5 Ways to Bring Healing in Commemoration
Death is a robber and thief, takes away,Â but grief and sorrow can give it back.Â Â Â Â As hard as it is and perhaps daunting at the time it isÂ possible to recover from grief with new strengths, a new focus and a new direction. To grieve isÂ natural and healthy. The healing process starts as you releaseÂ yourÂ grief, and start toÂ recognize and sortÂ Â your emotions ( which can be
conflictingÂ at times) and move to the acceptance of your loved ones death.Â The healing process will bring an increased awareness and new understanding.
A child once told me that she had seen a rainbow near the beach where she and her deceased brother had played.Â She said that the rainbow was his way of letting her know that everything was okay and she should stop worryingÂ about him.
What is synonymous of New Zealand areÂ the number of crosses that have been erected along roadwaysÂ to mark theÂ death of a loved one in a fatal accident. This is not onlyÂ a reminderÂ for the families setting up a memorial for there loved one but has made the public aware of a death and to slow down.Â Many of these road side memorials are lovingly cared for (with flowers)Â year after year.Â
Whether it is a cross or rainbow we all need something in our lives when a loved one dies.Â Â Â We need to arrive at that place of rest and peace, and go on with our lives whether we are six years old or sixty.Â Â
5. Ways to Commemorate a loved one.
1. Celebrate the life on the day of death.
Make this a special day for you and your family.Â I know ofÂ a family who always made it a fun dayÂ - a meal out and a visit to Â Â the movies.
2. Plant a tree
A tree represents new life and a living tribute to the deceased.Â As the tree grows tall and strong in statureÂ so will you and Â Â the family.Â Â
3. Display Photographs.
Make aÂ display board for the photos.Â Â I saw a wonderful example ofÂ photosÂ enlarged on the photocopierÂ then pastedÂ on a Â Â large piece of particle board.Â Â As theÂ photos were not all the sameÂ Â size they overlapped.Â TheÂ board was then sprayed with Â Â a clear sealant.Â Â ItÂ would make a wonderful activity for children.
4. Visit the grave.
Let this time be a positive reflection,Â not occasions for sadness.Â You might find it comforting to voice your thoughts and Â Â feelings to the loved one.Â If you have children present make sure that they understand that this is not "contacting" theÂ Â Â person but rather theÂ expression of comforting oneself.
5. Establish a commemorative tradition in the community.
Create a scholarship fund at your local school,Â give a trophy toÂ a football team,Â maintain a flower bed in yourÂ Â neighbourhood or city .........these are all uplifting and lasting ways toÂ commemorateÂ the deceased.
Commemoration is a vital part of healing and recovery.Â It promotes acceptance of the loss and helps the survivors move forward. There is no longer any room for guilt, remorse, or regret.Â Instead we are filled with love and peace.
I will leave youÂ with a prayer written in 1934 by Reinhold Niebuhr
God, grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change,
Courage to change the things we can,
And wisdom to now the difference.