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Pets have a special way of providing happiness and comfort, and many people consider them beloved members of their family. If you are facing the loss of a pet, know that it is perfectly acceptable to grieve however you need to. It will likely take time to get used to life without your animal companion. Some people might not understand the value or depth of your relationship with your pet, but there are many, many pet owners who do. Seek out support from others who can relate.
Losing a pet can be especially challenging for children. They become accustomed to feeling unconditional love from what is often one of their closest friends, so the grief they experience is very real. It is important to be honest but also sensitive about the situation. Encourage them to talk about their feelings and give them plenty of time to heal before rushing to bring home a new pet. Reading a book about losing a pet will also help them understand what has happened and reassure them it is OK to be sad.
For children and adults alike, it can be helpful to have some sort of service or memorial, even if that means simply gathering the family together for a few minutes so that each person can choose a photo of the pet to frame. It encourages everyone to remember all of the good times spent with their pet and feel comfort in knowing those memories will always be held close to their hearts.
Similar to writing an obituary, memorializing a loved one does not mean simply signifying their death. It is an opportunity to recognize, honor, and remember their life. Besides paying tribute to a life lived, memorialization is also incredibly important for those grieving the loss of that life. It can help loved ones come to terms with the loss while also providing a source of peace as they journey through grief.
There is certainly no right or wrong way to memorialize a loved one. For some, memorialization comes as an experience, such as recreating favorite vacation memories shared with the one who passed or gathering with family to play their favorite sport. It could be through giving back to others by sponsoring an organization, facilitating an annual memorial charity event, or setting up a scholarship fund in a loved one’s name, for example.
A physical reminder of a loved one’s life helps offer comfort and hope when needed most. Making a pillow with one of their shirts, planting their favorite flowers, or framing one of their handwritten recipes are just a few of the possibilities. Some of the options for memorialization using cremated remains include jewelry, glass sculptures, and garden ornaments.
But permanent memorialization, which means creating a lasting memorial that will be kept intact for generations, has immense value. Family and friends can gather there to mourn the death and celebrate the life of the individual, now and for years to come. The most common forms of permanent memorials are traditional monuments and markers used in a cemetery. With more people opting for cremation, many cemeteries also feature cremation benches or columbaria.
No matter which options you choose, the most important thing is that you memorialize a loved one in some way. Call us or stop in today. We can explain more of the memorialization possibilities available and help you decide what is best for you and your family.