The holidays are seriously my favorite time of year ever. I love the whole atmosphere surrounding the holiday season and being able to spend time with friends and family. It’s a great time to bring everyone together and see those that you may not see as often throughout the year. Unfortunately, not everyone is as lucky. There are many couples out there who don’t get to spend the holidays together or with their families.
Thanksgiving was a bit rough not having Zack home, but we are so fortunate to be able to spend Christmas together in a few weeks. It can be tough to spend the holidays away from your significant other no matter what stage in the relationship you’re in or how far the distance is. I won’t sugarcoat it. It flat out sucks. But despite the distance, there are so many ways to stay connected during the holidays so that you’re not feeling as lonely and incomplete without them there.
Find the time to Skype or FaceTime
Technology is amazing and such a great tool to keep couples connected despite the distance. We do our best to FaceTime every weekend and it always leaves me feeling so much better. It’s so nice to be able to hear his voice and see his face. It makes me feel more connected to him even though he’s on the other side of the world. Even when Zack was here last Christmas, we used FaceTime to connect with our families back home so we could be “present” while we opened our Christmas presents together. Like many other military families and long distance couples, FaceTime has become our lifeline. I highly recommend taking advantage of this (or Skype) throughout the holidays.
Send holiday care packages
Care packages are always fun to send and receive! If you and your significant other can’t spend the holidays together then send the holidays to each other instead! Get creative with this. Decorate the box, send them a few gifts, and pack their favorite candies and holiday treats. This is essentially Christmas in a box!
Surround yourself with family and friends
It can be hard to get through the day without your significant other. Surround yourself with friends and family who can distract you throughout the day. I’m so thankful to have had our family on Thanksgiving. It made it easier to get through the day because I was too busy to be constantly checking on my phone to see if he had texted or not. I had a small breakdown in the morning and another small one at dinner, but other than that, our family served as a great distraction.
Find something to do together
If you’re spending the holidays apart, then schedule a virtual date night! You can set up Skype or FaceTime, gather your favorite snacks, pick out a movie and watch it together! Due to our 14 hour time difference, it hasn’t been doable for us to do this, but I envy those who can! If a virtual date night isn’t doable, then find a hobby the two of you can do together and talk about it! Go to the gym, pick out a Netflix show or movie, or even read the same book. There are so many creative ways to spend time “together” while you’re miles apart.
Have your own “holiday”
If you know you two won’t be able to be together on the actual holiday, then plan a time to have your own. One year, Zack’s family and friends celebrated Christmas a month earlier due to his upcoming deployment. This allowed him to celebrate with those he loved without feeling left out. There’s nothing wrong with celebrating earlier or later or even having multiple holidays in order to be with everyone. Find a way to make it work for you!