We have been talking for a few weeks now about how hard a wedding can be after a loss and some ways to remember your loved one during your wedding. If you missed these posts, you can click here to check them out.
We can (and did) give you a ton of ideas to include, honor, and remember your loved one on your big day. We talked about how it is going to be tough. We reminded you that, even though it may feel like it, you are not alone. But there is one thing we just can’t do. We can’t change the fact that your loved one won’t be there to celebrate with you and share their words of wisdom.
I can’t count the number of times I have wondered what my dad would have said about something. At important moments in life, I wonder what advice he would have given me. Needless to say, a wedding is one of those times. It can be tough when the person we most wish was there, to share their wisdom and guidance, isn’t.
As with so many moments after a death, we can sit around and wallow (and don’t you worry, I am all for some good-old-fashioned wallowing every now and again) or we can do something productive to try to make things just a tad bit easier. In this case, you may be wondering what you could possibly do to know what advice your deceased parent, grandparent, or another friend may have shared. Don’t worry, the answer is not to call the Long Island Medium! There are several simple ways you can consider what your loved one might have said and find a little comfort before your big day.
- Think about advice they shared in other moments. The person we have lost is often someone we knew extremely well. There are moments we can often imagine exactly what they would say based on things they said in the past. Think about the advice you remember and consider how it might translate into wedding day advice.
- Read their words. This one might not apply to everyone, but if you have old letters, cards, an old journal, or emails from the person take some time to read them. You may find their words relate to this big moment. You may also find that reading their words will make it easier to consider what they would have said today.
- Ask others. Consider other people who may have received advice from your loved one in similar situations. If your sister got married before your mom died, she may be able to share the words of wisdom that your mom shared with her. Even if others may not have been in the exact same situation, they may have received other advice from the person or heard them say things that may be meaningful today.
Will this ever be the same as having your loved one there? Of course not. Not even close. But it can remind us that our loved one still lives on in the things we remember of them, their words that have stayed with us, and the ways so many people around us remember them.
Use this journal page to reflect on the things you think your loved one would have said, and the things you learn your loved one shared with others.
Print a wedding journal page.
Finally, make sure to appreciate those still here. It is easy to fixate on the one person who is gone, how much you miss them, and what they would have said. Don't forget to appreciate the many friends and family members who are still with you, sharing their own words of wisdom and helping to support you on your big day!
Today is the last post in our wedding series, so thanks for following along! Please share with us how you incorporated any of our suggestions in a comment, email, tweet, or on our Facebook page.
Check out more wedding resources:
- A Wedding Guide for Grievers: Tips for Remembering and Coping
- The First Wedding After a Death: My Little Sister Got Hitched
- Your Wedding After a Loss: Remembering at Receptions
- Your Wedding Day after a Loss
- Wedding Dress Shopping Without Mom
Want more grief journaling? Check out our 30-day Self-Guided Grief Journaling Intensive, or the following articles:
- 5 Benefits of Grief Journaling
- Continuing Bonds: A Grief Journal Exercise
- Growth from Grief (and a Journaling Exercise)
- Missing Moments & Letter Writing: A Journal Exercise
- Six-Word Stories, Statements, and Exclamations: A Journaling Exercise
- Support System Superlatives: A Journaling Exercise
- Love Your Regret
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We wrote a book!
After writing online articles for What’s Your Grief
for over a decade, we finally wrote a tangible,
What’s Your Grief? Lists to Help you Through Any Loss is for people experiencing any type of loss. This book discusses some of the most common grief experiences and breaks down psychological concepts to help you understand your thoughts and emotions. It also shares useful coping tools, and helps the reader reflect on their unique relationship with grief and loss.
You can find What’s Your Grief? Lists to Help you Through Any Loss wherever you buy books: