During the time of social distancing required to slow the spread of COVID-19, we seek to continue to support our community. Although we cannot meet face-to-face, we know the need is great for those experiencing the loss of a loved one or the far-reaching grief associated with the outbreak. One expert, trusted by VNACHCH, is hosting an online grief support group, “Grief, Releasing Pain, Remembering Love & Finding Meaning,” that can be joined here.
The grief process is unique to each person going through it, but COVID-19 has added a new, universal layer of challenges.
Whether you have lost someone to COVID-19 or have been forced by the pandemic to endure the loss of a loved one under unanticipated and unprecedented circumstances, there are resources available to help you navigate this time.
“During a time of loss it is helpful to turn to those with whom we can share the experience and find comfort. As a result of social distancing, we’re unable to engage in many of our traditional methods of coping with loss, making it all the more difficult,” said Deborah Pausig, Hospice Bereavement Coordinator at VNACHCH. “There are, however, ways we can find support and peace during this crisis. Know you are not alone.”
There is no right or wrong way to grieve, but with the loss of normalcy in our day-to-day lives our bereaved are living a grief journey that is complex and specific to this period of time. We hope that the information in the links below can provide some insight into what you are experiencing and provide you with ideas that may be beneficial in your grieving process.
This document , “Grief and Loss in the Time of COVID-19”, was created by www.whatsyourgrief.com.
You will find it covers the topics of:
- 8 Reasons your grief feels worse right now
- In a world filled with loss, who gets to grieve?
- Please stop minimizing the death of older adults
- Eight reasons why the death of an elderly loved one is difficult
- When you can’t be with a dying family member
- 10 ideas for funerals and memorials when you can’t be together
- Some general coping and self-care reminders
The grieving process is unique to each person. It can have emotional and physical impacts and is a journey every person who loses a loved one must face. We are here to make sure you need not face it alone.
As part of an extension of our hospice program, we support the family of our patients for 13 months after their loved one has passed away. We follow up with family members regularly during that time frame through phone calls and mailings offering support and resources. We invite those who are bereaved to take part in our 8-week bereavement support group at Evergreen Woods, called “Comfort in Motion.” Participants take part in this unique and welcoming opportunity to walk and talk in a casual and supportive setting followed by socialization in the “Club Room.”
The group, which is held three times a year, is facilitated by a trained VNA Community Healthcare & Hospice bereavement volunteer. Although our program is designed to support the loved ones of our hospice patients, the group is open to anyone in the public seeking comfort and support.
In addition to our own Comfort in Motion – the only group of its kind in the state – we offer listings for family members of all support groups in the area.
A highlight of our bereavement program is our annual Remembrance Service, a special event that brings together the families of our hospice patients who passed away in the year prior to honor their memory, celebrate their lives and cherish the lasting impact they had on those who loved them and those who were fortunate to care for them in their final days.
What is Grief? The internal experience caused by the death of someone loved. Normal symptoms are Feelings (Emotions), Physical Sensations, Cognitions (Thoughts) and Behaviors.
What is Mourning? The outward expression of grief and bereavement.(Memorials, gatherings, rituals, etc.)
What is Bereavement? The physical, emotional, cognitive, social, and spiritual state caused by the death of someone loved.
Thank you to our Bereavement Program Sponsor: