Now, I don't mean I don't want to die -- I'm not ready to go yet but I'm comfortable with the idea, if that makes sense. Like most people, I think our fear comes from the dying process, not death itself. For a Christian, death is only the portal to another, better life. And, yeah, I believe that. I also believe I'll see people who have gone before me. And dogs. Lots of dogs. I imagine I'll be put to work in the heavenly kennels. You can imagine what I hope dogs don't do in heaven.
I accompanied my mother to a funeral this afternoon. It was for the son of one of her friends. He'd been found dead several days ago -- heart attack, they think. I was thinking, as I sat there, that it must be the worst thing in the world to lose a child -- no matter how old you or the child was -- and that it was something I absolutely could not -- and don't want -- to comprehend. I didn't know the man and had only met his mother a couple of times but she and my mother have been friends awhile (even though this friend's husband sort of "hits" on my mother -- take into account they are all in their 80s). I guess I shouldn't really mention that but, honestly, it cracks me up. It drives my mother up the wall -- and, yet, I think it sort of flatters her, too. But I digress...
I told Mark -- and the kids -- that I want to be cremated when I go. I also told the children to mix my and Mark's ashes together (eventually) -- along with all the dog's -- then put us all in one big urn together. You should see the faces my (all grown or nearly) children made. But, hey, I'm serious about this. But, as Mark says, are you really going to care at that point? Well, no. But I care now and I think it's important to honor someone's last wishes because they certainly aren't getting any more of them.
Going to a funeral makes me think of my own send-off. I know some folks have a pre-cremation viewing. No, thanks. Don't be looking at me like that, wearing something I'd never wear. Come to think of it, I don't really want a funeral, either -- I want a celebration -- of my life, not my death. I'm not saying there can't be some somber moments but, hey, talk about the good stuff -- and I hope there'll be some good stuff to say, though sometimes I wonder about myself in my worst year-round-bah-humbug moments.
And, here's another thing -- don't break your neck getting to my funeral/celebration if you didn't say "boo" to me while I was alive. I do realize that sometimes we go to funerals for the sake of the living, not for the deceased -- who we may not have even known -- but it seems that folks sometimes attach too much importance to the funeral, not to the life. Sorry -- I know this cute little emoticon doesn't quite work but it's as close as I could get on short notice.
So, when it's my time, I hope those left behind will do as I've requested: Put the fun in funeral.
And, if my wishes can't be followed, do expect some paranormal activity.