Why it’s important to plan your own farewell

I know it is a taboo subject, not easily discussed and difficult to face but it is not something that should be feared.  After all, it is inevitable and talking about it does not ‘jinx’ you into dying.

It is estimated that only 1 in every 9 people discuss their funeral wishes with their family or friends.  What a wonderful thing those 1 in 9 people have done.  They have helped their families during a time of imperceptible grief and relieved them of the worry of ‘doing the right thing.’ As a celebrant I have seen families deliberate and worry about all aspects of planning a funeral. They really want to give the person they have lost the funeral they would have wanted, but if they have not talked about it how would they know.

Writing down your wishes, allows your family and friends the time to free up space to take care of themselves during a time of grief.  The immediate days following the loss of a loved can see you in autopilot, being guided by other people and often in overwhelm.

A funeral director or celebrant will of course guide you through the process but by having given this a little thought the whole process can be easier and can help you to create a thoughtful and beautiful celebration of the life of your loved one.

There are lots of things for you consider and some of these will be discussed in future blog posts but for now, grab some paper, open up a document on your laptop or make a cup of tea and think about your final farewell.

Here are a few things to get you started.

  • Burial/cremation or natural/woodland burial
  • where your funeral should be held
  • where you want to be buried
  • where you would like your ashes to be scattered
  • whether you want flowers or donations at your funeral
  • how attendees should dress at your funeral
  • music choices
  • reading/poetry choices

Photo courtesy of naturalburial.org