Grand­child won­ders about fu­neral

Times Standard (Eureka) - - HOME + GARDEN - By Har­ri­ette Cole

Dear Har­ri­ette: My grandma died this week, and it is so sad. We weren’t able to visit her in her nurs­ing home or in the hos­pi­tal be­cause of the rules about COVID-19. Now it’s time for us to put her to rest. I can’t de­cide what to do. I could host a tiny fu­neral with 10 guests or fewer. Or I could wait in­def­i­nitely to host a big­ger event af­ter the gath­er­ing re­stric­tions are re­laxed. Or the fu­neral home sug­gested a vir­tual event. I don’t know what to do. What do you rec­om­mend? — End of Life

Dear End of Life: I am so very sorry for your loss. It is al­ways hard to lose a loved one. It is ex­po­nen­tially worse right now for the rea­sons you are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing. Not be­ing able to com­fort loved ones dur­ing their time of tran­si­tion can be ex­cru­ci­at­ing for all par­ties. Not be­ing able to say good­bye in a com­mu­nal mourn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence can feel in­com­plete. And yet, that is what we are charged with man­ag­ing these days.

What I’m learn­ing is that ev­ery fam­ily has to fig­ure out what works best for you and your fam­ily dy­nam­ics. A fair com­pro­mise for many peo­ple is a com­bi­na­tion event, where a small group of 10 or fewer can be in the space of the event. That way you can see one an­other’s faces and be with each other while prac­tic­ing so­cial dis­tanc­ing. At the same time, live-stream­ing the event is kind for all of the loved ones who are un­able to at­tend. If you can get the fu­neral home to han­dle the stream, it is great be­cause they are pro­fes­sion­als and are not emo­tion­ally in­vested in the event. They should be able to cap­ture ev­ery­thing. Con­sider sav­ing the broad­cast so that you can watch it again.

Dear Har­ri­ette: I have a num­ber of med­i­cal is­sues, and I had doc­tors’ ap­point­ments set up over the next few months to deal with them. Noth­ing is a med­i­cal emer­gency, but I do need to at­tend to some things.

It has been al­most im­pos­si­ble to get doc­tors’ ap­point­ments be­cause of the shut­down. I was told that I should not go to my doc­tors’ of­fices be­cause it could cause a health risk. In one case, my doc­tor was too busy deal­ing with the over­flow from coro­n­avirus pa­tients. Now sev­eral weeks have passed, and I am con­cerned that I am let­ting my is­sues go unat­tended. What can

I do to make sure that I stay on top of my health? I don’t think it’s smart to ta­ble my is­sues, even though this cri­sis is re­ally huge. — Mind­ing My Health

Dear Mind­ing My Health: Re­quest tele­health calls with your pri­mary care physi­cian and any other physi­cian you might need to speak with. Dur­ing this call, have a writ­ten list of ques­tions and con­cerns. Take notes about what is dis­cussed. If you think you need in­per­son fol­low up, re­quest it. Ex­plain why you feel this way, and re­quest a safe means of ad­dress­ing your med­i­cal is­sues. The more or­ga­nized and clear you are, the bet­ter your chances of find­ing the re­sults you de­sire.

Har­ri­ette Cole is a lifestylis­t and founder of DREAM LEAPERS, an ini­tia­tive to help peo­ple ac­cess and ac­ti­vate their dreams. You can send ques­tions to askhar­ri­ette@ har­ri­et­ or c/o An­drews McMeel Syn­di­ca­tion, 1130 Wal­nut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.

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