This year might be your first Father’s Day since losing your Dad, a beloved child or another important person in your life. Or maybe it’s been a while. Either way, Father’s Day can be tough when a piece of your heart’s puzzle is missing.

Here are three tips I hope might help:

Say What You Need to Say. 

As the weather starts to sizzle, you may be tempted to turn the AC to full blast and settle in for a little summer hibernation. While time alone is important, it’s easy to slip from healthy alone time to full on isolation.

After losing my mom, and then my dad a few short years later, my comfy safe place definitely became home, all by myself. Sadly, a steady diet of time alone can become a lonely place where you start believing the sneaky little voice whispering, “life will always be this painful,” or “nobody cares about you.” Don’t believe the lies!

It might be tough at first, but call someone. Let them know how you’re doing. Really. If you don’t have a friend, family or pastor close by, pray the Lord will send someone to walk alongside you. He’s awesome like that, and really does hear our prayers.

Stir up Memories. 
Since losing several of our finest family people, one of my favorite things about holidays has become telling and retelling their funny stories.

Did I mention my Dad was a free spirit… some might say a bit eccentric? Like the time he bought $1000 of black velvet “Elvis Art” from a street vendor, and tried to incorporate it into our living room decor? I know Dad was just trying to help a brother out, but seriously? All I can say is, “Thank you. Thank you very much.”

Another inspiring way to celebrate the person you’re missing is to invite friends on social media to share memories and photos. A fresh story or photo of your loved one will be pure gold!

Be Still.
Tomorrow morning, rather than hitting the ground running, would you take a few moments to be still? What would it look like to wake up up fifteen minutes early, find a quiet cozy place away from the noise and distraction, and spend the first precious moments of your day with the Lord? If you’re new to early morning quiet times, the (free!) YouVersion app offers thousands of excellent devotions, including the Grief Survivor 8 day study.

One last thing.

It was a great honor to be a guest recently on The Longest Dance Podcast with host, Colleen Kavanaugh. Colleen and I discussed holiday tips as well as embracing life after loss. We invite you to give it a listen for nuggets of encouragement and maybe even a few laughs.


Beth Marshall

Beth Marshall is a freelance journalist, speaker and author of two grief-related books. Grief Survivor, 28 Steps toward Hope and Healing; and A Time to Heal, a grief journal. After losing three close people in her life, Beth felt crushed and overwhelmed by the intense emotions of grief. As she began to write about her "uniquely awesome" family members, Marshall eventually began to smile again- and even laugh. Her hope is to help others discover joy-filled life after loss.

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