How to Cope at a Funeral
One of the most difficult things we will do in our lives is attend the funerals of the people we love. These memorial services can be incredibly emotional, and at times, feel impossible to get through.
We understand how difficult saying goodbye to the people you love can be. That’s why we’ve put together a list of helpful coping strategies you can use at a funeral, visitation, or other celebration of life.
Surround yourself with people who love you.
No matter how it may feel, remember that you are not alone in your grief. There are people in your life who will want to be there for you and support you during your loss. Be sure to invite them to the services and let them help with any arrangements, should they offer. Having them around will help make your dark days a little bit brighter.
Take a few moments to yourself before the service begins.
Even with supportive friends and family around you, it is still important that you take a little time to center yourself before the service begins. Three ways to do this include:
- Pray or Mediate: A quiet moment of prayer or a short mediation can help keep you present during the funeral events.
- Seek Guidance: Learning from people who have gone through a similar hard time can be invaluable. Find out what helped others get through it and apply their advice to your own experience.
- Get a Drink of Water or Bite of Food: The most important thing you can do is take care of yourself. Just a small sip of water or a snack will prepare you for the day ahead.
Keep your Loved One’s touch close.
Holding a tangible reminder of your Loved One during their funeral can help you to feel comforted by their presence. One memento that can help bring peace during the service, and for years after, is a piece of Jewelry or Keepsake engraved with their fingerprint. As you run your hand along the lines and grooves of their unique print, you will know that they are forever with you.
Give yourself something to focus on.
It’s common to feel overwhelmed by grief during a Loved One’s funeral. However, there are simple practices that you can implement that will help you stay in the moment and focused on laying them to rest. For example:
- Follow Along with the Program: Many funeral services will have a program with the order of events listed. You can follow along with it to help you stay mindful.
- Appreciate the Beauty of the Flowers Around You: As you are waiting for the service to begin, or during a musical interlude, take some time to appreciate the beauty of any flowers gifted from other family members and friends. Focusing on this positive perspective will help bring some clarity and peace during the funeral.
- Take a Few Deep Breaths: Inhaling and exhaling a few deep breaths can help calm you down during funeral services. Focus on the movement of the air until you sense yourself starting to feel better.
Find a private moment to say your own personal goodbye.
For those who are grieving, funerals can sometimes feel like their grief is being put on display. Take the pressure off of yourself by finding a quiet moment alone to have your personal goodbye to your Loved One. This can be before the service, at the graveside, or even a moment you have to sneak away from the reception.
Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time. Please reach out to a trusted friend or professional if you need someone to speak to about your grief.