How to Honor a Deceased Family Member on Their Birthday

How to Honor a Deceased Family Member on Their BirthdayLosing someone you love is very painful. Although deep grief should not normally last for more than a year, it is natural to feel sad on the deceased person's birthday no matter how many years have passed. To overcome this sadness, find positive ways to honor a deceased family member on their birthday.

Visit their grave. The tradition of visiting the graves of deceased relatives and ancestors exists in many cultures. If your culture supports or even encourages this tradition, you can honor your deceased family member on their birthday by visiting their grave and bringing some flowers... or something else. Jews, for example, place small stones or pebbles on graves to honor the deceased. Feel free to cry or talk to your deceased loved one, bottling your feelings up is unhealthy.

Gather their friends and family. We aren't saying that you should throw a party with balloons and cake. A small gathering of closest friends and family will be enough to pay tribute to a deceased loved one on their birthday. You can have a potluck dinner or a backyard BBQ, meet at the deceased person's favorite restaurant, etc. The point of this gathering is not to grieve but to share your favorite memories and tell the stories about the person's life. Reminisce about good things and don't focus on the feeling of sadness.

Do something they liked. You can cook their favorite dish, watch their favorite movie, read their favorite book, engage in their favorite pastime, etc. It will help you feel closer to the passed person even though they are not around anymore. You can do it alone or ask other family members to join you, whatever you are comfortable with.

Do something good. Honor your deceased family member by brightening another's day and helping those who need it. Random acts of kindness, volunteering and other selfless acts will both distract you from your sad thoughts and make the world a better place. Do something good and think, “[Deceased person's name] would be proud of me!” And when their birthday ends, just keep on doing good.

Write a letter or a journal entry. Some people find it hard to talk about their deceased loved ones even if many years have passed since their death. You don't have to talk, but you shouldn't keep your feelings, emotions, memories, and thoughts bottled up. Writing a journal entry or a letter that no one will ever read will help you share your feelings and memories without actually sharing them with someone in particular.



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