The holiday season is upon us, a time filled with festive cheer and warmth. Whether you’re traveling, hosting loved ones, or enjoying a quiet holiday alone, there’s something about this time of year that stirs up a mix of emotions and memories — the sights, sounds, special foods and food smells, transportation hassles, stress, frenzied shopping, “crazy relatives,” lumpy futons, moments of relaxation, and cherished customs.
It’s true that the holidays are often painted as a time of unbridled joy, but let’s be honest — they can also be a mix of sweet and bitter moments. We might be celebrating new additions to the family through marriages or births, but we also might feel the absence of loved ones who have passed away or can’t join in the festivities.
These gatherings can also be eye-opening. Sometimes, we may notice that our older relatives aren’t as self-sufficient as they once seemed. During a phone call, it’s easier to conceal memory lapses or physical difficulties compared to in-person conversations, where these struggles become more apparent.
So, what can we do during these times? First and foremost, find joy in the little moments. Take care of yourself — rest well, stay hydrated, try to eat balanced meals, get some exercise (even a short walk counts!), and take deep breaths. If you have concerns or observations about your elderly loved ones, jot them down so you don’t forget.
If you’ve had changes in your family, like a marriage, a new baby, or a loss, it might be time to revisit your estate plan. Your life’s changes should be reflected in your plans for the future. We’re here to help you adjust your existing plan or set up a new one.
If you’re concerned about an aging relative, see if you can find time to chat. It’s worth a gentle conversation about whether they have a Durable General Power of Attorney (POA) or Advance Medical Directive/Medical Power of Attorney (AMD) in place. And it would be even better if they would let you review them so you can see how old the documents are and clarify their wishes regarding them.
If you’re worried about the high cost of long-term care options, contact us to set an appointment to review the alternatives available and learn how a plan can be put in place before an emergency strikes. If an emergency has struck or is imminent, then contact us right away to discuss crisis planning options.
Here’s to a holiday season filled with love, laughter, and peace for you and your loved ones.