100,000+ US citizens have now died from COVID-19. 100,000 of your neighbors, business owners, grandmothers, school children, doctors, policemen, grocery workers, housekeepers, EMTs, and others who have suffered tremendously from COVID-19 and lost the battle.
Consider that each person who died had a close relationship with at least ten and probably more people in their lives. When I multiply 100,000 times those 10 friends, family members, and co-workers, that means that over one million people in this country are grieving the death of someone who died from COVID-19. They grieve for someone who most likely died either alone in a hospital or with a nurse holding a phone to their ear so they could hear good-byes from those who cared about them.
I have sat with both clients and friends as they face grief and have experienced it myself many times over. The changes that occur in people’s lives after someone dies are monumental and overwhelming.
Those changes happening during this pandemic are even more daunting, as contact with friends and family members is limited due to a possibility of exposure to COVID-19. The grieving isn’t limited to those who have lost loved ones.
Grief is experienced by those currently sick with the virus, those scared of the virus, those who risk their lives to go to work, those who have no job, those who worry about feeding their families, those who are at risk of losing their homes, those separated from family members, those who lost classroom experience with friends and teachers, those who lost businesses, and many other losses.
Remember that grief or bereavement affects us all in many ways. Feel your feelings, speak them out loud to someone who understands and does not judge you. Seek out further help if you need it.
Stay well and stay safe, and just love your neighbors. Love those one million.