Family to Family: The Charles F. Snyder Funeral Blog
Returning to “normal” after a funeral
Posted on July 20, 2014 by Christina Jemison
While browsing the Internet recently, I came across an interesting article about attending funerals. It opened my eyes to a whole new perspective on grief.
We all know that attending a funeral can be difficult. Whether it was a friend, neighbor, or co-worker, many of us try to muster up the courage to pay our respects to the family. We drop off a meal soon after the services, share a few thoughts and prayers in their memory, and sometimes donate money in their honor. Rarely, unless it involves us personally, do we think past the immediate time following the funeral. We remember the person that passed during the funeral and memorial service, but less often do we focus on what happens after the fact. It’s hard to picture the family settling into their new “normal.”
Growing up surrounded by the funeral business, many times I heard from my family or the Snyder Funeral home staff tell families “and now comes the hard part.” Once the initial shock of the death and the services dies down, a new normal sets in for them. While some days may pass with less sadness, others will be writhed with memories of dates, birthdays, anniversaries, and special times.
This is when grief sets in and becomes overbearing. This is when friends and family are needed most.
In my opinion, one of the most important aspects of helping a loved one grieve is simply giving them proper time and space to grieve. Everyone grieves differently, and people’s methods of grief can certainly change over time. Grief can be a learned emotion, and for many it will be a completely new emotion as well. So be kind. Give them support, but also give them space. Just being there is more than they even know how to ask.
So I ask of you all, next time you need to attend a funeral, pay your respects, return home to your normal, but keep your friend and family at the forefront of your mind. Not for the time being, but for a while, and help them adjust to their new normal.