Dealing with the anniversary of a death



  • drvvork
    drvvork Posts: 1,162
    no flowers or card- thats for when the person just died. As a friend, I'd just pick up the phone and call...just talk to them, ask how they are doing. Just show that you care. Anything else is overdoing it.

    I agree with this. I lost my daughter to a disease last August and would feel as though someone was 'celebrating' her passing. A phone call, a posting on social network, a personal visit - letting your friend know you are their for support. :flowerforyou:
  • fuzzball01
    fuzzball01 Posts: 105 Member
    Just be there for her. I will be going thru my moms one yr anniversary of passing on July 15th. If it was me, I would want my friends to be just there and listen. she will want to talk and cry. Just being there will mean the world to her. Bless you for an awesome friend
  • wineplease
    wineplease Posts: 469 Member
    I think a card is fine. You can call, too. What I do for close friends or family is let them know in the card that I sent flowers to the cemetery (assuming she was buried). I call the cemetery and ask how to send flowers for the graves. But, I'm Catholic, so this may seem creepy to others!
  • vixtris
    vixtris Posts: 688 Member
    no flowers or card- thats for when the person just died. As a friend, I'd just pick up the phone and call...just talk to them, ask how they are doing. Just show that you care. Anything else is overdoing it.
    I agree with this guy.
  • AmyMgetsfit
    AmyMgetsfit Posts: 636 Member
    I lost my youngest daughter at 21 years old 10 years ago. Our local news paper kept a memorial page going for the first 5 years. Friends and family would leave messages on there on her birthday and the anniversary date she left us. The first year we received cards and flowers and a fruit bouquet and even a balloon release by her friends. Over the years things have ceased. My 2 older daughters do facebook and always receive messages from from friends and family on the special days. I don't do facebook, so I don't get the messages personally. I think anything you do to show her that you are thinking of her will be much appreciated.
  • Rocknut53
    Rocknut53 Posts: 1,794 Member
    I have experience with this as the one grieving. I can say that everyone is different so it is hard to know what the "right" thing would be.

    A bunch of flowers picked from your garden tied with ribbons and on each ribbon something written, like the girl's birthdate, the date of her graduation etc.

    Sharing your memories or observations of her daughter or the mother/daughter relationship, whether by verse, letter, card, or chat.

    Offering to go with her to the cemetary or wherever and do something special.

    A rose or other plant which bears a name that has relevance to the daughter or occasion. For example I was given a rose bush called Compassion.

    A treat pack for relaxing.

    Do you have any photos of the girl which the mother might not? Wrap them with a ribbon, insert with a card or make a little album. Make copies of the photos if you don't want to give the originals away.

    She might just want to get away from everything familiar. I did on the first anniversary of my husband's death, so I went on a 3 week overseas holiday. A fuel voucher or offering to babysit if she has other children so she can have some time for herself could be appropriate.

    I hope that helps inspire you in some way. Bless your heart for wanting to be so sensitive to your friend's situation.

    There is never a right answer for this, but this seems to be the best. My son's best friend was killed in a motor cycle accident 20 years ago in June and I still acknowledge him, not only on the day he died, but also on his birthday, with a phone call or a special posting to his mom on Facebook. I created a page dedicated to him on FB and it amazes me how many people have joined and post pictures and memories of this special young man that left us way too early.
  • M______
    M______ Posts: 288 Member
    I lost my sister 2 years ago on the 18th may. Every day and event was its own difficult challenge but the first anniversary especially brought a lot of memories flooding back. On that day in particular I couldn't help but continuously focus on what I was doing 1 year ago. Doing something for your friend would be a lovely gesture, flowers would be a nice idea. Lots of family and friends sent my family flowers and they really helped to brighten the house up which was nice.

    I would say flowers, even if other people send some flowers it doesn't matter. They will let your friend know that Kayla and the family are on your minds.
  • 123dmc
    123dmc Posts: 13
    Pick up the phone and call her on the day. Tell her you are thinking about her and her daughter (one of the big things is worrying that no one will remember your loved one). Let her talk and cry. And cry with her.

    Super advice. One of my dearest friends calls me every year on the anniversary of my brother's passing. It means so much to me. She doesn't get into a big conversation, just reminds me that she's thinking of me and my family on that day. I agree, one of the worst things is that "everyone else has moved on" yet here you are, your heart breaking all over again. And I do still get cards from a few friends -- eight years later.

    I agree with the no flowers policy. I personally dislike flowers in this instance immensely, as they remind me of death and grieving.

