Guard Your Heart

February 04, 2020 By Emilie Smith, LPC

February is the month for hearts.

It’s the month that we send Valentines and celebrate love in all of its forms. But for someone who is grieving it can also be the month when we run smack dab into the center of our sadness. It can stir up memories of beautiful times, but times passed. It can also stir up hopes and wishes for love unfulfilled or opportunities missed. And just like Thanksgiving and Christmas which we just experienced, Valentine’s Day cannot be avoided. We see it talked about in sappy commercials, decorations at the mall, cards on the card rack of any store, and even when we shop for groceries.

So, how do you take care of your heart?

When you miss someone who is gone it is hard not to “feel.” In fact, we don’t really want to stop feeling. So what do you do to take care of yourself and honor the love that you feel for someone who isn’t here?

This is in some ways an everyday question, because every day you encounter their being elsewhere. But for this month how about trying something different. Let this list serve as your inspiration for the month:

  • Try writing them a letter telling them how much you love them and what they mean to you.
  • Try buying a gift and giving it to someone else that you care deeply for.
  • Try giving valentines to people who you care for, saying what you always wanted to say but didn’t get a chance to say to the one who is gone. Share your love with others.
  • Do something artistic, even if you don’t consider yourself “artistic.” Make a valentine for them.
  • Foster gratitude: Make a list every day of the month of 5 things that you are grateful for. Read the entire list on the 29th day of the month. Yes, it is a leap year!
  • Celebrate Leap Year by asking someone else to go somewhere with you, to lunch, a movie, dinner, or for a walk.
  • Most of all, take care of YOUR heart. It is precious, and I suspect that the one who you lost would agree.