"The best and most beautiful things cannot be seen or even touched—they must be felt with the heart."
~ Helen Keller
Each day of our lives we have simple rituals like reading the paper while having a coffee, feeding the dog, or watching a favourite TV show. These simple rituals give our lives structure, familiarity, and comfort. Special rituals like birthdays and holidays also give us direction and comfort. We come to rely on personal holiday traditions and look forward to them every year.
When someone dies, special times of the year and holiday rituals may be deeply affected. The loss may change the things you do during these occasions. If you’ve experienced a recent death of a family member or friend, holidays and special occasions can be reminders of your loss. While going through these occasions the first time, you may feel that things are different or uncertain. As time goes on you’ll learn new coping skills that will give you safety and comfort.
Recognize that the person’s absence may be painful for you no matter what you do. This is normal. Try to balance this with your love for the people in your life and your positive memories of the person you’ve lost. It's better to plan ahead than to wait and see how things go. Try these ideas to plan ahead:
Current as of: June 29, 2015
Author: Addiction & Mental Health, Alberta Health Services
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