The past year has made many of us realize that the loss of a loved one can come unexpectedly. Of course, death tends to be a relatively taboo subject that few people regularly speak about. It’s something sad and it’s something that can be scary, so it’s not all too surprising that many of us don’t want to focus on or talk about this subject. However, at the end of the day, death is unfortunately a sad reality and – when it comes down to it – an inevitability. What’s important, now more than ever when death rates are peaking due to the coronavirus and Covid-19 virus, is that we understand death and that we understand the process of grieving and saying goodbye to loved ones. Hopefully, you won’t have to experience this anytime soon. However, here’s some information to keep in the back of your mind should you or a loved one need it.
A huge part of loss is grief. Grieving is a completely natural process and the majority of us will experience it when someone close to us passes. The process can be long and it can be difficult process or it can be shorter and something that you deal with better than others. At the end of the day, it’s entirely individual and all of us will cope in different ways and pick up different coping mechanisms. Here’s some more on grief to help you understand.
What Is Grief?
Let’s start out by talking about what grief actually is. Put simply, grief is a process that people commonly experience when they have lost someone or something important to them. It is an entirely natural response to loss and the majority of people will sadly experience it at some point or another in their life. There are a number of different types of loss that people can find themselves grieving over. This can range from divorce to the loss of health, retirement, children leaving home and more. However, generally, the loss of life tends to cause the most difficult grief. This could be the loss of a pet, a miscarriage or the loss of a person close to you. For most people, grief will come hand in hand with feelings and experiences of emotional suffering. Of course, sadness tends to reign supreme in this process. However, during the grieving process, you may find that you encounter a whole host of other emotions too. Other common elements of grief include shock, anger, disbelief, guilt, profound sadness and much more. It’s also important to be aware that grief can contain elements of physical symptoms too. Common examples include difficulty sleeping, difficulty focusing, a loss or lack of appetite and feeling as though you have no energy.
Another important thing to remember is that the grieving process is different for everyone. It’s a hugely personal experience and different people can react to loss in entirely different ways. What you should always keep in mind, when grieving yourself or when witnessing someone else’s grief, is that there is no right or wrong way to grieve. Sure, some ways of grieving may be healthier than others, but it is an entirely individual experience and reactions will be largely unique to a person and their personality
Differences in Grieving
Sometimes there are key elements that can impact the way that you grieve. For example, some religions will have unique grieving processes. Other factors that can impact grieving include your personality type, your life experience (if you’ve experienced a lot of loss or if this is the first time you’ve experienced loss), your coping style and how significant the person was to you and your life.
For the vast majority of people, one thing rings true, and that’s that grief is generally a long and slow process. You need to be prepared for it to take time for you to heal. Some people will grieve for days, others weeks, others years. Most will still feel some sort of loss or as though something is missing for the rest of their lives. Make sure to be kind to yourself and to allow your grief to occur naturally. Don’t fight your emotions.
During this emotional phase in your life, you may feel that you need support. The good news is that there is plenty of support out there. From family and friends to professionals and other helping hands. Be aware that you can talk to your doctor about how you’re feeling and you can also talk to a therapist. On top of this, there are helplines and even support groups that you can go to.
Planning the Funeral
A huge part of losing someone will involve planning some sort of funeral. This is a process that most of us are entirely unfamiliar with, so hopefully, some of the information below will help you to know what to prepare for.
Choosing a Service
There are all sorts of different services that people can choose from when it comes to arranging a funeral. From traditional cremation and burial services to religious services, eco friendly funerals an more. Some key elements that people tend to include in a funeral tend to include a lined coffin, transport of the person to the funeral director’s premise, the care of the person until the funeral, a hearse to take the person to the nearest crematorium or burial ground, transport for loved ones to follow the hearse, providing the necessary people to carry the coffin. You may also want to consider additional services, which can also include flowers and cemetery headstones from Memorials.com. Remember that all of these things aren’t entirely essential. Lately, the popularity of direct cremations or “unattended funerals” has increased. This makes things much more affordable and doesn’t require a service, which some people prefer.
Unfortunately, there is, of course, a financial element to planning a funeral. Some people choose to put aside money or take out funeral plans to cover the cost of a funeral should they pass. Some people will have life insurance which can help to cover the costs. However, if the person you have lost hasn’t prepared anything, you may find yourself having to fork out the costs yourself. Make sure that you always request information regarding the prices of additional factors in any funeral to ensure that you can stay within a budget that you should set for yourself.
These are just a few elements of loss that you may find yourself having to deal with at some point or another. Hopefully, some of the above information has helped to prepare you should you need it.