Whether celebrating Christmas, Kwanzaa or Hanukkah, the holiday season is a time to be together with the ones we love again. As adults, many go away from home to chase dreams, ending up in cities and countries thousands of miles away from the familiar smiles and faces they love. A trip home for the holidays is the ultimate pick-me-up that’s craved when the real world gets unbearable, but what happens when your pockets aren’t providing the weight to fly you home for the holidays? Don’t worry. Here’s five ways to get through the season sans family, without being a complete Scrooge. —Natelege Whaley
1) Skype your loved ones.
Why call your family, when you can connect with them face-to-face through your web cam? If you’re immediate and extended family gathers together for the holiday, have a point person set up a time to speak with everyone, one-by-one. Of course it’s not the same as seeing them in person, but it is much better than not seeing their faces at all.
2) Send cards/gifts.
Hopefully your loved ones sent you cards, especially since you’re not going to make the journey home. And even better, UPS and Fedex may have shown up to your door with a special box, with your name on it. It feels great when someone thinks of you, doesn’t it? Sending out cards and or presents to everyone on your “nice” list will make them feel better about you being absent during this time. Remember they miss and want you to be there just as much as you do, so take part in the giving too.
3) Spend time with the people around you.
Maybe you’re not the only person you know celebrating the holidays away from home. Perfect! Link up with these folks and create your own traditions. Have a dinner preparing all of your holiday favorites. This may not be your ‘real family’, but the stress is eased when you’re sharing the struggle with those facing it as well.
4) Spend the holiday with a friend’s family.
If a friend invites you over to dinner with their family during the holidays, then consider going (but only if you know this person well enough). You may just find all families are the same, and that you’re friend has a snarky aunt just like yours, and an uncle who is the family comedian just like your favorite uncle. Even if being around someone else’s family makes you miss the ones you adore, you’ll still feel the warmth that radiates from all loving families. This could hold you over until you see your own.
5) Plan a trip back home ASAP!
You don’t have the funds to make it back this time around, but you know you want to make this trip soon! Set a date when you WILL travel home and let your family know in advance. This way you can plan dates with your loved ones to make up for the lost time. It will also give you something to look forward to so that you can remain the cool and focused VIXEN that you are!