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Not Alone

“All my friends are dead!” Those heartbreaking words were uttered by a lifelong family friend as we stood together at the the coffin where my grandmother’s body rested. My spirit ached for her as I watched tears fall down those beautiful cheeks. At this point in life my friend was already over 90 years old and had lived a long life full of love and laughter, friendship and memories. She remains one sweetest, most beloved individuals you would ever meet. Yet aside from her devoted son, who stood at her side, she feels alone.

Due to her limited mobility and the passage of time she feels that life has cast her aside. Outside the walls of her home everything moves at the customary pace, while she is sitting still. She can no longer be a part of most of the activities that used to give her joy and community. The community she used to be a part of is also dwindling because over the decades she has watched as, one by one, her friends left this earth.

“It’s so special that you could be here today,” I said.

“I’m not special,” she replied, so I hugged her as tightly as I could to show her differently.

It made me realize that I needed to be intentional about showing her on a regular basis just how special she was. It’s not enough to hug her every chance I get, I need to make the opportunities happen.

Our lives are so busy, and it is easy to get caught up in the flurry of endless schedules. Sometimes that means we sacrifice human connection and waste what little time we have left with those we love. It may make us feel very alone. In the meantime, there may be people who love us who also feel alone.

Life can go by very quickly. If we aren’t intentional about making time to spend with those we care about we may discover one day that it’s too late.

Today I encourage you to make sure that no one you love feels left behind. Slow down and reach out. Go give them hugs, a LOT of hugs, every chance you get. Talk. Listen. Remind them that they are not alone. In the process you just might realize that you are not alone, either.


Jennifer Roberts Bittner
Certified Celebrant/ Life Tribute Specialist

Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Service
6500 Iron Bridge Rd.
N. Chesterfield, VA 23234
(804) 275-7828

Matoaca, VA Cremation Service: Helping a Spouse Through Grief

Having a loved one go through a mourning period can be heartbreaking. Most people do not know how to best offer comfort when it comes to a death. This is something that Matoaca, VA cremation service providers see all the time, especially among married people. If your spouse is grieving and you are at a loss about what to do, we have some suggestions that can make this difficult time easier for both of you.

Listen Actively

Probably the most important thing you can do for your spouse is to listen to them. Many people try to hide their grief from their partners, so it can be very good ifuneral home and cremationsdea to let them know that crying and expressing themselves is completely fine. Once your loved one starts speaking about how they feel, try not to interrupt. Ask a few questions but be sure you are actively listening. It may seem like a simple thing to do, but it can make going through a mourning period much easier.

Offer Specific Help

Most people make vague offers of help when trying to provide it for a loved one, but the best thing to do is to offer specific assistance. Why not offer to cook a meal or to go shopping for them? When going through a grieving period, everything can demand a huge effort, so having someone who will do small tasks can be a huge benefit for your loved one. Cremation service providers in Matoaca, VA see this all of the time and they know that even running small errands for your grieving spouse can be of invaluable help.

Be a Spokesperson

Lots of people will want to offer their condolences to your loved one. For many, this can be an exhausting thing since it can require phone calls and hosting people in your home. Not everyone is up to this while grieving. If your spouse is not, it is up to you to become their spokesperson. You can make those phone calls and receive people at the house without disturbing your loved one. You can also be the one to send out the invitations for the funeral services. These easy things can make a huge difference in the stress level your loved one has as they go through their grieving process.

Offer Comfort

Simple comforts like running a hot bath, offering your spouse a massage, or lots of other things can be a way to help them relieve some stress. It does not have to be something elaborate in order to be effective. Anything that can bring your loved one a sense of well-being can help them heal a bit faster.

Knowing what to do for a spouse who has lost a loved one can ensure that your own stress levels do not get too high. By listening and offering specific help, you will be doing what your spouse most needs. A Matoaca, VA cremation service provider like ours, Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Services, can provide you with even more information. We are located at 6500 Iron Bridge Rd. Richmond, VA 23234 and you can reach us at 804-275-7828. Call now!

How to BE Angry

“How to BE Angry”

What do we do with anger? The issue isn’t if we will get angry, because, if you’re human you will get angry. The question is, “What do we do with the anger inside us?” To be clear; anger is a normal human emotion. Anger is not right or wrong. It is a component of our human wiring. Feeling angry is not sinful. As a former pastor, I have heard so many people tell me that they needed to ask for God’s forgiveness because they felt angry. They were taught that they must never feel angry. That would be like telling someone they should never feel sad. In fact, if we are not angry over a senseless loss of life, or injustice, we need to ask ourselves why.

