When someone is bereaving the loss of his or her loved one, it is difficult to watch that person in pain, guilt, frustration or anxiety. We are unsure of what to do or say. The best thing to do is to be there for that person, to listen and understand his or her grief. Nothing you do can rid the sadness and disappointment in that person's life. But there is something you can do that can comfort them, somewhat, something that will remind them of all the well-wishers in their life, something to show them, everyone cares―bereavement gifts.
Plants: A plant can never replace a loved one, but it can definitely remind the bereaved that life goes on. After every end is another opportunity to begin all over. A plant in memory of the loved one can be a perfect bereavement gift, and taking care of and nurturing the plant can give the person dealing with it something to take his or her mind off the grief.
Pets: Similar to plants, a puppy or a kitten cannot replace a loved one. However, the inclusion of a new member in the family, even in the form of a pet, can be welcome by those who are bereaved. Taking care of a pet can keep them occupied, and at least temporarily make them forget about their sorrow.
Collection of Photographs: If you knew the one who has passed, giving his or her loved one a collection of photographs of that person in happy times is sure to cheer up your friend. It will remind him/her that the one who has gone lived life to the fullest, enjoyed it completely, and was genuinely happy about being able to do so.
Journal: Some people prefer to express their feelings through writing, rather than speaking about them. If your bereaved friend is one such person, give him/her a journal to vent sad yet angry feelings. To personalize it, you could write some relevant quotes on each page, to remind them that despite their anger and sorrow, life moves on. Another way to use a journal is to pass it around among friends and family, and have each one of them document their favorite memory of the one who has passed away, and present it to the bereaved. This is sure to bring a smile on his/her face.
Spiritual Gifts: If your bereaved loved one is spiritually inclined, give him/her a CD that has spiritual music, and healing mantras and chants, that will cleanse the mind and calm the senses. The inclusion of spirituality in life also rids it of all negative emotions, and allows for a general sense of calm to prevail. A good book on spirituality is also a good way to help them deal with the loss of their loved one.
Gift Basket: With a gift basket, you can give your bereaved friend a little bit of everything. You can pop in a journal, with some photographs, some gourmet coffee, and perhaps a shawl. Other things that you can add in the basket are some framed bereavement poems or sympathy sayings. Put it all together and complete it with a nice, consoling message.
These gifts are sure to make your loved one feel that all is not lost and there are still people in this world who are concerned, and who care. The purpose is to cheer someone up, and if not enhance, at least bring him/her some happiness in a small way.