Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Final Arrangements

I haven't been able to do much blog visiting this past week because of my mother's health crisis, and we've had out-of-town family staying with us to pay visits to Mom.

I think today we're going to circle the wagons and decide on Mom's "final arrangements," even though she has bounced back well, and we even were able to take her out for a trip to the nearby ocean. She was weak, but she was in seventh heaven to be at the seaside.

So everyone's been discussing their answers to the question: What final arrangements do YOU want?

Most of us want to be buried in a cardboard refrigerator box and put in the backyard, or cremated and ashes scattered in various places. The bottom line: cheap, cheap, cheap!

We don't know what our mother's wishes are in this regard, but since she used to wash out the paper towels and dry them for another use, we can safely assume she's in the cheap, cheap, cheap! contingent. I took her out to the cemetery two years ago to talk with the director about costs. She laughed when I asked what she wanted us to do with her body. "I won't be in it," she said, "so it doesn't matter to me!"

We all believe that it doesn't matter what survivors do with our shell, on account of our souls will take the express train to Heaven the minute we shuffle off this mortal coil. But it's good we're telling each other how to dispose of our remains now, while we're still kicking.

I'm going to fill out an advance directive and have my hubby fill out one too, so no one has to debate what to do with our corpses. I think it's a smart thing for everyone to do. So here's the link I'm using to download a directive that is legal in the 50 U.S. states. Just in case, you know, you're inspired to take a gander at it....

Have a happy day! I'll be back to blog visiting all of you in a day or two, I hope.

19 comments:

TechnoBabe said...

I downloaded and printed out the info for Nebraska. Thanks.
I really like your mom's comment "I won't be in it, so it doesn't matter to me!"

The Bug said...

When she was dying my mother would NOT discuss that fact, so we didn't talk about arrangements with her. But ever since I was small she had made it perfectly clear that she wanted to be cremated. Too many horror movies about people being buried alive - AND she was claustrophobic. She said that she knew it was irrational, but do NOT bury her. So we didn't. I have some of her ashes, my brother has some, daddy has some, & some are in a box at the cemetery - because her best friend needed a place to go to mourn.

Brian Miller said...

that can be a tough time especially if there is family with differing opions and no real direction...think we will do advanced directives as well..

Sam Liu said...

I'm sorry to hear of your mother's health crisis, but it's great that you're able to take it all in your stride. I loved your mother's response, "I won't be in it, so it doesn't matter to me!", that really made me smile...In truth, I haven't really contemplated what I want for my final arrangements, it's something I'll have to look into in the future, I guess.

Gabriella Moonlight said...

I am with you all, the soul will no longer be here in my shell, so just creamate me and place me in the ocean where I came from as hopefully the wings I sprout in death...will take me to new places.

I hope that your mom can decide, I am glad you have family there and just know that we here in the blogsphere are sending you love.
G

Syd said...

I have already made mine. Cremation it is. Thinking of you...

Monkey Man said...

My mom had very specific requests. I am so glad she was proactive on that account. Thanks for the link. I will use it.

Birdie said...

Chris, this almost sounds as the black English humor and I admit as serious this is, I had to laugh out loud when I read yours "so no one has to debate what to do with our corpses". I do agree with your mom, that we won't be in it, so it doesn't matter, but as right as she might be, still I agree with you that it is a good thing to have it clear out so that there is not more work for the ones who will stay as the pain of losing someone dear will already be big enough. Enjoy your days and lots of courage to you, dear one!

Prayer Girl said...

I remember how difficult it was for my dad and I to make arrangements when mom died. After that my dad made "ALL" his final arrangements so it would all be in place when he left us. It was a wonderful gift he gave us.

PG

Dianne said...

I was just talking about that yesterday. I heard a Russian trio at a music venue sing folksongs in harmony entirely in Russian. It made me want to hear them sing my poems. It made me want to have them sing at my wake. I didn't understand a word, but they filled the room with the sound of 20 voices. AHHH Dianne, she...was like>>>>>sunlight******on snow~~~~~~in the mountains!!!!!!La La La.

RNSANE said...

Many years ago, my mom donated her body to Emory University to be used after her death by medical students and docs to further their education. I'm thinking of doing the same - to one of the CA schools of medicine.

Alan Burnett said...

Mine will go to the Medical School. The Lad has just finished two years of dissection which is an essential part of his training and the supply of necessary bodies is an increasing problem.

Mrsupole said...

At least you have a little bit of an idea what your mom wants to have done. My dad left us with not even one little clue, so we followed the cheap, cheap, cheap method. It worked out just fine and everyone was happy with it. But it is nice to have an idea.

Thanks for the link, now if we could just get my mom to do one, then my hubby and me should also do one. Oh my, so much to do.

My prayers and thoughts are with you and take your time to spend it all with your mom and family. They are more important right now.

God bless.

Scott said...

God Bless you Chris... I pray for your peace, for your mom's peace and that you find the strength to deal with all of this. Take good care and make time for Chris and her art :-)

Marion said...

A super post, Chris, people need to know what it's like for survivors to try and figure out what the dying person wants.

They are making good changes to crematoriums...it used to be that the air pollution created by them was really bad, especially if it was situated in a densely populated area. But on the other hand, bodies filled with embalming fluid and buried in the earth was not great either.

I have chosen to be cremated at this point, but again, changes are coming regarding burial as well. I guess we'll see...I want my body to be disposed of in the most earth friendly way possible.

Take good care, Chris, I'll be thinking of you!

Poetic Shutterbug said...

It's something we don't like to think about but it is important to have this done so our loved ones do not have to decide what to do. I have years ago signed up as an organ donor.

Nana Jo said...

My mother and stepfather have purchased plots on either side of my brother, so that problem is solved. I plan to donate my body to science, that is if they want it.

I love the image of your mother enjoying her day out at the sea. Blessings to you, Chris.

Pat transplanted to MN said...

I guess because I have had to deal with so many deaths and funerals, we took care of our wishes long ago--cremation. Scatter ashes to the winds or the seas. Survivors of the dying have enough to do/face/attend to without having to consider what wishes might have been. As you know you can only do you best and leave the rest. Prayers to continue to uphold you....

Tamarind~ said...

This leaves a pain, within! Prayers~

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