We tend not to put the same time into planning a funeral ceremony that we put into planning a wedding. Why is that? It’s no less important as a life milestone. In fact, some might consider it THE milestone after birth.
Our research shows that it’s less about taboo and more … “well, I don’t have to do it now…”
For 1 in 4, death comes suddenly – all the more reason to get plans sorted and filed so you’re never caught short. For most people though – 3 out of 4 – we will die on a fairly predictable trajectory. It goes one of two ways: illness > failing health > death or ageing > failing health > death.
So there’s no reason why we shouldn’t think just get on with planning a funeral ceremony for ourselves … take the weight off others. (The number one motivator according to our research.)
For a couple months, I’ve been working with a couple women planning their wedding ceremony in December in the Scottish hills.
It’s a special spot for them. For one, her dad and his whole street played football there back in the day when one person in the street had a car and everyone piled in. His ashes are scattered there. And it became a special spot for both of them when one proposed to the other.
They are using the elements and a circle of life as symbols in their ceremony. Fire burns in wood logs acting as candles and way markers. Glasses with candles host a flame passed from one to another representing the joining of two souls. The clear hill water in the burn bubbles past. The air carries our words. Two circles of friends and family represent the circle of life around our ceremony.
We could just as easily be out here together plotting and planning a funeral ceremony that would take place at some indeterminate time in the future on a day where all those gathered would know that this was a cared about, owned, loved rite of passage.
The choice is ours to take.