A tsunami of grief swept over me after my beloved Dad died this past February. In the months that followed I struggled to make sense of his passing and, although I still cannot, several activities helped me move toward a sense of acceptance and celebration of the time we did have together. I hope the following list helps someone who may be in a similar situation:
Ten things that helped me through the early grieving process: I…
1. Comforted my daughters who were struggling with my father’s absence as much as I.
2. Connected and reconnected with family members and friends who knew my Dad. They told me many wonderful stories that I had not heard before.
3. Searched through my family photos for some father-daughter images to frame and put on my laptop and iphone screen savers.
4. Read letters and postcards that I received from him when I was a child. I had forgotten he used to call me “Honey.”
5. Edited my telephone messages. I found a message where he called me by name and realized that listening to it is the only way I will ever hear him say my name again!
6. Engaged in repetitive activities such as walking (lots of walking), sudoku and solitaire games, and knitting.
7. Created art – sketching, doodling, digital photography, painting, and sculpture.
8. Listened to music – not soft, soulful songs but strong, energetic tunes by such artists as The Rolling Stones and Stevie Ray Vaughan.
9. Kept a journal – wrote about my Dad and how to make the time I have left on the planet more meaningful.
10. Baked his favorite desserts – apple pie and date squares.
You may like this past post about Ten Things My Father Taught Me.