Being rather than doing also requires presence. It’s easy to do, do, do—go, go, go. It’s much more challenging to sit quietly and listen.
One of my favorite holiday stories is the year I spent with my mom and dad—just the three of us—and we ate a Totino’s peperoni pizza. That was it. My mom had stopped cooking at that point, one of the many things she let go of as her Huntington’s disease progressed. There wasn’t a lot to do to prepare for the meal. We could spend a greater amount of time being in each other’s presence. It was delightfully simple.
I encourage you to look at your traditions—maybe even trim off some of the to-dos. Especially if you are caring for someone with dementia; simple is good. Don’t get me wrong, I love the big dinners and festivities, but sometimes, every once in a while, let yourself off the hook and focus on the being rather than the doing.