There are several aspects to pre-planning a funeral.
Firstly, what does that mean? It doesn’t mean paying up front and leaving it at that. It means giving careful consideration to each and every detail of your funeral. Dying is as auspicious and important as getting married and should be treated as such.
Why should you pre-plan? I believe it is a gift of love to your family. For those of us that have experienced the death of a loved one, whether it be sudden or expected, we are so often left at a loss about the funeral, because of the blatant trend of turning a blind eye until it’s on your doorstep.
Why do we do this?? Death is so definite that it confounds me as to why western society doesn’t embrace it with love, just as we do a birth or a marriage.
Wouldn’t it be far better to leave the opportunity for your family to be able to just grieve, without the added pressure of making difficult decisions about caskets and music and details that are sometimes too difficult to unravel in a short space of time. The whole process of grieving can be so different for each and every individual and when families come together to make decisions under these circumstances the results are not always good.
How do you pre-plan? Where do you start? Mark a date on your calendar and spend the day exploring your options, preferably with some small pampering activity included. You could even invite family/friends to join you if you like. Write down your thoughts and findings – The Bottom Drawer Book written by Lisa Herbert is a good place for that. http://thebottomdrawerbook.com.au/
You need to look at the choice of Funeral Directors available in your area. Which one is open to helping you organize a funeral that suits you?
If you are unable to find someone that is satisfactory, are there any Independent Funeral Planners in your area that may help?
Do you want it in a church/graveside/in a park/at the beach/no service at all?
Do you want to be cremated or buried?
Would you like to have a casket decorated to signify your own life?
What songs have great memories for you?
Are there any people that you would like mentioned as great influencers on your life?
Would you like to leave messages for anyone?
What would you like written on your headstone?
Do you want to record a message?
Who would you like to read your eulogy?
Do you want pictures at your funeral?
When you start the process you will find there is much to organize. And when you have finished it will feel exhilarating! Then you can get on with living, knowing that you have considered every detail and everyone’s emotional wellbeing.