In Sharon's words: "Unfortunately, my beloved Mom passed away on July 15th, 2009. Overwhelmed with sadness and the reality of her loss, for the first time in my life I experienced planning for a funeral and the coordination of sitting shiva at my home.
It began as I sat down at the computer to communicate my feelings to family and friends. Contacting them by email was extremely helpful to me. It was fast and efficient, and spared me from repeated phone calls that I just couldn’t deal with at that time.
Several years ago my parents told me that their final arrangements had been made. I was quite surprised when my father showed me a contract for the cemetery only, realizing that they did not address the need for a funeral home. As I always search for whatever I need online, I used the internet to find Jewish funeral homes in our area. Because there was no pre-planning, we faced the reality of additional decisions, details and expenses… at the worst time possible. Again I sent out emails to inform friends and family of the arrangements.
Next came the confusion about the food. Who is sending what and when? Should I order food for people coming back to my house immediately after the funeral or will others be sending food at that time? Friends from out of town who wanted to send dinner were not familiar with the area and called to inquire about local restaurants. Despite their best intentions, platters were delivered when there was already plenty of food, rather than on other days when it would have been needed. As a somewhat stereotypical Jewish woman, my concerns about shiva food created unnecessary anxiety.
The next week I was asked to accept a fruit arrangement intended for a neighbor who had flown out of town to attend her Mother’s funeral. As she wasn’t expected back for several days the basket had to be returned. What a caring gesture by her friends, but at the wrong time and place.
That’s when I thought, increasing numbers of people rely on the Internet for information and to carry out everyday tasks in their business and personal lives. A website for a time of loss will decrease stress, confusion and waste.
ShivaConnect.com was created to be
a comprehensive resource …
providing information, coordination, assistance and comfort
to Jewish mourners, family and friends.
ShivaConnect is a tribute to my mother,
who always gave love and support to her
family and friends."