    You are a thoughtful friend!
  • auroranflash
    auroranflash Posts: 3,569 Member
    Such a kind friend. I wish you and her the best. Just call and be there.
  • newlyf
    newlyf Posts: 20 Member
    When the one year anniversary of the death of my dear brother came mother was grieving. What truly bothered her the most was people that knew her were carrying on with their lives and wouldn't even bring up my brother's name in front of her for fear that they would be bringing up bad memories and causing her more pain. When you lose someone precious to you to need to be able to talk about that person freely with your friends and loved ones. You need to know that other people care and remember, too. On the anniversary of my brother's death...I sent my precious mother a dozen white roses in a beautiful vase with a card attached that read "I just wanted you to know that I'm thinking about Chuck today just as I know that you are. He was such a beautiful man raised by an even more beautiful mother. I love you. If you need me...I'm only a phone call away." She called me just boo hooing...not because she was sad...but because someone else remembered, too. Then we spent a good hour on the phone talking about wonderful memories of my brother...her son. She seemed like the weight of the world had been lifted off of her shoulders. Priceless!!

    I hope this helps.....
  • dmpizza
    dmpizza Posts: 3,322 Member
    I would not acknowledge the date, unless you really really know she does things like that. Touch base with her now, and then near tat date, just to say hi.

    She WILL be sad, there is no way to stop that.
  • PetulantOne
    PetulantOne Posts: 2,131 Member
    I would also say just call her. Make sure she knows she can lean on you. I'm so sorry..
  • weevil66
    weevil66 Posts: 600 Member
    Be there for your friend, call her, stop by if you feel it is right. If she wants to talk, cry, sit there in silence with you, let her. If she wants to be alone, understand. If you want to send a card or something along those lines, perhaps a handwritten one. These 'firsts' are effin g-dmned awful. Bless you for wanting to be there for your friend.
  • _chiaroscuro
    _chiaroscuro Posts: 1,340 Member
    Without going into details I will say I've been in the position of trying to see someone through unimaginable loss and grief. Sometimes you feel like a bad friend because nothing you do can take away that pain. But that's not your job. Your job is to simply be available. Be present, in whatever capacity you're needed. The time I felt I did the most good was sitting for hours, holding hands and wiping tears and not saying a word of comfort or wisdom. Just hurting, but knowing we loved each other and that was enough. I am very sorry for the tragedy that has touched your lives and taken someone too soon.
  • ImNotThatBob
    ImNotThatBob Posts: 371 Member
    PomegranatePriestess said:
    If there is a charity organization that would make sense, you could make a donation in Kayla's honor and have the notification sent to your friend.

    It let's her know you care and are doing something to help others in her honor and memory.

    Losing someone is a constant struggle between missing what was / what could have been, and worrying about memories fading. Then there is the question, "Why?" especially in such a senseless situation.

    "I'm here for you" always worked better for me than "How are you doing".

    Follow your heart. You'll know what your friend needs from you.
  • Elleinnz
    Elleinnz Posts: 1,678 Member
    On my nephew's one year passing on I bought my brother and sister in law two olive trees that they could plant in their garden in remembrance of Richard. He loved olives, so it was an acknowledgement that he will always be part of our lives....
  • divinenanny
    divinenanny Posts: 90 Member
    I just want to say that for some people, a card or flowers can be right.

    I lost my father when I was 14, and I am never one for talking about emotions (just with DH). If someone calls on that day, I don't find it as comforting as most. A card lets somebody know that you are thinking of them, empathising with them, but gives them space to do their own thing.

    Not saying that this is right for you friend, or for anybody else, just wanted to share what I found (and still find) comforting.
  • Spokez70
    Spokez70 Posts: 548 Member
    Don't be offended if she is a little antisocial around the date. Let your friend know you remember and that you are thinking about her- not just this year but in the future. The first anniversary of a horrible personal tragedy like that everyone remembers. In five or ten years most everyone elses memory has faded and they've moved on with their lives- but it will still be immensely painful for her so always just let her know you remember and are there for her.
  • mikeschratz
    mikeschratz Posts: 253 Member
    I have a friend who lost his son on May 21st, every year we do a poker run and the proceeds from the poker run go to a community organization fighting senseless violence here in Savannah, GA.
    The poker run is done with family and friends, not too many outsiders, and we collect about $1000 dollars every year to give to the organization. With that, it gets folks together with my friend and keeps them in the moment, with quite a bit of support from loving family and friends.
    You and your friend will be in my prayers, it is a hard thing to watch my friend go through every year, but year by year he is getting better with the dealing part.
    Be good to God's kids today,
  • Kyrosh
    Kyrosh Posts: 238
    One of my friends was Meredith Kercher. The girl who was killed in Perugia, Italy.

    Her sister set up a Facebook page for her and there are so many people who post on there. Not only on her birthday or day of death, but also just throughout the year, just to say 'I'm thinking of you'.
    She has a website set up in her memory and for her parents to be able to pay all the legal bills etc...

    What I do every year is just light a candle for her. But I still think of her throughout the year anyway, especially when new news comes out.