Plan Your Own Funeral
Making plans for your funeral is easy to delay.
Whatever your current state, remember this: the customary warning signs of death do not always apply. Surgeons will tell you that they spend their lives delving into the interiors of people who thought they’d be going home that very day, as every day.
If you’re going to sit down and plan your funeral, make plans for the process which leads up to it: your dying.
Die Informed and Prepared
Dying for most of us is going to be not a sudden event but a long process. One of the benefits of modern medicine is that it has greatly extended the misery.
You can prevent this.
Your end-of-life plan needs to deal in detail with the following:
the disposal of your money and your things plus final instructions and directions to those who will have to settle your affairs when you’re dead.
How you are looked after in your last days.
Who will speak and act for you when you can no longer do so for yourself and other questions where you die at home or in nursing home, the way you die under medications, will you donate you organs or body to science.
How your dead body will be disposed of (burial or cremation). Your funeral ceremony and celebration afterwards
One of the reasons why people don’t talk about death is that no one will listen. We need to talk and listen.
However reluctant they are, you will need to try to talk to those closest to you about how you would like to make your funeral plans because, if you want them to be your advocates, you’ll need their active involvement. Tell them that if they truly love you they will listen. Tell them that, when you can no longer speak for yourself, you will urgently need them to be there to speak and act for you.
In the face of any initial reluctance you need to be persuasive because you need their agreement. You need to negotiate face to face in order to reach an understanding. You need to listen and, perhaps, give ground.
Your goal is to engage willing collaboration.
Talking about your death is likely to upset those you talk to. It may well upset you, too. But when you have done it, you are all likely to feel that sense of relief which comes with having dealt with an unspoken dread.
When the time comes, those closest to you will be informed, prepared and empowered. They will be able to be useful, and they’ll like that.
If you can’t find anyone who will listen, you have no alternative but to write down what you want and hope that someone will act on it.
You will be able to transmit your care wishes through a living will and these will be respected.
Funeral Costs and Death
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