Planning a funeral used to be a taboo subject, but let’s face it dying is a part of life and it happens to all of us at some point in time.
Have you ever thought “what if?” What if I were to pass away suddenly? Would my family know what to do? Who would take the lead and organise my final farewell? Who knows all my personal details - date/place of birth, parents’, spouse’s, children’s details? Who needs to be contacted?
Having recently been involved in the organising of a funeral for my dear friend’s spouse I can say it is an intense time dealing with grief, differences of opinions and personalities, and the funeral arrangements. We were fortunate, we had warning, we had the discussion and we knew what he wanted.
So let’s think about burial or cremation? It would be a difficult decision if half the family believe you are to buried, whilst the other half believe you wanted to be cremated. Have it written in your will and tell your family.
Do you have specific people you would want to be pallbearers? Do you have any music/hymn/song preferences? Do you have any religious formalities that you would observed? Maybe there’s a special reading or poem you would want included in the service? Are there people you might want to speak at your funeral?
And then there’s the cost issue. Not all funeral package costs are all inclusive. Think about the extras like flowers or catering. Maybe there are people who can help with these things to minimise costs or maybe you would prefer to have that taken care of.
Your local funeral home or the Funeral Directors Association of New Zealand (Inc) http://www.fdanz.org/planning-your-own-funeral can provide you with a helpful booklet “My Life, My Funeral”. In it you can record your personal information and preferences for your funeral, a great help for your loved ones.