Losing a parent is something nobody is ever fully prepared for.
Whether your parent passed away many years ago or just recently, was a sudden loss out of the blue or was something you soon expected, life is never quite the same ever again.
Finding something that can help process the grief after you experience such a loss can help you move forward and live your life the way your parent would’ve wanted.
One thing that can assist you with your grief journey is honouring and memorialising the parent you loved so dearly in an authentic way.
It will help keep their memory alive while acting as a reminder of your appreciation for all that they did and will continue to do, as they will no doubt have an influence on you for the rest of your own life.
Below, you’ll find 3 thoughtful ways to honour the life and legacy of your parent.
1. Continue Close Ties with Family Members
Parents are often considered to be the glue that bonds the extended family together.
As we grow older the reason many people still see their aunts, uncles, cousins etc. is because parents organise get-togethers.
Whether it’s festive Christmas visits, meet-ups to celebrate a birthday or a big garden barbecue in the summer, it’s often with thanks to our parents.
The loss of a parent might change this family dynamic and it’s easy for relationships with extended family members to slowly drift.
This can be addressed with a promise to make an extra effort in whichever way seems genuine – be it more phone calls, regular visits or meet ups, meals out, or taking vacations together.
We must also remember our relationship with a surviving parent.
Have open conversations with them when the time feels right about how you can support each other, and hopefully carry out family traditions while remaining connected with other family members.
This will help you transition into your new way of life since the passing of your parent, all while keeping their memory alive across the family and strengthening bonds just as your parent would surely have wanted.
2. Leave A Memorial in their Memory
Having a unique memorial created and installed, such as a headstone or cremation memorial, is one of the most popular ways to honour and remember the life of a loved one.
Many of us will have parents who request to be laid to rest together in the same burial plot, and in these instances it’s possible to create a memorial that is designed to accommodate details and a message for each parent.
Memorials are often designed in open book styles or as two hearts to honour each parent, and with such a range of designs, stone materials and inscription or memorial etching options available it has never been easier to craft a bespoke memorial that reflects the character and personality of a loved one.
Other memorial options that you may want to keep at home to honour a parent could include things such as candles and memorial vases, jewellery or other sentimental items that contain ashes, or memorial plaques that can be placed either inside or outside your home.
Some families opt to plant a tree in the garden in their memory.
The creative options available to honour a loved one run far and wide.
Away from the home, other than headstones at their burial plot, some people choose to install a memorial bench at a favourite location (though the necessary approval will be required) or sponsor a tree in a woodland in their memory.
3. Don’t Stop Celebrating Important Dates
Dates that we used to celebrate with a parent, such as Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, birthday’s, Christmas, or important dates that bring back memories, as well as dates that now have significance, such as the anniversary of their death, can suddenly become difficult and emotional to get through once a parent has passed.
Even if you lean on the strength of other family members and close friends, the day can still be especially hard to celebrate.
Chances are these dates bring back fond memories when you think back to the times you shared with your parent.
Even though they are no longer around to celebrate them with you, these dates would’ve been just as important to them, so maintaining that connection and realising how much it would mean to your parent for them to know that you continue the happy times of celebration is a powerful thing.
So much so, it can act as a healthy and healing outlet for your grief.
Here at Thornhill Memorials, our expert memorial stonemasons craft a wide range of beautiful long-lasting memorials to help you honour your loved ones. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help, don’t hesitate to book yourself an appointment so that we can discuss your needs. You can contact us by calling 02920 689 595, e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by completing our online contact form.