So sad to hear about Aretha Franklin passing away. Diane loves to sing along with this when it comes on the radio. It’s my favourite too!
An end-of-life conversation with your loved ones in important to ensure you gather all their wishes and desires to hold a memorial that honors them and celebrates their life. Having this conversation before they die may seem uncomfortable or upsetting to talk. Here are some reasons why it is beneficial to the both of you:
Why have the talk?
By finding out the details and specifics of the events they wish to have taken place on the day of their death and their funeral memorial, it can take away the stress of having to make decisions during a difficult time. At a time in your life when death occurs in the family or to a close friend, you are experiencing a whirlwind of emotions and you are beginning to grieve. If you are left with no direction or instructions as to what your loved one wants, having to guess may not fulfill that day the way it could have if there was some guidance left for you.
Peace of mind
If you are thinking you should have the talk but you don’t want to upset your loved ones by bringing the topic of death up, you can break it down into ways that are easier to discuss. Explain that this day is going to come at some point in the future and by having this talk you can have a peace of mind knowing that your family and friends are aware of everything you wish for. You want to spare them the difficult task of planning and organizing a funeral while they are in pain, helping to avoid prolonging their grieving process.
Details to discuss
There isn’t any one particular way in which grief manifests itself and many people experience it in different ways. The simple fact is that grief and sorrow are something that are very difficult to understand until you are compelled to live with it. But many people do become stressed when dealing with the death of a loved one, not many are aware that grief can also manifest itself in the form of physical symptoms. It takes them quite some time to realize, that the physical problems they’re facing are correlated to the loss they’ve experienced.
Different Physical Symptoms Of Grief
Since every person is different, the grief they experience and the manner in which it surfaces as physical symptoms is different as well. However some of the common symptoms include:
- Aches and pains
- Shortness of breath
- Tightness in the chest
- Inability to focus
- Digestive issues
- Appetite changes
- Getting sick more often
God looked around his garden
And He found an empty place.
He then looked down upon this earth,
And saw your tired face.
He put his arms around you
And lifted you to rest.
God’s garden must be beautiful
He always takes the best.
He knew that you were suffering
He knew you were in pain
He knew that you would never
Get well on earth again.
He saw that the road was getting rough.
And the hills are hard to climb,
So He closed your weary eyelids
And whispered “Peace be thine”.
It broke our hearts to lose you
But you didn’t go alone
For part of us went with you
That day that God called you home
Anniversaries are important milestones in a person’s life. For example, a marriage anniversary is a special day to celebrate a lifelong commitment. Such events ensure you don’t take life for granted and cherish every year.
These celebrations can turn into sorrow after the death of a loved one. They become stark reminders of what you have lost. At Elite Funeral Directors, we have found that there are three simple things you can do to make anniversaries a little easier.
1. Take a break
Anniversaries can be painful if you’re in familiar surroundings so taking a break is a great way to get away from it for a while. Travel to a different destination with friends or take a road trip. The new experiences and curiosity will overshadow the grief and help you get through the day.
2. Celebrate it differently
Another beautiful sunny day in Sydney. I just love days like this when I get to lay outside and bask in the sunshine.
Diane, my pet parent, snapped a couple of photos of me while I was outside. I was in the garden resting on the stone that the monumental masons at Rookwood Cemetery made for us. We partnered with them on their Hidden Exhibition in 2017 and will be doing it again in 2018.
Here’s a link to some pictures from 2017.
Having been left with your loved one’s personal effects after they pass, this can now often include their social media or email accounts and in an age of technology it can be difficult to know where to start, particularly with the younger generations.
However, it is important not to ignore them as they reach a wide network of your loved one’s friends and connections so it not only makes it easier for you to spread the news but also to ensure that the emails and social media aren’t being contacted.
Check the Terms of Service
The first thing you should do is check the terms of service of each platform to find out about your options. Facebook and Instagram, for example, will allow you to memorialize an account with proof of death which could be a way of honouring your loved one. Most platforms will need to see proof of death in order to deactivate or close the account on behalf of someone else so be prepared to make copies to email over.
Make sure you aren’t breaking federal law in your country by logging into your loved one’s account and posting on their behalf but normally this is considered okay as you let others know about service arrangements and details.
As we enter the holiday season, many who have lost a loved one will experience grief. If the loss was recent, the grief may be overwhelming. But even if the loss was years ago, the holiday season often resurfaces an element of grief as we remember holidays past.
Around 30 years ago, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross described something called the “5 Stages of Grief” in her book “On Death and Dying.” Since then, people have started to use this guideline to understand how individuals go through the grieving process.
Denial is the first instinctive response to any kind of bad news. People immediately want to reject it and for the brief moment, they believe that rejecting the idea of loss will undo that loss. This is a part of the healthy coping mechanism but it shouldn’t last too long.
After denial comes anger. People believe their loss is unfair and the entire world should be mourning with them. They become frustrated with friends, family, and even strangers. This is also a healthy and instinctive response. Anger can last for a long time, especially if the circumstances of the loss are abrupt and traumatic.
We used this poem at a service recently and I thought I would share it on my blog. I hope you love it as much as I do.
Those we love
are never really lost to us–
we feel them
in so many special ways-
they always cared about
and dreams they left behind,
in beauty that they added to our days . . .
in words of wisdom we still carry with us
and memories that never will be gone . . .
Those we love are never really lost to us–
For everywhere their special love lives on.
By: Amanda Bradley
Sorry to cause such as scare. Geez I’ve never been hugged so tight as when Scott picked me up when I returned. After all, it had only been a few days!
I was scrolling through the comments on Diane’s Facebook post and saw that someone suggested I write a blog post about my adventures. I thought that was a splendid idea so I checked with Diane & Scott to get their permission (they’re a wee bit protective today) and composed this update.
So where was I during my adventure?
Remember the line from the Lord of the Rings….”Not all who wander are lost”? Well, that was me. I wasn’t lost, I was just wandering.
It all started when I went outside for some fresh air. I know I’m not supposed to go outside without Diane or Scott but I was bored. Plus, I didn’t think it would be a problem. (Don’t tell Scott but I do that a lot when they are off at a funeral.)