who notes that the years since after have gotten better. Casellini says being kind to yourself as you go through this process is the most important thing. She also gave these insights and advice: n THE ANTICIPATION and expectations of the holidays are usually worse than the actual day or days. n AS PEOPLE WORK THROUGH their grief, the holidays will likely become enjoyable again at some point. n GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION to handle the holiday season the way that works best for you, not the way your family and friends think you should handle them. For example, having a Christmas tree may cause more pain than comfort. n FIND WAYS TO INCLUDE the memory of your loved one into the holidays. It can be simple as lighting a candle for them, purchasing gifts or making a donation in your loved one's name, or wearing special pieces of clothing from your deceased family member. Besides the winter holidays and Thanksgiving, there are also the Jewish high holidays of Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah in the fall, all of which can be "soaked in tradition," says Casellini. Rachel, who lives in a nearby town, lost her husband of 66 years on the afternoon before Yom Kippur last year. Even though she was with her family during the holiday, she almost passed out, and her family had to call 911. "The first year was very lonesome," she says, but she benefited from being involved in a bereavement support group at Good Shepherd. "I learned from my support group that it can take a long time." Jan Tuckman, chief social worker who has been with Wellesley's Human Relations Service, Inc. for about 30 years—the first community mental health clinic in the country—says, "It will 131 w i n t e r 2 0 1 6 / 2 0 1 7 | W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e

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