It’s very hard, extremely hard to lose a loved person or family member. The emotional distress is absorbed and felt by every cell of the body. The pain is excruciating and real.
The grief hurts so much for 2 reasons. The first obvious reason is the departure of a loved one. There is clothing, computers, phone, shoes, tennis rackets, music around the house as if they just went to the shop and is coming back soon. However it’s no longer possible to call them, talk to them, touch them, smile at them, dine with them. They are gone and the painful truth which is most difficult to accept, they are gone forever.
The second reason is that the grieving person has lost his role and identity in that relationship. One could never be the son, the daughter, the husband or the wife, the grandfather or the grandmother for a simple reason that another person broke that link and left. The survivor is unwillingly stripped of his identity, is abandoned without any notification and consent. This fact amplifies the pain many times and makes it unbearable.
In many cultures the grieving process is considered to be sacred and very special, the grieving person is treated with special care, enveloped in understanding, empathy and love. In some cultures the grieving person is wearing black clothing for 40 days and others respect that and treat such person gently and carefully. Usually the survivor is surrounded with circle of family and friends not only during the funeral but also during 40 days after the death of beloved one.
From the view of psychological and emotional state there is nothing normal about grieving process apart from our knowledge that some day each of us will face it. During the pandemic and lockdown many people already lost at least few of their identities as an employee, as club member, as traveller. Most us are grieving this loss. Each of us are facing uncertainty at any given moment, we are stripped of our ability to plan the future, to implement it and be causative in our lives. The lockdown itself is so abnormal to each individual and the whole society. An additional complication to the grieving process has been inability to have a traditional funeral, which is the first closure ceremony, supported by family and friends.
Sadly, loosing a loved one during the lockdown has nothing normal, not old normal and nothing new normal. There is no such thing as a new normal grieving process.