'I left my Xmas tree up until March - my husband wanted it gone but I refused'

697     0
The heartbroken woman opened up about her struggle to take down the Christmas decorations (stock photo) (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
The heartbroken woman opened up about her struggle to take down the Christmas decorations (stock photo) (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Taking down your Christmas decorations is often a poignant moment, one that marks the end of the festive period and a return to normality. But for people who have lost a loved one during the holidays, it is often a difficult change to make.

Whether it signals the passage of time or the first experience you can no longer share, grief makes itself known during the simplest of tasks.

One woman who refused take down her Christmas tree until March has shared the heartbreaking reason behind her decision - and it is one many people will understand. Tragically, she lost her mum just a few days before Christmas.

As such, she couldn't bring herself to take down her tree with her mum's presents still waiting underneath, and she left it up until March 2022.

Having promised her husband the tree wouldn't stay on display for many more months, she then took to a support forum in search of advice, where many resonated with her tragic struggle.

Cherished girl, 3, who spent half her life in hospital dies before surgery eridzriquhikeinvCherished girl, 3, who spent half her life in hospital dies before surgery

The daughter's post, which has since resurfaced online, read: "I promised my husband that I would take down the tree during spring break. It's almost spring break, but I don't want to take it down, or for him to touch it either.

"Mom's gifts are there. I went Christmas shopping the day she died. Thought she would make it to Christmas. The year before she was sick with Covid on Christmas.

'I left my Xmas tree up until March - my husband wanted it gone but I refused'The woman feared she'd have to take down her tree before she felt ready (stock photo) (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

"This year she died a few days before Christmas. Had other losses during previous Christmases, but I don't want to take down the tree. Just want it to stay there.

"Freaking out that he will touch it. I need it to stay there for now and I don't know the end of now atm. Maybe for the year."

Fortunately, fellow group members were on hand to offer advice. While people advised seeking professional support, they also shared their own responses in the hopes their words could help others in the depths of their grief.

"So sorry to read of your loss, and really it is only a very short time since your Mum passed. I wonder if taking the tree down would make things 'real' to you. Only you can say. I expect your husband is so worried about you and he may be trying to force normality," read one response.

Another said "we all need to move through grief in our own time" while someone else suggested "It does not need to be an all or nothing event.

"One strategy is to start by removing only the ornaments. Or maybe just the presents, or the lights. It could be just removing one or two ornaments each day. With each day it will become easier.

"If the above sounds impossible, ask your husband for help. Have him remove one or two ornaments each day, maybe from areas that are less visible. Eventually the tree will be down."

The woman responded: "Thank you. Today, I put away the rest of the decorations (not the ones on the tree), a little at a time as you mentioned, but when it came to the tree and the things on and under it, I realized that I couldn't. My husband wants to help. He has wanted to help put things away since January. I want it to stay for now."

Information and support about grief and bereavement is available on the NHS website, linked here.

Community gathers for candlelit vigil honouring girl, 4, killed by family dogCommunity gathers for candlelit vigil honouring girl, 4, killed by family dog

Amber O'Connor

Print page

Comments:

comments powered by Disqus