How can I commemorate a loved one?

If you would like to commemorate someone but aren't sure where to start, the suggestions that follow may be helpful:
  • Artwork. You might use art to explore your feelings, chronicle the life of the person who died, or express your ideas of an afterlife, if any. Children struggling with grief may find creating art—whether it's with clay, colored pens, paints, or collage supplies—particularly helpful. A memory quilt incorporating meaningful scenes and fabrics may be especially comforting.
  • A journal. Create a journal memorializing your loved one's life. Or try making a timeline of important dates and doings. Paste pictures in the journal and write down stories, remembered sayings, and well-loved recipes. You might invite friends and family to write down stories, thoughts, or what they loved best about the person who died, especially if people are gathering for a memorial service or funeral. You may also want to share these stories with friends and family.
  • A memory box. Pictures, objects, and art supplies can be brought together to make a memory box for display or keepsakes. When you're ready to go through belongings, set aside items for a memory box.
  • A slide show. Favorite pictures and songs or sayings can be melded into a poignant multimedia remembrance of a life. Old videos can be revived and spliced together, then copied on DVDs for others to enjoy. Your local video or photo shop or a technology-minded friend or family member may be able to help with these projects.
  • A photo wall. Create a remembrance wall or collage of photos taken at different times and events.
  • A good cause. Violence prevention, medical research, peace efforts, scholarship funds, and many other causes have been taken up to honor someone's memory. Think about how the person you love would want to be remembered in the world.
  • A peaceful spot. Create a peaceful nook with a comfortable chair, lighting, photos, inspirational books, or other important objects in honor of your loved one. Build a serene spot with a fountain outside in your garden. Walk regularly through a nature preserve, or visit a spot your friend or family member particularly enjoyed.
  • A garden. Planting a garden or a tree can be a wonderful way to remember someone. You might want to offer flowers from the garden to others for their enjoyment or put them in an arrangement that you can bring to the cemetery.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.