When it comes to anger, it’s a matter of how we process it.

We need to remember that anger is one of the stages of grief. We often grieve in misunderstood anger. We might not even know why we’re angry. We might be angry just because no one seems to understand our grief. Let’s face it, people can say some incredibly ignorant things to grief-stricken people. Number one on my “Don’t Say That” list is, “It was God’s will.” I cringe when I hear someone say that. I mean, how can you argue with God? Number two is saying to a mother who has lost a baby, “You’re young, you can have another baby”; as if she can just replace that one of the litter with another one! Number three is, “God needed another angel in heaven”. Seriously? First off, contrary to cartoons and movies, we don’t become angels when we die! Angels are God created unique heavenly beings of their own, not transformed humans. Second, it doesn’t bring comfort to imply that a selfish God took something away from them. Believe me, sometimes it’s better to simply give a compassionate hug and say nothing.

So, in our grief, is it really O.K to be angry? God says, “Yes”, It’s normal to be angry, but BE sure to…” 


In other words, don’t repress it. Delayed anger becomes volatile. The longer it’s pushed down, the more destructive it is when it comes out. Anger was never intended to last long! Long-lasting anger becomes an embedded inner struggle that will color everything we do. The insidious nature of unresolved anger is that a pattern of angry behavior is easily established. It’s commonly called being “hot tempered”.


Maybe there really is a reason why God gave us only one mouth and two ears! The root of a “quick temper” is insecurity. Secure people are willing to listen; able to think it through and respond rather than react. God is simply telling us to avoid developing a habitual “short fuse”; because of unresolved anger.


We’ve all heard it before, “Are you upset?” “No, I’m not upset.” But you know you’d better steer clear of them for a while! We need to need to admit it to ourselves. It is emotionally healthy to say to someone, “I am really angry right now.” Depression is defined as “Anger turned inward”. There are people we encounter everyday who have refused to confront their anger for years and are physically and emotionally sick.


Express anger respectfully. Don’t vent! Be aware of your anger and do not react while angry. We need to consider that a verbal explosion can be as damaging as a punch with the fist. Whatever you do don’t send that text message or that emotionally charged e-mail while still angry. And please – don’t resolve it publicly on Facebook or Twitter.


Remember that anger, like sadness, is a normal human emotion. However, anger serves as a warning light for the human mind. It’s our inner indicator that we are vulnerable to regrettable behavior. The strange thing is that the anger warning sign is different for each person I knew a guy in college who would smile right before he would throw a devastating punch! 


The best way to process anger peacefully is through dispensing grace. It’s realizing that casting blame in anger doesn’t resolve anything. Anger can be the result of deep feelings of regret. In our grief, we are often desperate for answers that might never come. The truth is, the reason we are so angry is because we are grieving over loss; loss of a loved one, loss of time, loss of health; even the loss of what could have been. Sometimes we are even angry with the one who died. By the way – it’s OK to be angry at God. He’s a big God and he can take it.

Remember that anger is a normal part of the grieving process. And if you feel stuck, reach out to a pastor or counsellor to help you work through your grief.


Greg Webber                                           

Director, Community Care/Aftercare

Certified Celebrant

Morrissett Funeral & Cremation Service

How to Read an Ameila, VA Funeral Home Services Price List

After a loved one dies, it can be very important to start getting information on the funeral arrangements you want for them. Checking prices and services can be essential if you want to get the best rates. For people who are on a budget, this can be crucial. But how do you read an Ameila, VA funeral home price list? We have some things to keep in mind when beginning this process.

General Services

The first thing you should look for is the list of general services. This will give you an drop-2931984_960_720idea of the price ranges that the most basic of services will cost. These services can include the basic services of speaking with a funeral director, embalming, cost of removal and transport of body to the funeral home, viewing charges, direct cremation fees, immediate burial fees, other preparations of the body, and graveside services. If you do not see these on the price list, it is very important that you ask, since you do not want to have issues in the future.

Basic Non-Declinable Fees

Many fees the funeral home may charge are extras, such as embalming. They cannot force you to get a body embalmed if you do not want to. Other services, however, are not options. These include death certificate filing fees, filing for Veteran benefits, preparing the obituary or notification of death, obtaining all permits, and a few other overhead charges that the funeral home in Ameila, VA might have.

What to Know

Apart from the basic fees and the general services that you decide on, you do not have to pay for anything extra. The funeral home cannot force you to pay for embalming or for the purchase of a casket or urn from them. It is important to note that if you have decided on cremation for your loved one, it is best to make certain that the crematory is included in the rate they gave you. Sometimes they are not and you can end up with a much higher price than you expected. For burial, too, the cemetery will have its own charges, so you will need to know what the fees you will actually cover. Another thing to know is that embalming is never mandatory except for in a few special cases. One of these is if you are transporting the body across state lines.

