Getting through Christmas as an ex-pat desperateanglohousewife.
We all know that Christmas is supposed to be the time of family togetherness, parties and fun.
But frankly, for many of us, it’s a time of great stress mixed with extreme home-sickness plus the heart-wrenching pain of children leaving home for the divorced partner's over Christmas.
All teachers understand the stress of end of year classes, marking and team-management. Our students are exhausted, the pile of marking reaches monumental K2 heights and colleague management takes every last drip of energy.
For those of us ex-pats who live just too far away to fly home to our respective "home" countries, Christmas marks yet another time away from our loved ones. I dream of a warm NZ Christmas surrounded by the laughter of my mad family and another top-up of fine NZ Sauvignon Blanc...
One in three families also has to deal with the pain of children leaving home for Christmas. Every other Christmas my children leave for their father's and although I am happy for them to be with him, it is a time of extreme pain for me. Like thousands of other ex-pats, divorced with children, Christmas without your children in a foreign country is quite an emotional hurdle to conquer. Rekindling the "Christmas spirit" in a childless home is not an easy task.
Stay positive..There have been times when I have considered how hibernation would be preferable than getting through this season with a smile painted on my face. However I do have a few ground rules which prevent me from falling apart:
Calm things down; relax...amazon.co.uk...books books books!!Do things with people you feel most comfortable around...don't force things.Sneak off for afternoon naps with the cat.Talk about it with your partner. If you feel overwhelmed, let people know why.Be busy, not "boozy."Get the house ready for next year...throw out or give away all those clothes, shoes you never wear.Go for walks every day...this will clear your head and lighten you up.Evening baths with aromatic oilsStart a 30 day Magnesium cure, start the New Year in good health.
And don't forget....chocolate!