Henry-Cameron Allen, CTAA, IHTCP
Internationally Certified Grief & Survival Counselor,
LTC Founder, Papa Peregrine
The final Sunday of August marks the Annual International Peregrine Father's Day. Unlike the other one, this day is not often experienced with feelings of celebration and joviality. For so many Peregrines, this is another day in a heap of heavy year-round milestones.
I am often asked by clients and others, what are some ways to endure these weighty days? Here are ten rituals to contemplate doing today on Peregrine Father's Day, or for any milestone throughout the year; birthdays, memorial days, traditional holidays, or just a regular Tuesday... to honor and remember your child. These rituals can be customized, and done alone or with others:
Light a candle in your child's memory. This represents their life and spirit that can not be extinguished. Create a small shrine, and give it a place of honor in your home. It will bring you comfort every day.
Make your child's favorite meal or dessert. Enjoy this in their honor. Share this with friends and make time to remember and share stories.
Visit your child's gravesite or a special place and leave flowers or a memento. Spend quiet time in reflection.
Get creative! A memory box or album with keepsakes, photos, and your child's treasures will be very meaningful. Shadow boxes can hang on your wall, and can become a kind of special "museum."
Release butterflies, paper lanterns, or bottle rockets, and watch them fly up to the heavens.
Plant a tree or dedicate a garden in your child's name. This represents their enduring spirit, and helps you care for something beautiful and living in memory of your child.
Donate to a charity important to your child. Channel your grief into goodness in their name. Volunteerism is another way to honor your child.
Stargaze, walk in nature, go to places of breathtaking beauty. The veil will feel thinner. Reminisce about happy times.
Get yourself a journal (or make one) and write a letter to your child on every milestone, expressing how you feel. Use it to write down every dream you have with your child, or signs you've experienced. This can be so healing, and will become a treasured keepsake and heirloom.
Travel! Visit places you have never been before. Commemorating your child's life in this way will open your mind, body and spirit in ways that you never expected. Bring a photo of your child with you so you can share the journey with them.