I know it’s depressing to talk about death, loss and bereavement but some recent events made me think more and more about this topic.
|Sose and Allen|
A couple of months ago, the sudden death of a young repat couple, Sosé and Allen shook the whole repat community in Armenia. The funny thing is that for most of us who move to Armenia, we mostly think of how to make it here, how to find a job, build a home, find our place. We rarely reflect on how we will die here on this land. I know that this can be a depressing topic for some but I wanted to share it anyways, since it’s been haunting me for the past months. I think being a mom of four kids is adding also on the stress of thinking on these issues.
|You can climb Ararat|
A couple of years ago, when Levon, a middle-aged repat passed away alone of a heart attack in his apartment while his family was in the US, I started thinking of different scenarios of what I would do if I was faced with such a tragedy. How do you deal with these issues in a new country? How do you think and keep sane when you don’t have immediate family close by? One day, I asked a repat friend where he wanted to get buried if he died in Armenia? He looked at me shocked and started panicking. First he said “here, on this land”, then he wasn’t so sure. He thought of his family there. He felt that he belonged there as well. Then, of course he changed the topic. Who wants to talk about death when you came on this land to live with so many hopes and plans, right?
Each culture has its own way of expressing and dealing with grief and mourning. Armenia, in this area, is still very much influenced by former Soviet Union customs and traditions: meaning every single detail is dealt in the family not in funeral homes (as we know it in the west).