Dealing with the death of a loved one can be extremely difficult and the added pressure of planning a funeral can make the experience almost unbearable for some – but this doesn’t have to be the case. We know that planning a funeral has always been a taboo subject in our British culture, with many of us choosing to take the traditional stiff upper lip approach. It’s considered normal to avoid talking about death and making arrangements for our own funeral is almost unheard of, in everyday conversation at least. It’s often regarded as a ‘depressing’ topic with many feeling awkward or uncomfortable talking about dying or death. But we think it’s time for a change in perspective and to start seeing death more as a moment of celebration of life, and not solely about mourning.
Planning your own funeral can be a scary thought or prospect but, by doing this, you will be able to personalise the experience, have what you really want to the smallest detail. However, it’s crucial that you seek the right help and support in order to help make this a reality. So, we wanted to talk to you about putting the devil in the details.Choose a funeral director you can trust
Planning ahead can offer you a number of positives and you should take this option into consideration as it could prove beneficial for your family. With funeral costs on the rise, increasing by 112% over the last 13 years, funeral poverty is an issue that is currently affecting communities across the country. By choosing a pre-paid plan, this will ensure that your family won’t have to face financial difficulties, and Coles offers the option to pay for this on finance, helping you to spread the cost. Also, this gives you the opportunity to personalise it to the smallest details. For example, when you plan your wedding, you pick the perfect party planner and/or start planning months ahead, sometimes even years and why is that? Because you want everything to be perfect, you want to remember that moment for the rest of your life and you want everything to reflect who you are. So why wouldn’t you do the same with your funeral? Choosing your funeral director is the first and most important step to take. You want to opt for someone that you know will support you and help you to make the right decisions for what will likely be an overwhelming day for your loved ones. Talk through the details with them and they can help to ensure that your funeral will leave a positive memory for all.
Showcase your personality
Picking a special location or a meaningful song, asking your friends to share photographs or mementos, are all examples of how you can add a personal touch to your funeral, allowing your family to remember you fondly. We believe that every detail counts, and even the smallest addition can bring a ray of light, and maybe even put a smile on someone’s face. If you have hobbies or particular passions that have filled your life, you could ask the attendees to wear a particular outfit or your favourite colour. It might not seem like something that will have a big impact but by asking them to wear something specific tailored to you can help your family and friends to feel closer to you while they say their goodbyes. Look at Aretha Franklin’s celebrations during her funeral. For her day, the roads leading to the Greater Grace Temple were flooded with a beautiful shade of pink from the thousands of Cadillacs lined up in honour of her song “Freeway of Love” and to reflect the artist’s life.
Consider the service
The most overwhelming and often important part of any funeral is the eulogy. Did you know that you can plan this as well? Make this moment unique and unforgettable. Ask your friends and family to prepare a personal, and maybe humorous, speech about you and your shared memories – you could even take inspiration from the movie, the Fault in Our Stars. After all, bringing your personality to the day is what it’s all about if you truly want to bring a personal experience to the day for your loved ones. Take for example famous actress Lynda Bellingham. Her last dying wish was to bring a smile on her friends’ faces and before passing away, she asked if she could have a joyous funeral, to match her bright and cheerful personality. In honour of her wish, her friends turned her funeral into an “all-signing, all-dancing knees-up” event to celebrate her.
Preparing for your death can be a scary prospect and planning a funeral is often one of those life events that many of us choose not to think about, leaving the responsibility to our loved ones. But by planning ahead, you can make sure that the occasion will reflect your life, opting for a celebration of life to help your loved ones say goodbye. We would never want to see our family and friends suffer so why not give them one last parting gift and plan a heartfelt occasion? Celebrities have started to take this approach and we love their creative, bold decisions. If you’re thinking of planning ahead and would like to talk to us, get in touch with our team and we will always welcome you and your grieving family with open arms – we’re here to support you every step of the way. No detail is too small.