Friday, August 22, 2008

funeral preparations

Although pre-mature death is a cultural taboo (a "god forbid," if you will), it would be silly to live life as if we all expire at an old age.  I am very aware that despite my youth, I could die at any time.  Actually, that fact encourages me to live a more rewarding lifestyle, as any day could be the last.

Given this reality, I recently had a conversation with my dad about how I would like my body to be handled in the event of my sudden and premature death.  Particularly for those who would like preparations different than cultural or familial traditions, voicing these desires is important at any age.

Of course, there is an appropriate legal process that can guarantee one's wishes, but I think that if nontraditional methods are desired, it would be easier for the family to already be aware.


Kelly said...

I've thought about this a little. I recognize how much of a waste of land it is to bury dead bodies and maintain graveyards, but (ritualistic and egocentric as it sounds) I really want a "tombstone" or some kind of marker - call it a monument - to myself when I die. I just don't like the idea of being gone and having no tangible evidence left of my existence. Making an impact on society is one thing, but I really want physical evidence that I was once alive. Is that weird?

Vanessa said...

Not only is a casket and burial site a waste of earth, dumping yourself inside is a waste of your body.

Your organs can save lives, your carcass can teach students how to be doctors--or even develop research and other medical innovations.

I get the emotional need of leaving something behind--but seriously Kermie, how many generations will visit you? Two maximum--and that's if you are lucky. Not a marker is no one is visiting. Then it will be your decaying particles and your beloved tombstone co-mingling with corpse compost.

If you want to leave a marker, you can donate something to a community center, library, etc, and get one of those plaque things in the bricks...or a park bench.

Whoever gets your eyes or spleen or whatever else after you kick the bucket will appreciate you forever.