Dreading Anniversary Dates


After losing a loved one, specific dates will stand out from the others. These dates can bring about an overwhelming sense of anxiety and sadness. The dates of when an illness was diagnosed or an accident that happened, a birthday, or the day they passed away, are some of the triggers for many grievers. The season in which these things happened can also bring about uncomfortable feelings, because they often bring along reminders. The smell of the air, the color of the leaves, the weather, etc.

My son was born in December and passed away in January. While the world was happily shopping for Christmas presents and going to holiday parties, I was begging for God to save my son’s life. Christmas has never been the same since, and it has been almost twelve years since he gained his angel wings.

Some people will find themselves obsessing over the significant dates that are drawing near by doing a mental countdown. In the beginning, I would obsess over the exact time of day my son passed away. I would look at the clock every day at that time and start crying. This happened for the first few weeks, then it spread out more. I would find myself thinking of the day of the week that he died, and before I knew it, I was counting the months. Now, I have counted many years, but the holiday season still gets to me.

Every year on my son’s birthday, I get helium balloons and my husband, daughter and I all staple little notes to the bottom. We sing “Happy Birthday” to him, and release them. We watch them until they disappear in the sky. I always have a small cake with candles and we blow them out together. I still want to include my child in our life, and that is what works for us. Everyone has something special that they could turn into a memorial tradition on these difficult dates. If you aren’t sure what to do, sit down with the family and talk about of some special ideas that would be meaningful for everyone.

On the anniversary of a loved one’s passing, making a donation in their name is a nice acknowledgement, and it helps others as well. You can donate to a child in need, an organization for a specific illness, or even donate your time. Many people who have lost a child collect teddy bears from friends and family, and give them to the sick children in the hospital.

Whatever you choose to do, just know that it is normal to fall to pieces during these significant dates. Don’t be afraid to reach out to family and friends for comfort, or to take extra time to be alone in your thoughts. Support groups are also very helpful during these hard days. You can find a list of various resources and support on the tab at the top of this page.

My wish for you is comfort and peace during these difficult times.

Tips and strategies to help you heal from the shock and desperation from losing someone you love. Also included are true stories from others who have walked the journey of grief, and how they have overcome the raw emotions that accompany the death of a loved one
About LM 86 Articles
In tribute to her son's passing, Lora C Mercado has been on a quest to help bring peace to those who are in a state of grief with her healing and inspirational books. She is also the founder of the website, HealingTheGrief.com, which provides articles and resources to help one cope with grief and loss. "Our Angels Await, Stories of Love from Beyond", includes true stories from people across the globe who have had connections with loved ones who have passed away. "Adjusting to Life After Loss, Coping with the Death of a Loved One and Honoring Their Memory", was released in October 2014. The second book in the series, "Adjusting to Life After the Loss of a Child, Coping, Healing and Understanding the Emotions of Grief" was released in January 2015. You may also enjoy her two latest books: "Healing Grief through Meditation: A Guide to Spiritual Wellness for the Bereaved" and "365 Quotes of Comfort for the Bereaved: A Year of Daily Inspiration to Heal Your Heart" Lora Mercado is also a Usui Reiki Master Practitioner and ordained minister.

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