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Funerea Blog

The Healing Power of Story During Covid 19

The Healing Power of Story During Covid 19

Planning a funeral after the death of a loved one is not merely a response to religious doctrine. Having something to do after a huge loss can help you put one foot in front of the other. Making decisions about readings, speakers, flowers, and food can help cushion...

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Saying Goodbye in the Time of Covid 19.

Saying Goodbye in the Time of Covid 19.

When Mourning in Community is Taken Away

Life is bizarre these days to say the least. Covid-19 has systematically stripped us of our common freedoms: to go about our lives as we wish, to hug our friends and family, to touch without fear of contagion, to go to work, to feel useful in the world.

A less considered freedom that has gone by the wayside for many is that of being able to mourn the loss of our loved ones in a community of family and friends. Typically, people come together from all aspects of a person’s life to remember, to support one another, to help bear the burden of loss. While memorial services, funerals, and celebrations of life continue in some areas of the US where the virus is less rampant, in other states they have had to be cancelled, delayed, or go on in a much-reduced manner until we are on the other side of this pandemic.

How does it feel when you can’t bring people together to say goodbye, when you have to make that most difficult of transitions virtually alone, or, if you do hold it, very few people can attend? If one follows the government’s request, there may not be more than 10 people in attendance. “We were not allowed to hug or kiss. I mean how could you go to your dad’s funeral or wake or remembrance and you can’t hug or kiss a family member you haven’t seen or a life-long friend. It was really devastating for us, very devastating,” Maria Crupi said, having lost her dad during this pandemic (Spectrum News NY 1, D. Meminger, March 23, 2020).

As Ben Franklin noted, however, “out of adversity comes opportunity”. The way we are saying goodbye to our loved ones is already changing. No longer willing to follow the rules regarding the presiding funeral home/house-of-worship culture dictating how we say goodbye to those we’ve lost, people (often Boomers) are changing those rules. One significant change, and one that people were beginning to turn to even before the virus, is to delay the service. Many people are doing this to give themselves time to create a celebration that more clearly represents what a unique being their loved one was. Not rushing to put something together in the midst of one’s immediate grief can open up room for creativity, for including friends and family in a more measured way, for allowing attendees to make travel arrangements without the pressure of last-minute planning.

Here in Vermont many are also turning to Celebrants to lead such a service. A funeral Celebrant spends hours with a family, asking questions and engaging in conversation about who their loved one was in the various facets of their lives. Together with family and friends a Celebrant designs a service tailored in its music, rituals, readings and more, to the unique individuality of the person who has died. These conversations and the planning process in and of itself can provide the beginning of healing for those suffering loss.

These conversations can be held via Skype, Google Meetings, or Zoom. You don’t have to be alone during your terrible time inside this terrible time. If you have lost someone to the virus or during this pandemic, reach out to a Celebrant and start the process of healing.

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A Simple Twist of Fate

A Simple Twist of Fate

About 2 months ago when I wrote of my friend, her final days with cancer, and her thoughts about that inevitability, having a diagnosis of cancer myself was the farthest thought from my mind. But 7 days after I left her home, I was in the doctors office receiving my...

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Celebrations of Life
Memorial Services
Remembrance Events

Contact Mary

email

mary@funerea.org

Phone

802-871-2097

Find Us

168 Battery Street
Burlington, VT 05401

(Park on Battery St. and walk up alley way to left of Eyes of the World, entrance is on right, or park on Maple St. and walk up drive for Holloway Block. Headquarters Building is on left.)

Celebrations of Life
Memorial Services
Remembrance Rituals

Contact Mary

email

mary@funerea.org

Phone

802-871-2107

Find Us

168 Battery Street
Burlington, VT 05401

(Park on Battery St. and walk up alley way to left of Eyes of the World, entrance is on right, or park on Maple St. and walk up drive for Holloway Block. Headquarters Building is on left.)