As the dust settles on another day and we move forward facing another unknown and filled with advice from every corner, even ones we didn't expect or realise were so knowledgeable or medically qualified, but who still insist on giving their professional opinion on this unforeseen times and what we are to do, how we should act and what we are to expect. In fairness there is so much information finding its way around and sometimes it can very easily be miss heard or taken in a wrong context and it's so easy to decide what someone else does is wrong, instead of taking stock of our own actions and trying to do what is best to maintain a slightly normal approach and reign some calm and help instead of adding to the confusion.
While most business were forced to shut down, we had to try keep our show on the road, under new conditions and recommendations which were changing daily. The effect of this pandemic will be felt I believe for a long time, the business which were shut down will take serious time to recover and make up for loss of income and people’s behaviour has changed and when our habits are changed, sometimes it is very hard to get us to revisit and return to previous ways of life, we once took for granted, we are people of habit and if we get out of certain habits our return may be slow or not at all, we have adjusted to life at home, socialising more closely and in reduced numbers, cooking ourselves and attending religious services on our lab tops and phones, something we were reluctant to do, but adjusted very quickly when we had to.
Our funeral services were seriously effected by not offering our families the usual support of people calling to the funeral home and offering sympathies and telling the stories of the deceased which the family had not heard, thus filling their hearts with pride, joy and laughter, the large numbers who showed their support by turning up and simply saying “I’m sorry” and shaking hands till it hurt and then turning to the deceased and saying goodbye sometimes with a funny comment or a little prayer or tear all of which was a major contributor to the grieving process, and helped the bereaved and was the subject of many a conversation afterwards, shining a light and helping in a time of great sadness a glimpse of hope and a reason to carry on, these conversations along with how well the deceased looked, helped enormously and were a tradition we held dear and were very reluctant to let go.
But we were given no choice, so adjust we had to do, internet broadcasting of funerals became a must, people now standing along the roadside as the cortege moved from funeral home to church, cemetery or crematorium very quickly became the new normal way of expressing your sympathies, a new world without contact or interaction, but which still moved families and helped so much in their time of need of which they expressed such gratitude and appreciation. We were lucky as some businesses were not given any guidelines or ways of continuing, even in a different way, at least we could provide our services even if in just a slightly different and more cautious manner, we could still serve our customers needs.
I felt proud as I heard of the different ways funeral homes continued to offer their great services and expanded very quickly to provide online services, such as live streaming , web services to communicate funeral times and movements and online condolence books, all of which helped to provide contact between family and fiends helping to provide the support we are used to in this country in a time of bereavement, different methods , not the same, but the new norm we have now to embrace. Businesses used to catering for families after funerals were hit in a major way, but they too rose to the occasion and provided food and refreshment in small gatherings often in a garden or marquee, thus giving a little taste of that support needed to help bereaved cope with the new reality facing them and a chance to express thanks for the kindness so often showed by neighbours and friends at a sad time.
The cemetery became a focal point, so along with lining the route, people felt safe in this outdoor environment and often gathered and remained at a distance, but this was still an amazing site and comfort to bereaved families. Our clergy had concerns regarding their own health and gatherings in churches, which people were very kind and considerate at all times and respected.
Changed times we live in and we are not out of the woods yet I’m afraid, we still await further news and developments every day and hope that an end is in sight and we can begin to return to what we considered normal.
A respect for tradition, with a regard for change
These words probably mean more now than ever as we try embrace change , while respecting tradition.
Grey's funeral home
"My opinion one of the best undertaker's I have ever dealt with is our Eamonn Grey one click of a finger and you are safe and worry free and true to his professionalism does the job 101% all areas covered
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