By Kimberly Zapata
When the weather cools, and the calendar rolls from November to December, one thing is clear: the holidays are officially upon us. For many people — especially kids — that leaves them feeling a bit happier than they might be at other times during the year; they might even feel a rush of excitement. (I know my daughter is bouncing off the walls right about now, hopped up on sugar and Christmas cheer.) But for some of us, the holidays might not usher in the same kind of unabashed happiness. For some of us, they’re a reminder of what we do not have, or cannot have; and for those struggling with addiction, alcoholism, or a mental health concern, the winter season can be particularly hard.
Like it or not, the holiday season tests us. We’re forced to be social when we may not want to be. We are left alone when we want to be held, comforted, or hugged; and we must face our demons head on. Booze and holiday parties and awkward social situations abound. But according to pop singer Kesha, the best way to handle all of the holiday pressures is to start with yourself. To carefor yourself.
In an essay penned for TIME magazine this week, Kesha opens up about why the holidays can be so rough for those struggling.
“The holidays can throw you off your game — and that can shake you,” she writes. “When you have a routine, it’s easier to manage whatever mental struggles you may be faced with, but when that routine is broken, it can trigger things you may not be ready to face. I know it has for me. It was during the holidays when I hit a low moment and with the help of my mother decided to seek help for my eating disorder.”