How to overcome the fear of forgetting a loved one

Grief Support
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Fear of forgetting a departed loved one is a natural experience long after their passing, so you shouldn't feel ashamed if you have those feelings. Often, we mistakenly identify letting go with forgetting. You can do the former without the latter. After all, you will never forget any person who matters to you. But it is possible to make peace with their departure, and recognise that you have to continue your own life. Your memories of that special person will always live on in various ways — you might even do something to guarantee that, such as creating a Memories Timeline dedicated to their life, or making a video tribute.

In this article, we'll talk about some of the things we can do help to overcome the fear of forgetting a loved one.

1. Celebrate their life

Each time you feel lonely or sad, remember and celebrate the good memories you have of your departed loved one. A tribute photo book, a Memories Timeline, or a memorial video dedicated to your loved one will help immortalize their presence.

With a dedicated website such as a Memories Timeline, your loved one's family, friends and acquaintances may continually contribute the fond memories they have about the person. They may even continue sending those messages for years, as an expression of the care or love they have for the person who has passed away. Immediate family and relatives will find this very comforting and inspiring as they will be able to see how their departed loved one has touched the lives of others.

2. Support causes your loved one championed

One way to honor someone you've lost, and keep them alive in your memory, is to support the causes that person believed in. For example, if your loved one was an advocate of animal rights, then perhaps you can donate or contribute to an animal rights program under their name. The contribution doesn’t have to be monetary — you could also volunteer. This is a great way to continue the legacy of a loved one who has passed away. It’s also a positive way to remember the life he or she has lived.

3. Take up journaling

You can take up journaling, whether by hand or through blogging, in order to tell stories about your departed loved one, or express deep emotions you feel about their passing. Journaling can not only be an effective way to keep your loved one's memories alive, it can be therapeutic for you as well.

Journaling captures memories in a similar way that pressing the shutter button on a camera "freezes" time. This is one of the reasons why companies like Moleskine have grown in popularity over the past decade. Many of us have the urge to put pen to paper. We want to record our memories in a more natural and fluid way, and writing by hand is a feeling that typing on the laptop or tapping the screen of a phone can't replicate.

However, if you're a digital native, and would still prefer blogging, there are better, more private alternatives, than WordPress and its competitors. Unless you trust your network on social media, you may not be comfortable sharing personal thoughts on platforms like Facebook, which is notorious for privacy breaches, or Twitter and Instagram. So, what's an alternative solution?

You can create a Memories Timeline that will not only securely host all of the wonderful memories you have of your loved one, but gives you space to collaborate with close friends and loved ones, so that everyone gets a chance to tell the stories of their own memories.

4. Revisit the places they loved

Visit the places that your loved one enjoyed visiting when they were still alive. Take a walk or take a moment to recapture the things the person enjoyed doing in these places. You can also practice mindfulness exercises here to help you calm feelings of stress and anxiety that so often come along with grief.

This is the perfect time and place to reflect on and gently confront your fears of forgetting your loved one. Think about why these fears arise and contemplate the nature of time and memory. In particular, think about the transitory nature of life and the immortal nature of memories. Even if someone passed away long ago, their memory still lives on. The fact that you're visiting a place they loved during their lifetime is proof of that.

5. Name a star after them

Yes, you can name a star after a person. The International Star Registry records the star’s name and publishes it in a listing of named stars. This will remind you of your loved one every time you look up at the twinkling stars in the night sky.

You'll never forget

As you can see, there are many ways to over come the fear of forgetting a departed loved one, whether it's an activity you can take on or a more spiritual process of introspection.

However you choose to cope with their passing, remember that there is no wrong answer or path. What's important is that you cherish your loved one's memory whilst accepting the fact that your own life continues.