In a world where technology is changing at rapid-fire speed, it’s sometimes hard to slow down. Once upon a time, looking at scrapbooks or photo albums of loved ones was enough to share memories of them. Today, there are many alternatives, such as high-tech gravestones, Internet “goodbyes” and social networking memorial sites.
But even in a day where 24 hours passes like 24 minutes, there are still plenty of ways to create, cherish and share your memories of loved ones gone too soon.
Create a tribute. Do you like to scrapbook? Make cookies? Cross-stitch? Upload videos online? Whatever method you prefer, be sure to take time after a loss to create a tribute/memorial to your loved one. Just the process alone will be therapeutic for you, and the final result will likely help others through their grief process.
Team up. If you feel you are not able or skilled enough to create a tribute on your own, ask a friend or family member. They may already have some ideas in mind—and teamwork often makes the project go more smoothly and makes it more enjoyable.
Create something immortal. There may be no immortality, but there are ways to immortalize a loved one’s memory. Many companies and organizations offer lasting tributes to honor those who have died. Consider buying a brick (or a bench, etc.) at a museum, park or chapel and having it engraved with your loved one’s name or favorite passage. Plant a tree in their honor in your yard or at a local green space—adorned with an engraved nameplate.
No matter what you do to share someone’s memory, the process of sharing is healing. Your well-intended and respectful tributes can be enjoyed by all.
Memorialize Your Loved One
When a loved one dies, the memories are always there—sometimes they are vivid; other times, they are more distant, but still comforting. Since memories can, and do, fade, however, it’s important to consider ways to memorialize those we have lost. And it doesn’t have to take much time, money or effort to do so. Remember—to cite an often-quoted line—it’s the thought that counts.
Honor their death with life. Why not plant a flower or tree in your loved one’s memory? Or keep their memorial plants alive for years to come in your home? Plants are a constant, living reminder—ones that must be nurtured and cared for, much in the same way as a friend or family member.
Create a “reminder spot.” Keep pictures of your loved one near—and think of creative ways to do so. One woman placed a glass top on a nightstand in her room and placed photos of her and her mother underneath the glass. Now every night before she goes to bed, she can look at those photos and remember those fond memories.
Offer a memorial. Depending on one’s faith, memorials of many types can be offered by places of worship. Catholic churches offer Masses; other denominations may have remembrance walls or ceremonies. Some cemeteries may have garden stones that can be purchased in one’s memory.
Live life. We can still live, even amid grief. Your loved one would not want tears to be never-ending; they would want you to move forward, happily, while still recalling their importance in your life. Living a happy life can be your legacy in honor and respect of your loved one.
Above all, however, honor your feelings. Some people choose to remember their loved ones in a very public way; others mourn in silence. Do what feels comfortable to you. If you feel like sharing with others—do.
About our Grief Educator, Chelsea Hanson
As an author, Chelsea Hanson has the special gift of finding the right words when they are needed most. Having experienced loss and transcended grief herself, Chelsea provides a sense of comfort and understanding to help people with grief. Her reassuring words provide hope that you too will be able to journey through grief and find a new appreciation of life.
Copyright 2012, Chelsea Hanson, With Sympathy Gifts and Keepsakes, LLC. All rights reserved. The information may not be used, reproduced or transmitted in whole or in part, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise. Powered by www.ChelseaHanson.com