There are so many events that will cause you to flinch and hurt when you’re grieving the absence of someone you love. Whether we know it or not, the calendar and the seasons are things that we tend to pay a great deal of attention to. While everyone else seems to be living life pain free, you may be struck with an acute sense of loneliness, abandon or an inner despair that can actually hurt you physically. When life is good, the months and seasons flow from each other bringing with them an awareness of the tides of life. Each season holds something to anticipate and likely something to cherish. When you are raw from the grief of a loved one having died, the seasons and the calendar hold pain and anguish for you to cope with. Danielle was in dread over the 15th of each month. Her husband Bruno died on that day and each month for a day or two before the 15th, Danielle became agitated to the point where she could not settle. I hate the middle of the month. The 15th makes me shiver; I feel and re-live my husband’s death every time we get close to that day. I never knew that dates were so important but for months now the 15th has haunted me. The happy times that were special “yesterday” can bring pain “today”. Special family days like anniversaries or birthdays or social and religious celebrations like Christmas, (or other similar important times depending on your tradition) or Thanksgiving are times when others are having happy times together. Those who are grieving are often left to feel isolated and alone and to only replay the painful happiness of days gone by. Watching others anticipate holiday times can be very difficult. While they celebrate the season or time away from work and regular routine, you may only be left with an empty coldness that reminds you, that happy events were part of the past. Jeffery once told me that besides dreading happy occasions that he and Ashley used to share, he has come to really dislike public displays of happiness. Long weekends and holidays are a time that people gear up for. I hate them. Every time there is a long weekend or a holiday I move slower and resent everything and everybody. Christmas is the worst. It feels like everyone is in good mood and has something to celebrate. I only feel sad and more alone. If you are feeling the sting of grief, be aware that what brings joy to others may be a source of anguish and discomfort for you. The seasons too can be a source of pain when you are grieving. Fall and winter may match your mood and can feel like the whole world is losing life and dying. The falling of the leaves can bring with it a sense of death and things shutting down. The bleakness of the winter can add to the feelings you may carry of icy loneliness and abandon. Spring and summer may also carry hurt for you. While others celebrate the warmth and new life, raw grief can rack you with hurt. The weather outside may only feel bitter. Others are happy and things are coming back to life while you feel miserable and sad. Important dates and changing seasons for the grieving can simply be reasons to feel more alone and empty. If any of this sounds familiar to you, know that if the thought of what makes others look forward with happiness is difficult for you, you are not alone. Special social times and important dates can be very difficult to take. You are left to feel like you are the only one who has not been invited to the party. If you can find someone you trust to tell how you feel or find a way to express yourself you will through your effort, find some relief. If you don’t have a confident who will listen to you and commiserate with you then try to express your feelings in other ways. Writing, some form of art or even exercise may be ways that you can express your feelings. Anytime you can bring your hurt from the inside to the outside by finding a way to express it will be helpful and potentially healing. Don’t just let the pain, resentment, anger and sense of bleak abandon sit inside you. Bring it forward and let it out.