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The most common feeling when you have a friend that will help is gratitude. You owe them their time and effort for being there for you when you need them, especially when you have lost your loved one. They are the ones who will carry the ashes box when you can't hold it because of the overflowing emotions you are dealing with inside. You can let them hold it for you, or they can help you carry it while walking beside you as you walk into the columbarium to put the box. 

When you are in the stage of mourning, you will care less about the people around you, and sometimes it is misinterpreted by other people that you are thanking them for being with you in times like this. But the people who know you well will understand your situation. It is okay that you feel aloof after you have lost a loved one that is normal. You don't have to feel sorry for them. 

The people would know that you are going through something that is not easy, and entertaining them is not in your head at that moment. You can thank them later when you are already feeling good and can manage to walk with a bit of a smile on your face. By that time, you are relaxed and ready to meet other people aside from your family. You can now visit the people there during the funeral and mourn with you, or hold a private gathering in your house to thank them. 

There are many ways you can thank the people who have been with you through thick and thin. Thus, it does not require lavish gifts and parties to thank them because the people who genuinely care for your feelings do not think of any exchange you can give them. Seeing you in good shape and recovering from pain will be a relief to them. And they will consider it as your payback with the time they have given.  

What does gratitude do to people? Is there a proper way to show appreciation to the people you want to say thank you to? Here are some of the things you may have to observe or experience that will remind you of how gratitude should be:

  • Gratitude can make people Smile. 

  • There are no words you can express to the people who have been there when you are down, and you need someone or people who you can lean on. But when you say thank you to them and tell them that you appreciate everything they do for you, it is enough to make them smile. And you gave them something that they can treasure for the rest of their lives, friendship. It is something no money can buy. It is a gem that you and the people you appreciate have. 

  • Gratitude can change lives. 

  • The word gratitude does not end when you already thank the people who help you, but it goes beyond what you imagine. It can give a chance to someone's life. Your thank you means life to someone because when they attend the funeral of your loved one and send condolences to you, they are going through hard times in their life too. But they choose to be with you because they don't want to be alone. 

    The thank you that you have given to them uplift their spirit, and your life becomes their inspiration because you have overcome the process of letting go of the pain. They have managed to step out of their comfort zone because of your thank you. Spending time with them has opened up their burdens because they have no one to talk about it. 

  • Gratitude can create peace.

  • When you think saying thank you will only mean that you appreciate the person, you can also make peace with it. When you have friends who have not spoken for days, months or years and attended the funeral separately, you invite them together to your small gathering. You can use the gathering as your way to let them talk things over and patch things up. If the fight is significant, it needs serious talking that needs to be done between them. But if it is only small things, you can help them using your gratitude. 

    It is because with you creating a gathering intended to thank the people around during your time of mourning, they will not have seen each other and have time to talk. Your gratefulness saved the day for them. 

    There is no proper way of returning the favour that the people have given you unless they will do things formally for an occasion, though. But you can pay them with the things they need when it comes time that they will need your help. You need to let your doors open for any help they would ask you, but you need to assist first if you can do it or beyond your capability.