The winter season holidays cause a lot of people to think of those that have passed and the ones left behind. But Valentine's Day is probably the hardest to get through following the loss of a loved one with all of the heart-shaped jewelry, chocolates, and romantic dinner campaigns pushing romance and couple-hood. All of the in-your-face advertising makes you painfully aware that you are now no longer a part of a pair. Here are some thoughts for coping with this grief on Valentine's Day.
Journal your journey through the grieving process. Buy a special book to record your private thoughts and feelings. It is one of the best ways to release grief. Journaling is for your eyes only and enables you to express exactly what you need to and not worry about censoring yourself. It is a safe place to vent and mourn. Journaling is also a great way to monitor your healing progress in that you can look back and see how far you have come over time. Seeing your words on paper also helps you keep clear memories of your loved one.
Making a Memory Box is a special way to cope with grief that can be done privately or as a family. Use a shoebox or small box and decorate it with pictures, beads, glitter, shells, ribbons, paints, or anything that holds memories. Inside the box put things that remind you of your loved one. It is a good place to add a little note of why an item is so special or a note to your loved one. My grandfather always carried bubble gum for kids of all ages and he was well known for it throughout the county. So a note explaining that made a penny piece of gum a memory.&n
For generations upon generations, history has been passed down through story telling. One way to help the family cope with grief is to make a time to come together to share stories of a lost love one. Special anniversaries or holidays are some opportunities to tell about the impact and meaning the deceased has had in their lifetime. Stories help you treasure the memories and pass on important messages to others of all generations. It is a chance to laugh together and cry together and hold each other close in support and care. Love shines through unique tales.&n
In a situation where sympathy gifts are proper but not requested, many people bring flowers. Though flowers are a beautiful and honest gesture, they have a short life and serve little, practical purpose. Billions of dollars are spent annually in the United States on sympathy flowers and up to 86% of flowers that are purchased annually are gifts for non-calendar holidays, such as deaths.
Do you struggle with creating the perfect sympathy message for your sympathy card? The most important thing to remember when writing your message is to make it sincere and from the heart. Many times, we have nothing but the best intentions for our sympathy message but we end up saying the wrong thing. Also, please remember that it is okay to keep your sympathy message short and sweet.
A few examples of an appropriate sympathy message:
Expressing words of sympathy can be difficult and we often find ourselves at a loss for words. If you cannot find the appropriate words of sympathy, consider using a sympathy quote to express your sympathy message. Here are a few of our favorite, appropriate sympathy quotes:
When expressing your words of sympathy to your friend, loved one or co-worker, consider writing your thoughtful words on a sympathy card. Because a death is such a sensitive time for the person experiencing the loss, expressing your sympathy message in a sympathy card will allow you to better construct your thoughts so you don't end up in an uncomfortable conversation.
Sometimes all it takes is an idea to change an entire industry, and that is exactly what David Storke did. After spending years as a Funeral Director and owner of Storke Funeral Home in Bowling Green, VA, Storke came to realize that, while flowers are a beautiful gift for a grieving loved one, they don't go far beyond their aesthetically pleasing role. He saw the need for a comforting alternative to flowers.
Do you know the interesting history behind flowers at a funeral? Flowers once had a very practical use at funerals. Before embalming became a common procedure, flowers were used to mask the odor of the decomposing body. While flowers are still an expression of sympathy and a way to show you are thinking of your grieving loved one, today, there is not a practical use beyond their beauty.