But grief has no rules. Grief has a life of its own. It's like the wind -- you can't stop it. It hits you when it hits you. It is its own master. You can't stuff it inside. You have to let it pour out eventually. You can find a more appropriate place but it must come out.
Anyway, so what can you do?
1. Let things be flexible. Your loved one may need time alone or he may need to be real active doing things. It just depends.
2. Keep your eyes open. If she is having a hard time help her with the tasks she needs to do help her (my kids did this brilliantly yesterday -- especially my oldest daughter).
3. Don't push. Don't try to fix him. Just be there if you are needed.
4. Make new traditions. The old ones very well may be seeped in the memories of the one who died. But new ones aren't. New ones can give you hope. New ones give structure, and structure is often what is needed when a person is riding a wave of grief.
5. Let the person be sad or happy or whatever. Just give her time to center herself in this new reality.
6. Remember and celebrate the religious reasons for the holiday -- there is great hope in singing Christmas hymns and going to a Christmas Eve service and spending time in prayer and focusing on Jesus and His birth.
I know there must be a lot more I could write but that's about it for now. Happy New Year. May 2014 be filled with joy and love and God's presence for you and yours.