Organizing a funeral is hard work, especially if the death is unexpected and comes without warning. Most people find it difficult to manage their shock and grief on top of dealing with the administrative aspect of putting together a funeral, like contacting the cemetery and funeral home, notifying family and friends, and deciding key issues like casket types and religious rituals based on the religious beliefs of the deceased, if any.
However, even if organizing a funeral may be one of the hardest things you will ever do, it is still vital to hold funerals for the mourning process. They bring many benefits to the friends and family members of the deceased. Read on to find out how holding a funeral is essential for the mourning process.
Processing Shock and Acknowledging Grief
Funerals present an opportunity for the friends and family members of the deceased to gather and process the shock and grief they feel for the recently departed. According to nationally-respected grief expert and counselor Dr. Alan Wolfelt, a funeral is not just about closure. It is a chance to acknowledge the grief that you feel for the departed and to know that you are not alone in feeling this heavy emotional burden. The funeral is the first step in knowing that you are grieving and becoming reconciled to grief over time.
As Dr. Wolfelt says, “Your feelings of loss will not completely disappear, yet they will soften, and the intense pangs of grief will become less frequent. Hope for a continued life will emerge as you are able to make commitments to the future, realizing that the person who died will never be forgotten, yet knowing that your life can and will move forward.” This process can take weeks and months, but going through a funeral is the vital first step in emotional healing.
Remembrance of the Departed
Many elements of the funeral allow people to come together and remember. The visitation, the eulogy, and the gathering are all opportunities to share personal and cherished memories of the departed. This process helps those who are living to transform their physical relationship with the departed into one of memory. In addition, the sharing of memories allow the departed to come together as a person through different facets and identities, be it as a colleague, a parent, a spouse or a sibling. As people come together to share and remember, they also commiserate with one another in their grief.
Helping the Living to Create New Identities
We feel a sense of loss from the departure of loved ones because a part of our identity comes from our relationship with them. As such, a part of us leaves along with their deaths. A funeral begins the process of forming new identities through a mental shift, helping us learn to continue living even after the death of our loved ones.
We Understand and We Can Help
At American Heritage Cemetery & Funeral Home, we use our expertise in ensuring that the process of putting your loved ones to rest runs smoothly so that you can concentrate on remembering and honoring the memory of the departed. Please feel free to contact us to learn more about our professional services.