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Getting Through the First Deathversary


Lifestyle Improvement

Posted On: Mar 29, 2017

Getting Through the First Deathversary

Where an anniversary suggests a celebration, a deathversary marks a hollow, painful occasion that deserves a word of its own. Please read carefully, though: in time, you will be able to celebrate the life your loved one lived rather than mourning the very end of her or his bright light. It may not feel like that now, it may not feel that way after the second, fourth, or seventh death anniversary, but you will get there. How you get through the day, especially the very first year, will make all the difference in the way you cope from year to year.

Gift Yourself with Memories

The first year without your loved one, the day of their deathversary will hit you hard. You'll be bombarded with memories—so use them. Write down each memory on a piece of paper. Fold each slip and place it in a jar, a container, a bottle—some type of receptacle. On the second anniversary of your loved one's passing, you can read your memories from the year before and add new remembrances. Each year, write down the memories that hit you the hardest, then read the meaningful moments from previous years.

Spend Time with Your Loved One's Remains

Wherever your loved one's remains reside, spend time there. That may mean taking an urn or another receptacle to a meaningful place, or it might mean visiting a gravestone or mausoleum. You might need to visit the place where you released the departed's ashes. This is personal and will depend on you.  Still, of all days, this is one day when spending time with that final place and any lingering spirit is important. At the very least, it will soothe you.

Send Up a Sky Lantern

On this first deathversary, think about all the things you wanted to say but never had the opportunity to speak out loud. Write down all of them. At dusk, ignite a beautiful sky lantern, place each slip of paper into it, and let it go up into the heavens. The fire will consume your last words, and the light will float endlessly. Eventually, it will look a little like a shooting star, which is quite fitting.

This is such a hard day to get through, but you will get through it. Do things that enrich you, calm and comfort you, and make you feel at ease and in touch with the person you lost.