let the healing begin
I lost my brother 3 years ago just one month shy of his 19th birthday. He lived with me at the time of the accident, and I took it very hard. If only I had been home, if only I hadn't asked him to move in with me, if only......he would still be alive today. My heart just ached terribly. My pastor helped me to look at it from the other perspective. If I hadn't asked my brother to move in with me, than I never would have gotten to know the man he was becoming. God gave both of us the opportunity to make that happen. If I had been home it still would have happened, and I would have seen it. God spared me the sight of seeing my brother on fire. Once I learned how to change my "thoughts" and turn them into positives, the healing began.
My dear friend recommended making a scrapbook CELEBRATING his life and telling the stories each photo brings. I did this for 2 reasons. #1, I wanted my daughter (I was 5 months pregnant when he died) to know who her uncle was and what he stood for, and #2 I wanted something that was personal for me. No one can take my memories from me!
I have made scrapbooks for friends who have lost a loved one, and have seen the tears they bring, but I have also seen the start of healing when they start to journal their stories of the photographs.
I am not saying it was easy. I cried many a times during the making of that album. I laughed at some of the photos and the stories, and than I cried because I missed him. But I didn't let that stop me from completing my album.
3 years later, I pull out that album and recapture those moments with him. I also later added journaling about my favorite things we did together, funniest moments, stories about when we were growing up.
I am sure I am rambling, but I just wanted to let you know the methods I used to begin the healing process.