The 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil gave the U.S. and every country so much to celebrate. There were first time winners, multi-record breakers, and those who may not have won, but definitely made themselves known (Ryan Lochte, anyone?). But what does this have to do with Cremation Jewelry?
Through all of the high times of the Olympics, we took time to memorialize and honor past Olympians who are no longer with us, but gave us something to celebrate in their success. This got us at Treasured Memories™ thinking about how people use our Cremation Jewelry: What if instead of thinking of the passing of role model or a loved one as something to grieve, but rather, an occasion to gather and celebrate their lives?
Rio as we saw it was large crowds filling the beach for sun and togetherness, and when it comes to bereavement practices, you’ll see the same. Brazilians have a saying: “Se você está sofrendo, eu estou sofrendo” which translates to, “If you’re suffering, I’m suffering”.
Because the cost of a burial is so high in Brazil, after a loss, the most common practice is cremation- usually done within 24 hours of a loved one’s passing. During this time, the entire extended family –no matter the distance- will gather around the bereaved and there they will remain at least a full seven days. On the seventh day, the family will surround themselves and the deceased with flowers.
Some perceive this as a long grieving practice and that Brazilian “. . . rituals may act to worsen, and not ease the pain of the bereaved” (Scheinfeld), but we believe it is the contrary.
With such a fast response time, the bereaved don’t have much time to process the loss. This is remedied by family members offering their support and gifts like cremation jewelry and personalized memorial gifts, allowing for the bereaved to reflect on good memories (which help to create the celebration!). And the younger generations of Brazil agree.
Beth Scheinfeld, an Indiana University researcher of familial grief and bereavement published in her article, (A Brazilian’s Description of Grief and Bereavement Practices) “Younger generations rarely display the dramatic reaction their elders commonly practiced,” creating a new tradition by “comforting themselves . . . remembering pleasant moments and fun times with the deceased”. Day of the Dead Celebrations are even becoming more popular amongst Brazil’s youth.
The new Brazil says “Se você está sofrendo, eu estou sofrendo” not only speaking to a common grief, but to a sense of togetherness and in the celebration of life.
This is what we at Treasured Memories® believe in; Timeless cremation jewelry That Keeps a Secret® of that one perfect memory you will celebrate of a loved one forever.
So, to celebrate Rio, and to celebrate the lives that have touched our own, Treasured Memories Keepsakes® is launching a Celebration of Life Campaign! We will publish weekly posts beginning this October, sharing global rituals of bereavement right here on our blog. For updates to our Celebration of Life Campaign, subscribe or keep in touch.
Until then, Se você está sofrendo, eu estou sofrendo.
Your grief is our togetherness.
- Novais, Andréa. “Funeral Customs in Brazil.” The Brazil Business, Fujikawa, 24 Jan. 2014, http://thebrazilbusiness.com/article/funeral-customs-in-brazil.
- Scheinfeld, Beth. “A Brazilian’s Description of Grief and Bereavement Practices.” Grief in A Family Context, K. Gilbert, 1997, http://www.indiana.edu/~famlygrf/culture/scheinfeld.html.
*All images Courtesy of Getty Images. TMK does not claim ownership of the images included.