By knowing how to read the price list for an Ameila, VA funeral home, you can rest assured regarding what you will be paying for. Some businesses are more reputable than others and will make everything clear from the start, but others try to get you to pay for more fees than are necessary. By knowing what to expect, you will be able to save yourself stress, time, and money. Come visit Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Services at 6500 Iron Bridge Rd. Richmond, VA 23234 to learn more. Schedule an appointment by calling 804-275-7828!

Have You Chosen the Right Funeral Home in Bon Air, VA?

A loved one who has passed on is always a hardship. Grief can be debilitating and can make everyday tasks difficult. This is why having a good funeral home on your side can be vital. When choosing a funeral home in Bon Air, VA, it is very important to know what makes for a good one. There are a number of signs you should look for that can ensure you have chosen the right provider.

Look for Service Options

You do not want to be limited in how you lay your loved one to rest. If you are planning friendship-2156171_960_720on a traditional burial, this might not be of such importance, but if you are looking for different options, like bio-cremation, then you do need to ask about the services. Not every funeral home can provide all of these options. You can find this information online, since most funeral homes have websites now.

Are the Rates Right?

Before visiting a funeral home, be sure to do a bit of homework on the average rates for the different services. You want to make certain that the funeral home you are considering offers services at rates that are within that average. You do not want to choose a provider that charges much more but you also do not want one that charges much less, because this can mean they are not doing things properly. In Bon Air, VA, the funeral home you choose should be one that has clear rates for all of their services.

Employees are Ready to Help

It can be extremely frustrating to need help and not be able to get it. A funeral home has to be able to ensure that all of your questions and concerns will be answered. The right funeral home will have employees available at all hours and they will always be respectful and sympathetic to what you are going through. It may not seem like a major issue, but you will be glad to have people on your side who will treat you well as you struggle with grief.

Clean and Orderly Space

Visit the funeral home before making any decisions. You want to find a funeral home that is always clean and orderly, without any strange smells or trash of any kind. Many people skip this step and try to do everything online or through the phone, but it is not a good idea. It is vital that you visit the space before you make any decisions.

These are the signs to look for when beginning the search for a funeral home. Funeral homes in Bon Air, VA are known for their attention to detail and for their desire to help their clients as much as possible. At Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Services, we provide quality services as well as an assurance to having as positive an experience as possible. We are located at 6500 Iron Bridge Rd. Richmond, VA 23234. Call 804-275-7828 right now!

Frequently Asked Questions for Cremations in Colonial Heights, VA

Cremations have become much more common in the past few decades. This is because people have realized that it can be a less costly alternative than traditional burial and that it can also help the environment in a way that burial cannot. If you are thinking of having a loved one cremated, there are probably a few questions you may have about the process. Below we have the most asked questions about cremations in Colonial Heights, VA.

Is Embalming Necessary?hand-in-hand-2065777__340

Embalming can be an added expense that not everyone wants to pay for. Cremation does not need there to be any embalming at all, though some do choose to have it anyway. If you are planning on having a viewing before the cremation, it can be a good idea to go for embalming, since it will preserve the body for the occasion. If not, there is no need for it and the funeral home cannot force you to choose that option.

What Size Urn is Right?

Urns come in a variety of sizes. Depending on the weight of the individual whose ashes it will hold, one option might be better than another. The majority of adult urns hold up to 200 cubic inches. Larger ones are companion urns, where two sets of ashes can be held. These usually have room for up to 400 cubic inches. If you want to divide the ashes among the family, then a keepsake urn can be a good idea. There are urns for children, as well, and infants. Ask a company in Colonial Heights, VA for cremations information to ensure you are choosing the right urn.

Is Buying the Urn from the Funeral Home a Must?

No. You can purchase the urn from anywhere. Some people buy them online while others have containers already that they want to use. Depending on your personal preference, you can buy from wherever you like and the funeral home cannot do anything to stop you.

What can be Done with Remains?

There are a number of things that you can do with the remains once you receive them. You can scatter the ashes in a meaningful location, or you can place them in keepsake urns to keep at home. You can purchase a niche in a columbarium at a cemetery so that you can visit when you want to. There are other options, too, such as placing the ashes with seeds that will grow into a tree or shrub.

