Life footprint is also known as a vital trace and refers to the connection that the mourners have established with the deceased throughout their lives. The relationship with the loved one that is no longer physically present constitutes a set of shared moments, conversations, perhaps disagreements, joy and sadness. When that person dies it is possible to honor their achievements, advice, teachings and, even more, those aspects with which we do not totally agree through the acceptance of what happened.

Acceptance is one of the fundamental stages of grief. By recognizing that a loved one is not going to come back, the healing process advances considerably. But acceptance implies analyzing the relationship with the deceased, the patterns we have unconsciously copied from that person and which ones can be positive or negative.

Throughout life, we copy the form of gesturing, walking, laughing, from the father, mother, brother or other relatives. To trace the life footprint when one of them has died means to analyze how those patterns favor, change or damage us.

This is not about making the memory of that loved one more painful, sad or negative, or tarnishing it. The thing is to draw a new relationship or link with the person who has died from memories. Certainly, he won’t come back, and the mourners have the emotional challenge of relocating him.

It can take time, because the pain of the loss does not dissipate in a few days. We know that mourning can take an average of six months. So there is no hurry. Family members have time to appreciate how the deceased has influenced their lives and honor him from those memories. It is important for family members to keep in mind that no one will occupy the place that the loved one had in their lives. Although this person is no longer physically among them she does not disappear, because she is remembered through each lived moment, each word or teaching and that link is never broken.