Why this Christmas will be a reminder of the love she lost

It was just a year ago that a smitten Lea Michele was enjoying a pre-Christmas ski trip with her boyfriend Cory Monteith.

But this year’s set to be a very different story.

As Lea, 27, still struggles to come to terms with Cory‘s tragic death, friends tell Now they’re worried about how she’ll get through the festive period without him.

A Glee insider says: Lea‘s dreading it. It was just before Christmas last year they went on a romantic skiing trip.

They had an amazing time and that was when they first seriously talked about their plans to get married.

‘When Lea joined her family that Christmas, she was so excited about her life with Cory. But now that all seems so long ago.’

In July, Lea‘s dreams of a happy future were destroyed when Cory, 31 – who she called the nicest, sweetest guy in the world’ – died in a Vancouver hotel following a heroin and alcohol overdose.

This year Lea‘s spending Christmas with her parents Edith and Marc Sarfati, who she’s credited with helping her through the grieving process, saying:

My family’s experienced a lot of loss in their life and they’ve been so wonderful in being there for me and giving me strength.’

But while Lea tries to be strong, she faces constant reminders of her loss.

As well as Christmas, she’s having to face the upcoming 100th Glee episode, which will see all the original cast reunite – poignantly without Cory.

Lea‘s also just released her first album Louder, which includes If You Say So – the song she wrote that was inspired by the last words Cory said to her.

Lea‘s said making the record pushed her to her limits, revealing last month:

You have to be very strong to come out of this alive. I feel like I’m starting to just sink in it and Cory would never want me to do that.’

Now, as Christmas Day fast approaches, Lea‘s friend reveals:

She told us: “I still can’t believe he’s not here.” All we can do is be there for her, but it’ll feel all the more raw at Christmas. All she wants is for Cory to be with her.’

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