What are you doing for Christmas? New Year’s Eve? New Year’s Day?

A single friend of mine was telling me yesterday that she didn’t know what she was going to do for Christmas. For a variety of reasons she’s on her own this year and, being that this is an unusual situation for her, she was short on options.

She mentioned she might spend part of the day meditating, something that is personally fulfilling for her. However, her tone of voice led me to believe it would feel very solitary if that was her only option.

So, I told her how I was in the same place a few years ago without any of my normal “Christmas plans” and not sure what to do. I decided that volunteering would be a way to have social interaction and give back to others. I asked several soup kitchens about volunteer opportunities on Christmas day; they explained that’s the only day their staff takes off so the kitchens would be closed.

So, on to plan B. I stopped by a local assisted living facility and asked if there were people there who wouldn’t have visitors on Christmas Day. They said yes. So, I told them I would like to come by and visit with them because I didn’t have my family for Christmas either. At first the staff was hesitant and wanted to know how much I would charge. I explained there was no charge, that I felt I would get back from their residents as much as I was hoping to give to them. After a few more questions they said okay.

Wanting to bring gifts, I went to Big Lots and found snowmen tea light candle holders. I filled these with candy kisses (instead of candles) and wrapped each one in cellophane.

On Christmas Day, I arrived at 10 a.m. with my bag of gifts in hand. I was escorted to the library. About 10 minutes later, an elegantly dressed woman came in and sat across from me. We chatted about her amazing travel experiences. After a while, a man wearing a great hat arrived in his wheelchair. He talked about his varied and fascinating careers. Two others joined us, and they talked about their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Pretty soon the room was full and it felt like a party. Everyone loved the snowmen filled with kisses.

Later, the staff took me to visit those who couldn’t come to the library. I went to the TV room, the craft room and a few guest rooms to meet each person and give them their gift.

Then I was escorted to the dining room and all my new friends wanted me to sit at “their” table. So, I changed tables a couple of times during the meal. When I left at the end of lunch, after many many hugs, I truly felt I received 10 times more than I had given.

So, whether or not you have plans with your family and friends over the holiday you might consider (as my friend decided at the end of our conversation) to spend at least part of your time with people who don’t have family. If you do, your Christmas Day will feel so full.

May the magic of the season be with you!

~ Christine
Dating and Relationship Expert

Goal Setting + Purposeful Dating = Satisfying Relationships

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4 Responses to “What are you doing for Christmas? New Year’s Eve? New Year’s Day?”

  1. Susan Says:

    This is such a thoughtful way to approach a holiday as important to me as Christmas. The entire day spent giving back to others who aren’t in a position to celebrate as they might wish shows such kindness of spirit. This post gave me pause and made me consider there are others in much more difficult positions than I am and in need of a “random act of kindness”. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Sherri Says:

    What an amazing way to bring the spirit of the Christmas season to yourself and others. Thank you for reminding me that Christmas is so much more about “presence” than “presents”.

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