Hi Emily, welcome to this forum of freedom...this is the place where you can read about so many faders and how they've experienced their journey and the challenges involved. I'm a succesfull fader myself and the ARC of 2015 was the final blow for me and my family including kids. So late 2015, my fade went fast (first stopped attending meetings, then reduced field service to 0 in a few months) but as a resigned elder I knew the traps of the Borg and the personality and mindset of my former fellow-elders and all those over-zealous JW's that would love to be eyes and ears for the WT police. Therefore I chose NOT to celebrate X-mas so close after we started fading. A stricktly personal decision, but I never regret that one. We were too busy with overcoming our cognitive dissonance anyway and one elder was still visiting our house every few months in order to check our spiritual well-being (which was absolutely fine by the way since we had identified a false prophet ). Now we're out for two years, no more elder visits, congregation seems to accept our position and we can actually do whatever we want (birthdays, X-mas, New Year etc.) We still have to be cautious regarding who we talk to and I still avoid to have JW friends on Facebook but the benefits are that I still have access to JW's with open minds and can freely talk about what's going on in WT's rabbit hole. Thank god we had no other family in the Borg, otherwise things might have been much more complex or even impossible without collateral damage, I realize that.
Again, good luck with your journey to freedom, just type in "fade" in the forum's search-box and it might be a portal to exactly that "accurate knowledge" that you'll need in your current situation. This forum has all the up-to-date info, here you can ask questions, advice, find comfort, vent your frustrations and even have some really good laughs. It certainly has become my daily manna so, I hope you'll stay and keep us informed if possible!