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Coping Through The Birthday And Anniversaries

It is very important and healthy for the surviving spouse
and family to acknowledge and even celebrate the Birthday
and/or Wedding anniversary of the loved one who has went to Heaven.

Have a cake with candles. Have everyone in the family make a wish and blow out the candles together. Share the wishes if you want.

Buy a present in memory of your loved one. Make it something that lives on such as a tree or flowers you can watch bloom and from year after year.

Combine what you would have spent for presents and buy something for the house that has a special meaning.

Buy or make a birthday card for your loved one. Inside, tell your loved one something which you never got a chance to say. Write about what you're feeling, what you're doing ~ anything you want to share!

Visit the cemetery and take flowers, notes, or a balloon bouquet.

Make the day a celebration of your loved ones life. Talk about the good things you remember, the funny things, the jokes played, the special moments and memories.

Your Birthday: Imagine your loved one sitting across from you in an empty chair and say "Thank You" for the ways they were there for you on your birthdays in the past.

Your Wedding Anniversary: Take money left in your loved ones wallet and eat out on your wedding anniversary with a friend ~ compliments of your love.

Anniversary Of The Death

The first year anniversary of your loved ones death may bring on a tidal wave of emotions.
You may find yourself reliving the last days of the death in a painful replay or countdown
of those final moments of your loved ones life.
The emotions can be powerful and overwhelming.
However, it seems that the anticipation is much worse than the day itself.
(Some even miss the day entirely.)
It is okay to plan something special for this day with your family;
maybe take a vacation day from work, have the kids stay home from school;
take a trip to the cemetery; etc.
However, it is important that you don't expect everyone to remember this day.

Look over the year and see how far you've come. Seeing the future as a whole is unbearable. Taken day by day, life becomes survivable.

Light a memorial candle and blow it out at bedtime.

Put a candle in the window and light it every night for a week before your loved one's passing to Heaven. Arrange with a friend or two to do the same.

Buy a single flower in memory of your loved one. Dry it or press it when the day is over. Keep it in a special place.

Visit the cemetery. Have family members bring something special or seasonal to leave on the grave.

Create one hour without pain for yourself on your loved one's death day.


Vacations may be the hardest of the special days...
feelings of pleasure may be harder to handle than feelings of pain.
How disrespectful to the one who died, you think, even to consider having a good time.
But to the contrary, how respectful to the one who died
that you must lighten your despair over your loss or be lost yourself.

We ought not to deny our grief, but we ought not to deny everything but our grief either.

You can use a vacation to strengthen bonds with supportive family and friends.

To discover that you can function on your own.

To know some measure of happiness without your loved one.

To remove yourself from the grind of your grief, from your own deadening.

To let nature act as aid and antidote to your sorrow.

You can bear the pain of your special days if you feel pleasure alongside the pain.

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