If your death occurred today, would your loved one know how to arrange your funeral wishes and how you would like to be celebrated?
When death occurs there are numerous things that all need to be done quickly, such as:....
Someone you love has died and you are now faced with the difficult, but important, need to mourn. According to Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D, Director of the Center for Loss and Life Transition “Mourning is the open expression of your thoughts and feelings regarding the death and the person who has died. It is an essential part of healing.”
Scientists have proven petting animals can reduce stress, lower blood pressure and even create a hormonal response that raises serotonin levels and helps fight depression. For many years, therapy dogs have been on the scene where natural disasters or traumatic events have occurred. According to the American Kennel Club, a therapy dog goes with its owners to volunteer in settings such as schools, hospitals and nursing homes. From working with a child who is learning to read to visiting a senior in....
At one point in time or another, you will likely be involved with planning a funeral or Life Celebration. While this is a daunting task that no one looks forward to doing, if done in advance your efforts will be very beneficial to your family and friends when it is time to say goodbye to your loved one. If you are the family member or friend who is responsible for planning a funeral at the time of need, don’t worry, your funeral director will walk you through every decision and help you every step of the way.
Anyone who has experienced a death of a loved one may find the holidays difficult. The season can become filled with feelings of sadness, loss and emptiness. “Society encourages you to join in the holiday spirit, but all around you the sounds, sights and smells trigger memories of the one you love who has died,” said Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D, Director of the Center for Loss and Life Transition “During the holidays it is important to remember to be tolerant and compassionate with yourself.”
It’s a new year! For many people that means life starts over. It’s a time to try to live better, be more organized, and complete tasks that perhaps were overlooked during the previous year. As you are making your resolutions and lists of all the things you want to do to make your life better in 2018, have you considered discussing having the Talk of a Lifetime with your loved ones? What is the Talk of a Lifetime you might be asking. Having the Talk of a Lifetime means sharing your story....
If you have attended a funeral service recently, you may have noticed that it was a little more upbeat and celebratory than the services you attended when you were a young adult or child. With the baby boom population being 75 million strong, it’s no surprise that today’s funeral services have become “Life Celebrations” instead of a room full of friends and family wearing black attire and sad faces.
Although it took a little longer for the cold, icy and grey weather to roll into Central Kentucky this year, Winter seems like an eternity for those of us who like the more moderate Spring temperatures living just south of the Mason Dixon line gifts to us. For many people though, the bone chilling weather bring with it sickness, depression and grief. These illnesses can be caused by something as simple as being vulnerable to sickness to suffering from seasonal affective disorder to coping.....
Regardless of your age, there is a good chance that you have attended at least one or two funerals. For those people reading this article, there is a greater chance that you’ve possibly attended many more funerals than just two. Unfortunately, over the past year, I personally have attended more funerals than normal. With each funeral I attend, my belief that funerals are an important ritual to help the living acknowledge loss and begin the grief process grows even stronger. Funerals do matter.
Whether you’re a boomer or the child of a boomer, you may have started talking about the next 10, 20 or even 30 years and planning for the retirement years. If you have already had the retirement conversation and started planning, congratulations – you are doing yourself and your family a favor by considering and possibly making decisions about the many choices you have available to you. If you haven’t, don’t worry, you aren’t alone.
I understand discussing or pre-
Have you ever considered how much your family has experienced during your lifetime together? From the birth of your children to the first and last days of school to weddings and all the vacations, ballgames and performances in between, you probably have many stories to share with friends and families. Along the way, I’m pretty certain you have probably taken hundreds if not thousands of photos and videos of your family and friends to help document your journey.
As a funeral director, I am sometimes asked what is the best way to talk with grieving children about death. While every situation is unique, here are some suggestions from Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D., for communicating with your child in most circumstances.
Someone you love has died and you are now faced with the difficult, but important, need to mourn. According to Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D., director of the Center for Loss and Life Transition, “Mourning is the open expression of your thoughts and feelings regarding the death and the person who has died. It is an essential part of healing.”
Losing a loved one — either through unexpected or anticipated circumstances — is always traumatic. Whether the person who died was a spouse, child, parent, sibling or friend, the pain you may feel from this loss is real. As a funeral director, I’ve noticed many of the individuals I help with funeral planning are very composed as they focus on memorializing their loved one. I’ve found the most difficult time for survivors is when the funeral service is over, out-
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Someone you love has died and you are now faced with the difficult, but important, need to mourn.
According to Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D., director of the Center for Loss and Life Transition, “Mourning is the open expression of your thoughts and feelings regarding the death and the person who has died. It is an essential part of healing.”
The grief journey is often frightening, painful, overwhelming and sometimes lonely. With hope, the following tips from Wolfelt will help you as you move toward healing in your personal grief experience.
Realize your grief is unique. No one will grieve in exactly the same way. Don’t try to compare your experience with that of other people. Your experience will be influenced by the relationship you had with the person who died; the circumstances surrounding the death; your emotional support system; and your cultural and religious background.
Talk about your grief. Express your grief openly. When you share your grief, healing occurs and often makes you feel better. Speak from your heart with caring friends and relatives who will listen without judging.
Expect to feel a multitude of emotions. Experiencing loss affects your head, heart and spirit. So you may encounter a variety of emotions as part of your grief work. Confusion, disorganization, fear, guilt,
relief or explosive emotions are just a few of the emotions you may feel.
Allow for numbness. Feeling dazed or numb when someone dies is often part of your early grief experience. This numbness serves a valuable purpose: It gives your emotions time to catch up with what your mind has told you. This feeling helps create insulation from the reality of the death until you are more able to tolerate what you don’t want to believe.
Be tolerant of your physical and emotional limits. Your feelings of loss and sadness will probably leave you fatigued, unable to think clearly and make decisions. Respect what your body and mind are telling you. Nurture yourself. Get daily rest. Eat balanced meals. Lighten your schedule.
Make use of ritual. The funeral ritual does more than acknowledge the death of someone loved. It helps provide the support of caring people. Most importantly, the funeral is a way for you to express your grief outside yourself.
Embrace your spirituality. If faith is part of your life, express it in ways that seem
appropriate to you. Allow yourself to be around people who understand and support your religious beliefs.
Allow a search for meaning. You may find yourself asking, “Why did he die? Why did this happen to me? Why now?” This search for meaning is often another normal part of the healing process. Healing occurs when questions are posed, not necessarily when they are answered.
Treasure your memories. Memories are one of the best legacies that exist after someone loved dies. Treasure them. Share them. Recognize memories may make you laugh or cry.
Embrace grief with help from others. The capacity to love requires the necessity to grieve when someone loved dies. You cannot heal unless you openly express and embrace your grief. One way to do this is by attending a support group, a program designed to help people cope with their loss.
Milward Funeral Directors hosts a Support Group on the third Tuesday of every month between March and October 2019 at 6:15 p.m. at its 1509 Trent Boulevard, Lexington, location. The Support Group is open to the public without cost or obligation.
Joey Tucker has been serving the Lexington community as a funeral director for Milward Funeral Directors since 2007 and has been a licensed funeral director since 2002. Milward is the 37th-