Make time today to discuss your death arrangements with a spouse, friend, or family member. Then take practical action: complete your will, write your eulogy, and plan the funeral arrangements in practical terms. At the end of the day, reflect on these questions:
- Did you procrastinate on these tasks today? Why? Why not?
- Did you feel these tasks were important or relevant to your life right now? Why? Why not?
- How might engaging in these tasks hold power for you in both practical and spiritual terms?
It would really freak out my parents if I called them up to discuss my funeral plans, and–to be honest–only Shea would really “get it.” So I’ll call her tomorrow, I suppose: it’s too late to disturb her now. But, for the record, this is what I’d like done:
- I want to be buried at Boone-Hutchinson Cemetary. Some of the best times of my life happened at that place, and I can’t think of anything better. The burial, however, is rather optional. If my family wants me to be cremated, I’m down for that, too. I rather think it would be neat to split my ashes up a bit…scatter some in Boone-Hutch, maybe scatter some out here in Pioneer Cemetary, and ship some off with Shea to Ireland so she can chuck me off the Cliffs of Moher. Of course, I have no money, so I’m not particularly sure how a funeral would be arranged. Shove me in a pine box. Lay off the wake.
- As far as my will goes…I really don’t have anything. All my financial things–IRAs, bank accounts, investments, bonds–I’d like those to go to Zach. He could use a leg up, especially for an education. After that, I just have things. My books would go to Rachel–that’s a long-standing arrangement. My Wicca things would go to Natalie. All my (painstakingly accumulated) kitchen things would probably go to my mom, but seeing as she’s got quite the kitchen herself, she might want them to go elsewhere. Perhaps she and Shea could split them? I think Shea would get a kick out of the Kitchen Aid. The co-op can have all the furniture and linens I’ve got here. My clothes can get sent to the Salvation Army. My family can have my movies and files, and really anything of mine that they feel particularly drawn to. That basically does it for my worldly possessions.
- It would be nice to figure out some of the more practical things–formalizing a legal will, getting life insurance so that my funeral won’t be a financial burden to anyone. But I don’t have money for premiums or lawyers. To be honest, this is something I need to be a ‘real grown-up’ to do. And by ‘real grown-up,’ I mean gainfully employed.
- Spiritually, confronting and planning for my inevitable exit rather helps me realize that I don’t have infinite time on my hands. In this life, I only have a set number of days, and I need to take advantage of each of them. Lying around in bed watching TV is not how I want to spend it. I want to be a fully realized person, not a shadow or a pawn.