Tips On How To Survive And Enjoy The Holidays With Chronic Illness

Tips on how to survive and enjoy the holidays with chronic illness - Tips On How To Survive And Enjoy The Holidays With Chronic IllnessIf you are living with chronic illness, the Christmas holidays can be the most stressful period for some people so here are  some top tips on how to survive and enjoy the holidays with chronic illness.

Parents with a chronic illness are often worried and scared that they might not be able to get involved in the festivities. That is enough for them to get anxiety and then crawl back into their shells. They often isolate themselves from everyone and avoid the fun they should be having with their loved ones.

Don’t forget that kids will be kids and will get all hyped up by the Christmas tree decorations, presents and family members turning up for the big Christmas dinner. All of these become overwhelming for any parent battling chronic illnesses.

Here at Grant A Smile we have put together some tips to help you get through the holidays feeling bright and breezy…..

Start Planning Early

If you leave everything to the last minute, it is bound to have serious implications on your health and you will be unable to enjoy the big day with the family. Like with everything in life, plan early to avoid additional stressful situations. How can this be done? Simply make a list of all the things you’ll need to achieve before the big day.

Christmas shopping list for parents with chronic illness - Tips On How To Survive And Enjoy The Holidays With Chronic IllnessMake a Christmas shopping list

Decide early enough if you are hosting the party this year or not. If you are not hosting one, will you do attending one? If you are hosting, then it’s time to make a shopping list. For example, table cloth, decorations, glitters, crackers, candles etc. Then break down the list into more details like this:

  • Foods (further divided into the special meal, treats, and the other food items)
  • Gifts (Write down the names of who is getting a gift and what you could get?)
  • Cards and Invitations (To who and when and how will you send these?)
  • Cleaning and Decorating. (Assign who is doing the cleaning and decorating)

Delegate Tasks

When tasks are assigned to members of your household it makes it easier to achieve them without you feeling overwhelmed and tired. Don’t try to be the superhero mum or dad that does everything just to please everyone else but you. Remember, you must take everything easy and not stress or press yourself to breaking point just because it’s Christmas time.

If you have no one to delegate the task to, then do a couple of them every week. For example, do your gift shopping online – ordering your Christmas cards, ordering supplies like sugar, nuts, crackers, bangers, decorations, napkins, table cloth, foil, and plastic wraps etc

Now, as Christmas approaches, decide on which one you are going to get done and take it slow and steady. Remember, you will have low days and bad days so best to do as much as you can without stressing or overworking yourself on a good day.

Christmas with a chronic illness - Tips On How To Survive And Enjoy The Holidays With Chronic Illness


Keep everything simple. Don’t try to go overboard. Plan simple meals and have simple decorations. Always remember to say to yourself ‘Less is more’ when the tendency to go overboard comes rushing through your head. Honestly, the most important wonder of the holiday season is not how much you spent but the time you spend with your loved ones.

Washing the dishes and tidying up after all the eating and fun activities can be overwhelming too, so consider using disposable glasses, plates and dinnerware. Again, everything you need can be bought online these days and delivered to your door.

Get Help

Remember to always ask for help. We all need help to have things done.

For young children, decorating and cooking together are activities that make some of the best memories as a family. Don’t deprive your children – or yourself – of them. Better still, sit in a comfortable chair while the kids hang the decorations. You’ll be right there to answer questions and direct them to do it right. If it takes too much for you to handle, just remember that none of the decorations in your home truly have to be perfect. It’s more important that they invoke a feeling of love, togetherness and unity. Christmas is a season for love and that is all that this whole craziness should truly reflect. LOVE…

Ten ways to keep it sweet and simple:

  1. Delegate who wraps the gifts and share the task if possible
  2. Using a pre-lit tree, rather than stringing lights.
  3. Guiding the children or your spouse in putting up decorations.
  4. Having others haul decorations from the basement, attic, or garage.
  5. Simplifying your menu and gifts.
  6. Opting for disposable cookware and dinnerware.
  7. Enlisting the kids and other family members to clean and decorate.
  8. Hiring help for outdoor cleanup and decorating.
  9. Having others bring holiday treats and dinner items
  10. Choosing the activities you most want to take part in, foregoing the others.

From all of us here at Grant A Smile, wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year!

merry christmas from Grant A Smile - Tips On How To Survive And Enjoy The Holidays With Chronic Illness

merry christmas

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