Jewish Funeral Traditions
The Process of a Jewish Funeral
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My brother Keith loved life and always tried to live it to the fullest. Whether it was playing high school basketball, going on a hunting trip with my uncles, or trying to get a date with a girl at school, he enjoyed taking on a challenge. Our country was the one thing Keith loved more than anything. He was a proud American and one of the biggest patriots I know.
After 9/11, he was upset. He was mad. And he wanted to do something about it. Keith enlisted in the military and eventually made it to Afghanistan. He would write us all the time and let us know what it was like over there. Then one day we got the worst knock on our door ever. A U.S. military sergeant was standing at our front step and informed my parents that Keith had been killed.
His loss was hard on my family, and it overwhelmed us all with grief. Dealing with grief and recovering from it is different for everyone. Some people were seemed like they moved on right after Keith’s service ended.
For me though, it took a little longer. But, I made it through and you will too. If you’re reading this, you have probably lost someone close to you, and you’re looking for advice about dealing with death and recovering from grief. It’s not easy, but everyday gets a little better. The following are 5 tips that helped me through my experience, and I hope it will help you through yours.
1. Get Active
No one feels bad after they exercise. While it may not be easy at first, getting out of the house and doing something active will help focus your attention elsewhere and should at least make you feel better physically. If only for a little bit, it can be an escape from the pain you’re feeling.
2. Write Them Letters
When you are experiencing grief, writing down your feelings is one of the best ways to express them. By writing letters to your loved one, you can express what you are feeling and begin to work through those feelings and emotions. Writing your loved one a letter can also be comforting as you can update them about what is going on in your life and feel a connection to them.
3. Celebrate The Milestones
When the big holidays and anniversaries come up, celebrate them. These are times to gather with friends and family and be together. While your loved one may not be there, treat it as an opportunity to share stories about them and celebrate the things they loved most about those celebrations.
4. Take A Vacation
A vacation allows you the chance to get away and get a new perspective on life. If there was somewhere you and your loved one always dreamed of going, take the trip there. Doing so will help you achieve something they always wanted to. You don’t have to go with anyone either, travelling by yourself may allow you time to explore and learn new things about yourself.
5. Live Life Like They Did
One of the best ways to feel closer to your loved one is by doing the things they loved to do. Consider creating a bucket list of things you would like to accomplish. Maybe they had a signature dish everyone loved, commit to learning how to make it just like them. Was there a certain skill or activity they loved to do? Take it up and learn to do it as good as they did.