Revive Your Space After the Loss of a Loved One. This can be a key to moving on. Here are a few tips on how making small changes to your space will help you pick up the pieces after the loss of your spouse or loved one. There are some simple changes that help to create a fresh perspective and help you get going again. When you lose a spouse or a loved one, you lose more than that person. You lose a part of yourself. The grief process can be tough to work through, but you’ve got to do it.
As you make the changes to revive your space after the loss, whether you are making those changes in the kitchen or the bedroom remember you are not getting rid of the memories. What you are doing is creating a transition to the next chapter in your life. For some, it may involve a moving to a new home or apartment. A death and a move are both huge life events. But if you are staying in your home or apartment there are a few relatively easy, inexpensive, and cost-effective ways to update and revive your space.
Step 1: The first step to revive your space is to sort through, donate and get rid of stuff.
It is difficult to know how long to wait to go through your loved one’s possessions. I would dare say that it varies from person to person and situation to situation. My dad passed away in 2013 and my sister’s husband passed away in 2014. I have watched as both of them have dealt with moving into the next chapters in their own lives.
For me, it was 6 months after my Hubby passed away. I want to share with you how I dealt with his closet. This had been his closet for 24 years. I moved his clothes out. His coats, pants, and shoes were donated. His shoes were size 15. He had really big feet – as he should since he was really tall -6’9″ tall. I saved some shirts for quilts for my guys. If I don’t get that done I will hire a quilter friend to do that for them.
His “stuff” was mostly books and music. Some of these items I kept. and some were offered to our sons and family members.
I donated the potty chair and the walker. Bye, bye!!!
There are a couple of things you can do in reviving your space without breaking the bank.
New light fixtures, new floor and a fresh coat of paint can make all the difference in the world.
His closet was large with a dressing room vanity built-in at one end.
Step 2: You could start with the flooring.
I installed LVT – Luxury Vinyl Tile – Click Lock Vinyl Flooring in the bedroom and that included the dressing room and another closet. Here is a VIDEO for you. This was task actually done about done about 8 months before Hubby passed.
There are many colors and styles of the Click Lock Flooring for you to choose from and it is a reasonably easy DIY (if you can get up and down).
Step 3: A fresh coat of paint.
A new color of paint is an easy way to freshen up and revive your space. It is probably the most inexpensive part of an update. Choose a color you love and that makes you feel happy or peaceful.
Color can have a huge impact on your feelings. Painting may not seem like it would make much of a difference, but adding a new color to a room can breathe new life into any space.
What does it really mean to “revive your space”? It is to give it new life, to live again. We should not only do that in our physical space but in our spiritual and emotional space. Breathe. Remember to breathe. You are still here so there is a purpose for your presence here.
Baby Bird (that’s my youngest son) and His Lady did a great job of painting the dressing room area. They painted the walls a light gray. We decided to leave the built shelves and drawers white. Then after some discussion, we decided that they would paint the just the drawer fronts a dark gray. I stuck a paint sample near the drawers to see if I would really like it and I did.
Because some of the updates in my home had a sort of distressed, aged, chippy look, I decided to do a little dry brushing paint technique on the edges of the shelves and in other places that looked like they could use some distressing. I could have sanded but decided on paint instead.
Step 4: Add a new light fixture.
If your fixtures are out-dated this change can make a huge impact in your space. This is before
And this is after. It looks so much better.
Because there are so many styles and finishes in light fixtures, take your time in selecting a new fixture. Consider the style you are wanting to incorporate. And keep your budget in mind.
This farmhouse style Light Fixture was the most expensive part of the update. It was $100.00. Antique pewter was the finish that I selected. I could have wired it in myself because I have done that several times before. But Baby Bird’s Lady is a certified electrician and she offered to climb up and do that task. Who was I to say no?
Revive your space with light. Darkness flees in the presence of light. Oftentimes the grieving can feel dark and heavy. Turn on some lights. Get out, take a walk, or have lunch with friends. Just get out of the darkness.
Step 5: Little touches – Small changes can make a huge difference.
You can change out hardware or hang your pictures in a different location. Rearrange the furniture.
Back to my dressing room. Since there were only three drawers, that was an inexpensive update. I purchased the pulls at Hobby Lobby during a time that the knobs and pulls were half price. That was under $10.00.
You can remove your old hardware and replace with new or you can grab a can of spray paint to give your knobs or pull a new look. The pulls in my Laundry Room and my Kitchen have been painted several times.
Part of my “Little Touches” was to change the wall covering inside the shelves.
Don’t you just love that soft pink Victorian look? I loved it for almost 20 years and now it’s time for a change. Look around. Do you see some small changes that you can make to revive you space?
Do you remember the Roommates Distressed Wood Peel and Stick wall covering I used on MY CEDAR CHEST and in the KITCHEN BACKSPLASH? If not, then just click those links and check it out. I still had some left on that one roll so the cost there was $0.00! This product is so easy to use.
All of the changes were easy to do.
Step 6: Make a special place for a few treasures
Be careful that you don’t create a shrine. Some people have a hard time moving to their next chapter because they hold so tightly to the last chapter.
My hubby liked pocket watches. He couldn’t wear a wristwatch. So, we accumulated a few old pocket watches. They look so much better hanging on the little rack than just laying on the shelf. And I did lay his glasses right below the watches.
Last Step: Make the space your own space.
For me, I claimed his closet. The top shelf still holds a few of his books and some of his favorite CD’s but the closet part is now mine. I hung a few of my off-season clothes into this space.
I added a shoe rack. And this space will be used to store my large suitcase.
This space hasn’t been used for a dressing room for many years. But I will be using it now for hair and makeup. This area doesn’t have a door and since I will be using this dressing room every morning I don’t want to see all the hanging clothes reflected in the mirror. I have a collection of vintage lace tablecloths. Imagine that! So I rummaged through and found one that is the right width and length. A shower curtain rod and some cafe curtain clips were perfect for hanging the tablecloth.
This cute LITTLE POLKA DOT CHAIR was also revived with a makeover.
It went from trash to treasure.
Revive your space. Make it your own. That does not mean that you are erasing the memories or getting rid of any evidence that your loved one never existed. It simply means that you are turning the page to begin your new chapter. It’s okay to move on. How long you take to move on is up to you.
I love this. Deuteronomy 34: 7-9 – “Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were not weak nor his strength gone. 8 The Israelites grieved for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days, until the time of weeping and mourning was over. 9 Now Joshua son of Nun was filled with the spirit of wisdom because Moses had laid his hands on him. So the Israelites listened to him and did what the Lord had commanded Moses.”
My Hubby longed to live and die like Moses. He wanted to live to be 120 years old. But he only made it 69 years. The Israelites grieved for 30 days and then it was over. Joshua stepped into his new place (new chapter of his life) as their leader. He led them into to promised land.
PS.- Just a little note. That image of the stack of Hubby’s clothes at the top of this post has a checkbook box in the lower right-hand corner that has the word “Promise” on it. That photo was taken months ago and I didn’t even think about that until I got to the very end of this post. I hope that seeing the word “Promise” is as much of a blessing to you as it was to me when I put the two things together.
’til next time,