The holiday season: the most magical time of the year when family and friends gather to celebrate. Even though the holidays can be great fun, they can also can be a stressful time– especially for those families dealing with epilepsy.
Family support (or lack thereof) can cause patients and parents of patients plenty of concern. If your family is supportive that is a wonderful thing, but many experience families that have great difficulty accepting and supporting epilepsy. And it can place a huge strain on current relationships.
If you don’t have that support system in family or friends, it makes you feel incredibly isolated. It leaves you with a lot of emotions from expectations not met. Aren’t these the people who are supposed to love you and care about you? The rejection of belief that the disease is real, or requires life changes can be hard realities to face.
Some of the things that you can do for those that may not have the support system in place during this holiday season are very simple, they do not take a lot of time, effort, or money.
- Send a holiday card or a note just acknowledging the family or friend means a lot to you.
- Bake cookies or sweet treats to bring over.
- Set up playdates for the children to get together and do holiday activities.
- Offer to grocery shop for them. Many parents just cannot get that time to sneak away for a few hours to do some simple tasks such as shopping.
- Send a poinsettia plant that will brighten up their home and holiday!
- Invite them over for coffee and conversation. Many families have no one they can just talk to about how they are feeling, what their life is like now, etc. Everyone needs someone they can turn to once in a while.
- Offer to watch the children. Many parents don’t get the opportunity to have a night out just as spouses and would be grateful for that opportunity.
- Dinner and a movie with other moms can be a nice small gesture.
- Leave a message, a voicemail or e-mail can make them feel they have not been forgotten.
- If you live in an area that gets snowy, offer to clear their sidewalks, driveways, and walk paths.
- Offer them rides to places they need to get to for appointments, or offer to go with them for support.
Be a blessing to someone else this holiday season. Compassion, care, and concern for others is what it’s all about. It is the season of giving after all, and it is better to give than receive. Happy holidays to you all and may you be blessed in the coming year.
About Susan Noble
As President and Founder of the Epilepsy Warriors, Susan Noble is striving to reach as many people within the local communities to help educate and bring an end to the stigma of Epilepsy. It takes team work. It involves supporting each other in all efforts. It means showing the world that Epilepsy is worth researching, fighting for, and funding. We are all fighting for a CURE for our children and those “Living with Epilepsy” every day. We are a new foundation, one with a passionate vision. This vision will light our path, and guide us towards our goals of “enlightening, empowering and curing.”
Susan and her family divide their time between Fort Myers, Florida (otherwise known as her little slice of paradise) and Chicago, IL.