When you have loved and lost there isn't a second that goes by that you don't think about them, or feel your loss or remember something significant that reminds you of times together. If you truly understand loss, grief and remembrance you understand that there is no need for a national day to remember.
And that is why it's important to understand that the National Day of Reflection, whilst focussing on remembering lost loved ones, is more about how we do that. Instead of trying to get through each day whilst remembering, it's about really taking a moment for yourself, taking time out, stopping every day life and truly inwardly reflecting on the impact of that loss. It's about considering how you and those are around you are coping and really giving your mind and soul the chance to grieve properly.
"Time's a great healer" and "you learn to deal or live with it" or "the circle of grief doesn't shrink but joy in life around it grows" are sentiments that may have some relevance but today, Thursday 23rd March isn't about getting on with it, being brave or coping.
It's ok to grieve.
Let's be clear and say it - losing someone you love is shit.
It never leaves.
There's a void.
There's a pain that yes you do learn to live with, but that never really leaves your heart.
And in acknowledging that, it is one of the first steps and best things you can do for yourself today.
Relax and rest your body and mind.
Do whatever makes you feel the most comfort or relaxation.
Plan to take time out to indulge in your memories.
Find somewhere you can be on your own.
Visit a place that's usually too painful.
Open a memory box that is guaranteed to make you roar.
Spray a perfume or wear a shirt that you savour the smell or feel of and usually hide away.
Flick through photos, videos, voice notes.
But whatever you do, gift yourself the time to grieve.
You never forget them, but how often do you remember them?
I'll be pouring a cup of tea into the mug I always used at my Granma's house. After all these years since I lost her, the mug is getting tired so it's usually safely tucked away to protect it.
Today, I'm going to indulge myself in my precious memories of her.
Drag out thoughts I usually quash just to get through the day.
Encourage memories and tears to flow because every now and then it's good to let go, let it all out and let yourself grieve for them.
And that's OK to admit.
So congratulations and well done to @mariecurieuk for creating National Day of Reflection to give us all that focus and encouragement to let go.
The Lovely Keepsake Company is proud this year, 2023, to support @dovehousehospice creating their Book of Reflection.
Reflecting will be good for you. Who cares if it sounds strange? Embracing those joyful yet painful memories will leave you feeling refreshed and comforted.
National Day of Reflection 2023. Rest, Remember, Reflect.