All of these questions are ones that are common from people who are choosing cremation over burial of a loved one. Speaking with the funeral home you have chosen can ensure that you get answers to any concerns you may have. With cremations in Colonial Heights, VA, we at Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Service can help. We will provide all the answers you need. Visit us at 6500 Iron Bridge Rd. Richmond, VA 23234 or call us at 804-275-7828!

The Death of a Parent

When we are children our parents care for us. Eventually many people find themselves in a position of caring for ailing parents and eventually losing them. Several individuals have shared their thoughts and feelings following such an experience.


It is a bittersweet thing to find to care for an ailing parent after an entire lifetime of being cared for by them. “It was the hardest thing I ever had to do. Seeing my mom lose the love of her life was (also) very hard.”

An individual may find themselves feeling like they are a child again, yet faced with some very complicated tasks. Others find that they feel like an adult for the first time. One wrote that, years later, “I still find myself a grieving my father in a way that I never expected. It comes at me unexpectedly sometimes inconveniently and must always be addressed even if I don’t want to. Another thing that I have realized since my father passed is that I never felt old until he died. Now it seems as though my own mortality weighs on me in a way it never did before.”

An older teen shared what it was like to lose her father, as well as her concern for her mother and younger siblings. She said that the hardest part was, “…watching your other parent hurt and not being able to help them. Also not being able to explain to younger siblings who don’t understand that they aren’t coming back. People also end up stop asking how you’re doing about two months after and then you have to deal with the feelings by yourself because you don’t want your feelings to be a burden and make someone else sad.”

Some also felt that they were not given the opportunity to grieve. This could be because of complicated family dynamics, or because they had to be strong for others. Sometimes the logistics and planning necessary was so overwhelming that it kept them from being able to stop and feel any emotions or process their thoughts.

More than one person shared that they were overwhelmed by the helplessness, frustration, sadness, and even anger they felt at watching their parents struggle with illness. They questioned choices made by doctors and caregivers. Following the death of their parent many struggled with guilt and wondered if more could have been done.

Facing the reality of the loss and even future holidays can also be hard. As one person wrote, “The hardest for me has been that I won’t ever hear my dad’s voice, knowing I won’t buy another Father’s Day, birthday or Christmas gift.”

Death is difficult to face whether it occurs suddenly or after a prolonged period of illness. When it is sudden many experience feelings of regret or unfinished business and wish they had more time to do or say certain things. Yet even when we have time to say goodbye to someone and they have time to put their affairs in order it still feels like a surprise when we finally lose them. One person explained it as, “Denial on my part, I suppose.”

There may be a sense of relief because a parent is no longer suffering, even in the midst of grief, as heartrendingly described by one person, “Losing my mom was like taking a bullet through my soul. But still not as hard as watching her suffer. I talk to her all the time.”

Some stated that they lost their sense of grounded-ness and connection following such an intense loss. When the parental relationship was less than ideal, however, there may be complicated emotions over what never was. As one wrote, “My mother was a wonderful person, and my best friend, and I miss her. I’ve seen some people suffer in a different way than me, though, when the parent was abusive or difficult. These adult kids never get what they were looking for all their lives from that parent, and then one day they have to come to terms with the fact that they never will.”

One person shared that they felt both gratitude and grief, even after much time had passed. “There is gratefulness for the life he lived and the amazing husband, father, and grandfather he was. And there is sorrow because my children… didn’t get nearly enough time to know this incredible man. There is fear that they won’t remember him or the happier moments… So now, we adjust. We pick up the pieces and look at them and see what the new picture looks like when they all get glued together.”

Another wrote that she had a delayed reaction to her father’s death but that she still find comfort in memories and in unexpected events that bring him to mind seem to be a sign. She said, “We miss him every day and see him everywhere. He let’s us know when he is around… and things I have never remembered I remember now at just the right moment.”

Just as each person’s relationship with their parents is unique, so are our experiences with grief. In closing, the words of this beautiful and heartfelt poem seemed a fitting tribute to the love between a parent and child. They were written by Beverly Bollman following the passing of her mother. It is called, “When Jesus Took Our Mother Home.”

Our mothers love was strong and fierce.
She loved her children with all her heart.

She fought to stay with us
But Jesus had other plans.

She fought her battle hard
She didn’t want to leave us.

As she made her journey
The veil between heaven and earth lifted

Jesus was making a place for her
As her time was drawing near.

We held her hand and kissed her head
Sending our love with her on her journey.

As peace and comfort rested upon her
Her journey was complete

What a joyous time in heaven
When Jesus took our mother Home


Jennifer Roberts Bittner
Certified Celebrant/ Life Tribute Specialist

Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Service
6500 Iron Bridge Rd.
N. Chesterfield, VA 23234
(804) 275-7828