Surviving Easter When It's Not Your Holiday: 6 Options
By Abi Weissman, Psy.D.
As I see it, there are a few options:
1) Celebrate with your Christian friends. Get to know their holiday traditions like collecting the most Easter eggs or wearing the hippest bonnet to Easter Service, enjoying meditative practice, reveling in their Christian religiosity, or spending time with San Diego's Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence http://www.sdsisters.org/events/ or check out their wonderful resources at http://www.sdsisters.org/resources/ .
2) Find people of traditions who also don’t celebrate Easter and spend time with them. Learn about other traditions around this time. This web site can be helpful in learning about traditions other than our own: http://www.interfaith-calendar.org/2017.htm By exploring this webpage, I learned about Vaisakhi (Baisakhi) otherwise known as the Hindu solar new year at http://www.interfaith-calendar.org/calendardefinitions.htm#V . There’s so much to learn if we give ourselves the opportunity to spend the time.
3) Spend time with family, chosen or blood. This holiday seems to be about Jesus for some and about family traditions for others. If you are feeling lonely this Easter, I encourage calling or texting that friend you meant to connect with but haven’t, playing some music that makes you happy and dancing around the house, taking a jog, or doing some exercise (as appropriate to you and your body), or journaling.
4) Feel your feelings. If you are angry and feel isolated every time someone wishes you a Happy Easter and you want to retort, “I’m ---- ! I don’t celebrate Easter” recognize your feelings as stemming from feeling different or lonely or perhaps from something else. Express your anger constructively by writing, singing, or heck, by bringing it up in therapy the next time you see your therapist. If you are feeling really crappy, please call up a lifeline for support like the Trans Lifeline (USA: 877-565-8860) or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline (1-800-273-8255). You are worthy of finding support.
5) Make a plan for next year. I have been thinking that next year, I might want to go hang out with some Jews or get myself to the outdoors. Perhaps, I’ll plan a camping trip for next year. This year, I worked. Perhaps next year, I’ll take off the day and get outside into the mountains or visit a beach.
6) Learn from your peers. How have you spent this Easter? What would you have done differently if you could do it over again? What were the parts you loved the most? Please share in the comments below.
Thank you for reading. I look forward to reading how you have enjoyed or escaped Easter.
Dr. Abi Weissman
This post is not meant to be taken as specific advice nor does this post imply a therapeutic relationship. Please rely on your intuition and your own individual licensed clinician to provide individual advice. If you are in search of a religious and spiritually-aware clinician to work with and you are in the Hillcrest, San Diego, CA or Poway, CA area, please do email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to set up a free 15-minute consultation with you to see how I can best help you on your path towards joy and fulfillment.