Considering the last two years have been so difficult, it can be tough to get excited about ringing in a New Year -- especially for those who have lost loved ones. The Bold and the Beautiful's Alley Mills (Pam Douglas) knows the feeling, having lost her husband, Orson Bean, in a tragic accident at the beginning of 2020. Though the grief that she feels will never go away, she has learned valuable lessons about how to navigate the sadness, and she was kind enough to share them with Soap Central when we were putting together our year-end material.
"This is for any of you out there who have lost loved ones in these past years of COVID and are feeling tremendous loss and not sure how to find the courage to move on or past those feelings of loss," she begins. "What I feel was the most helpful thing I was able to focus on amidst all my grief and missing my husband more than I thought I could bear at New Year's was just how grateful I am for having had him all these years and for, as weird as this may sound, the new insight into suffering that losing him gave me towards other people in the same ditch. I saw the world as having this great gash through it -- like a giant river of suffering -- and there I was, floating on it with so many thousands of others just like me."
She continues, "There's just an odd beauty to that... to be able to hold out a hand to another floating and find solace and love and a strange kind of purpose in sharing your loss and your love."
Mills also shared some valuable advice about grief for Soap Central's holiday roundup special, in which we asked the stars to describe their perfect Christmas morning. The actress shared that she loves to be surrounded by family, lots of squealing children, smells of turkey roasting, and peaceful Christmas music playing -- but those beautiful things also remind her of Bean and the holidays that they shared together during their 27 years of marriage.
"I will, of course, forever feel the hole in that of now missing my best friend and partner Orson in that morning scene, but also, I will be so grateful that he left me with such a loving family and friends and a better understanding of gratitude, no matter what surroundings I may find myself in," she shared. "I honestly would say that that is the key to Christmas: feeling so grateful that I could be grateful completely alone and with very, very little."
Beautiful messages from a beautiful soul, who also tells Soap Central that she'd like to wish her fans and B&B viewers a very happy New Year.
How do you feel about Alley Mills's special New Year's message to fans? Have you lost a loved one, and if so, how did you navigate through the grief, especially during the holiday season? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.