BANGOR — Grieving is difficult at any point but the COVID-19 pandemic has made it even more difficult.
“Saying goodbye is part of the healing process and all those feelings you have are normal,” said David Prescott, a psychologist and associate professor of public health at Husson University.
Because of the pandemic, many people have missed out on saying goodbye to loved ones, whether it be before they pass or because they were unable to hold a funeral.
“There’s a lot of anxiety, a lot of fear, a lot of grief being associated with not being able to be at the bed side or be in the room with their loved ones,” said Bernard Richardson, director of spiritual care at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center. “It’s been difficult.”
Richardson said they have not limited any services during the pandemic. They’ve even extended additional services to staff to keep them encouraged during this time.
People have not only been grieving loved ones but the loss of normalcy.
“Grief often hits a limited number of people, but with COVID, it hits everybody. We have all lost something,” Prescott said. “I think it’s really important to acknowledge you feel hurt or angry. You don’t want to stay in that state, but people who deny it tend to not deal with it as quickly as well.”
There are ways to overcome grief. Prescott recommends talking to people in similar situations about what you’re going through.
More importantly, take the time you need to process.
“During this time that we’re in, there’s a lot to grieve and so allowing yourself to be human, and to feel what you feel, and go back to whatever you need to do to take care of yourself,” Richardson said.