I am writing this as we journey through this season of Advent and are looking towards Christmas and the start of a New Year.
2020 was not the year that anyone was expecting and as the year closes, we are looking into another period of lockdown. As individuals, families and as a community we have been through such a difficult and emotional time. A word which seems to sum up 2020 is “loss”.
Whether the loss was an opportunity, a job, meeting our family and friends, a hug, our freedom to travel or for so many the loss of a loved one. Loss has touched the lives and hearts of every person living through this pandemic. This year has allowed us to value what we thought was normal and the loss of this normality has affected us all deeply.
As a Funeral Director, I have watched and struggled as many of the things that I have done daily for over thirty years has changed. No shaking hands, no giving a family member a hug, no large funerals, no funeral teas and at one stage only 10 at a funeral. It was heart-breaking for families and we have really struggled with all the emotional and difficult conversations that have been had and which are still taking place. Although I now strongly believe that, what we have been doing is perhaps different to what has been traditionally , it is not wrong!
As a Funeral Director working in this community, I have a duty to all the families that I have the privilege of serving, to those I work alongside and my staff to follow all the guidance given to us and to look after this community which I love and value so much.
This season of Advent, whilst it may not be the same as other years, in not being able to meet and come together, it is my hope that we can think about the things that matter and not the loss we have had.
Our love for our families, our gratitude for what we have, our hope for the future, our faith and the unity of spirit is what makes us stronger as individuals and as a community.
Please stay safe, follow the guidance and we look forward to a better 2021.