As we move into the new year, we always think about resolutions that we promise to accomplish. However, many people forget their resolutions after January. Resolutions, as they say, are "a dime a dozen," but when we look back over the past year, we recognize that people are not.
After losing someone, we reminisce and long for their presence, knowing that they will forever remain in our hearts, but not with us physically. It causes us to face the reality that they are forever gone and our lives are forever changed.
Thus, to be able to move forward with perseverance and hope, we must take time for remembrance. Look back over the pictures. Recall the good and bad memories that you experienced together. Weave those fond memories of your loved one into the fabric of your own life. Retell the stories so that future generations will know the characteristics of your loved one and the depth of the legacy that they left behind them.
Allow the loss that you experienced this year to cause you to love deeper and treasure other relationships that mean so much to you in your life. Don't allow their death to become a sea of constant regret, but allow it to spur you on to a greater depth of caring and compassion for your loved ones and others around you on a daily basis. Resolve this year to love deeper and to say those things that need to be said with a greater frequency—things like, "I love you," "I care," and "I'm sorry." Allow their memory to not only lead you to a greater depth of love, but also to encourage you in the coming year. Let it inspire you to keep putting one foot in front of the other, knowing that is exactly what your loved one would have wanted you to do.
It has been said that the past is gone and the present is indeed a present. It is a present that each of us is given with each new day. The new year is a present to remind us of our love for that special person and to remind us that life truly does go on and that we can choose how we live each day. In the words of that classic Scottish work from the 1700s: Should auld (old) acquaintance be forgot / And never brought to mind? / Should auld (old) acquaintance be forgot / And auld lang syne (long ago)?
Absolutely not! We must allow those memories to become a path steeped in love and grace, leading us to a life full of expectation, resolve and determination to live more fully each day.
—Saundra Yates, Bereavement Coordinator/Chaplain
Mountain Valley Hospice & Palliative Care offers free grief support to the community at large. For more information, contact us today toll-free at 1-888-789-2922.