The Irony of a New Year

The New Year typically represents renewed hope for a better quality of life amongst many of us.

On 1 January, people from across all countries welcomed and celebrated the ushering of the New Year of 2019. While the mood during the occasion was generally festive and fun, a number of people were grieving and experiencing unbearable pain as they bid 2018 a bitter goodbye.

It was so heartbreaking to find out through my social media feeds that many friends, relatives and officemates lost their loved ones during the Holiday Season. It was difficult for me to imagine or even empathize with them as the Christmas Season typically presents the best opportunity for families, friends and loved ones to reunite and bond after a grueling and tiresome year. Instead, while many were in a celebratory mood, they ended up groping and struggling to survive this time of the year without their loved ones.

Losing someone is difficult in itself, much more that it happened at an inopportune time such as the Holiday Season. Instead of attending Christmas parties, those who experienced the loss of a loved one endured days and nights in a funeral home or mortuary. Instead of spending for gifts to demonstrate love to family, friends and loved ones, they dug deep into their pockets to shoulder hefty funeral service and burial costs. Most harrowing of all, they get to hear condoling words instead of holiday greetings.

The New Year typically represents renewed hope for a better quality of life amongst many of us. For some, however, it symbolizes a new life in the absence of a person who used to be a significant part of it. Coping with the loss of a loved one is excruciatingly difficult. More so, moving forward with one's own life and dealing with the throbbing pain that goes with not seeing a loved one for the rest of one’s earthly life presents an even greater challenge.

While there are no sufficing words to console someone who lost a loved one, there are many experiences which could help one move forward. The signaling of a new year perfectly symbolizes an opportunity to start from scratch and/or rebuild one's life following a personal loss.

For those who lost a loved one, keep breathing and living as things and circumstances will eventually get better. I hope that 2019 brings you more comfort, peace and happiness.

About the Author
Mr. Aaron Benedict De Leon is currently a Business Development Practitioner in a private consulting firm. He has more than six years of professional experience in leading and managing political and non-government organizations, specializing in organizational management, policy development and program management. He has had stints with notable political/socio-civic organizations, serving in various capacities as: Secretary-General of the Centrist Democratic Party of the Philippines (CDP) [2013-2015], Founding Chairperson of the Centrist Democratic Youth Association of the Philippines (CDYAP) [2012-2014], Philippine Representative to the International Young Democrat Union (IYDU) [2011-2012], Chairperson of the Christian Democratic Youth [2011-2012], Secretary-General of YOUTH Philippines [2010-2011], and Spokesperson/Communications Director of the GT2010 Gilbert Teodoro Presidential Campaign [2009-2010].
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