Coping with illness during the holidays

Dr. Christine Dietz
By Christine A. Dietz, Ph.D., L.I.S.W.
Living with cancer or a chronic illness is challenging at the best of times, but especially during the winter holidays. Although it may be a joyful time of year, when we are ill we may feel too tired, depressed or anxious to celebrate. We may also feel overwhelmed with expectations (ours or others') to do everything we've always done. We may feel obligated to be happy and cheerful while feeling sad and scared inside. How can we celebrate a meaningful holiday season while dealing with illness?

Holidays are "holy" days - days of holiness and days of wholeness, days to which we bring our whole selves. The words "holiness" and "wholeness" are connected in many languages, as are the words "wholeness" and "wellness." Holiness means bringing our whole selves to whatever we are doing, from whatever state of wellness we are in at present. If we need to receive more than give at a particular time, then wholeness means acknowledging that and making decisions and plans that reflect our needs to receive as well as give.

special to the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center 
by Billie Wade

10 ways to cope with grief in the holidays

by Jim Hayes, D.Min., M.Div., Executive Director

"Counseling saved my life." 

mother and baby
Click image for a message from executive director, Jim Hayes

Give the gift of hope and healing. 
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Our mission is to bring understanding, hope and healing to people of all ages through counseling and education.
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Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center is a nonprofit, nonsectarian organization  serving more than 3,700 individuals annually including children, adolescents, adults, couples and families. Although best known for its 45 years of quality, professional mental health therapy, the Center is a multi-faceted organization providing a range of services:
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In gratitude,

Terri Mork Speirs
Director of Development and Marketing
Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center