Keeping Family Traditions Alive After the Loss of a Loved One

The loss of a dear loved one, regardless if it is recent or if it occurred long ago, can be devastating. One way to manage the grief and help with the healing process is to keep family traditions alive that remind you of the special person who is no longer in your life.

“Celebrating family traditions is a very important part of life and makes every family unique,” explained John Adolf, Director of Adolf Funeral Services. “The loss of a beloved family member is never easy, but celebrating associated traditions is a way to always keep those people with you and in your heart.”

Start by making a list of all the things you loved to do with them, no matter how big or small the activity. Keep a special calendar so you don’t miss any important dates; you can even post some traditions on a family social media page so others can contribute to it if they like. Make sure your traditions are documented somewhere so your children and their children can continue them throughout their lives. Did you spend a week at the beach every Spring Break? Did you visit a different National Park every summer? If possible, continue the events that mattered to you and that will bring you joy. Even small gestures like carving pumpkins, decorating a holiday tree, attending the concert of a favorite musician, or visiting a special restaurant on their birthday will help keep them in your heart.

While holidays can be especially emotionally difficult, remembering and carrying on those wonderful family traditions you celebrated in the past can help make the loss much less painful. “Remembering and honoring traditions, whatever they may be, is a wonderful healing mechanism when you’ve lost a loved one,” said Adolf. “One of my favorite pastors has a saying worth sharing: a loved one is never dead, until they’re forgotten.”

For more information, please contact:

Adolf Funeral Home & Cremation Services

John R. Adolf, Director

7000 South Madison Street

Willowbrook, IL 60527


2921 South Harlem Avenue

Berwyn, IL 60402