When someone we have loved passes over the first thing we think of is the funeral. That old costly way that family, friends, loved ones, and not-so-loved ones show up to grieve their passing. For those of us who have had very close loved ones unexpectedly pass away it is a terrible last memory to have. I can’t even say how much I wish I did not have to see the lowering of my children’s caskets into the ground. The vision haunts me and the somberness of the moment just about traumatizes me.
The one thing that echos in my mind when I think of my crossed-over loved ones is they are still alive. They are just in another form without this clunky body to carry around with all of its earthly burdens. I’m willing to bet if we could just sit and ask how they are, they would say they are happy. If we were to ask them about the old funeral ritual I’m just about sure they will not be all that impressed by those who thought paying respect to them was meaningful after they left their bodies.
I shake my head when I think of the family arguments, and issues with so-called friends. Then there is the torment that happens after someone passes and people struggle with their funeral attendance. People get hurt because they can’t go, feel guilty when they don’t go, and others get upset when they do go. It’s all so ridiculous when I think about it. More issues are made about funerals than people need to create.
I have a better idea. Why not honor the people we love while they are here? As long as they know, and have known, we have loved them isn’t that what truly matters? Saying goodbye is not easy. I said goodbye to my daughter long before she was lowered into the ground. I did it in my heart. I know she felt it because love NEVER dies. Can we even imagine if I had not gone to my own daughter’s funeral? Of course, I felt I had to go. Society makes me feel that way. In all honesty, I would have been much better off without those last images in my mind. They cause me more grief than her passing. In all honesty, I could have done without the “sermon” given by an unknown pastor who never knew my daughter and could not possibly memorialize her. It was the same with my son. The more important issue is that they knew I loved them. My mother knew I loved her. I still love them! I always will.
Love the people who are here in body NOW. If you can’t see them then TELL them! Life always has a flow of its own and we can’t be all places at all times. Technology gives us the wonderful opportunity to give our loved ones those last “I love yous” we so long to give. Even without them, love already “knows”.
It’s just about insane to get all “butt hurt” because of funeral issues. As long as we know, and our loved ones knew. that love was there it’s all that has ever mattered. They live on. We don’t have to believe that but I do. I’m sure they can do without bickering over property left behind. who attends the funeral and whose presence is wanted or not. So leave the guilt behind. If you know in your heart the feelings that were there, then that is all that is important.
As for me; I think I will skip the funeral arrangements. My parents did the same. They were both cremated with no big funeral issue. Frankly, I adore them for that. I don’t see how gathering with people to cry would have made it all that better. I am skipping that part. I will be smiling in my new form, knowing those who loved me cared enough to respect me while I am HERE and not in a ritual where I am lowered into the ground and everyone has to watch.
Agree with me or not. It’s ok.
Loving you from here,
Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry
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