An avalanche of grief, combined with mountains of difficult decisions to make and details to attend to, was triggered the moment I received a phone call from my brother saying “Mom’s dead” one sunny May morning in 2006.
Planning for the Inevitable
In case you hadn’t heard, Casey Kasem died last week. The news of his death was not, however, a huge surprise.
A family battle over Casey’s end-of-life care, treatment and intentions was the predominant story for several weeks- a feud played out in public and highlighted in various media outlets.
Could this feud have been avoided? A resounding yes!
There will soon be a flood of tears and anguished sobbing in theaters across the nation. “The Fault in Our Stars”, the fourth novel authored by John Green, is hitting the screens of theaters everywhere after its successful launch as a top-selling young adult book.
Have you ever come across any unknown, unmarked keys such as the ones pictured above?
Did you happen to find them in a strange place where you not only wondered what they were doing in that location, but, more importantly, you wondered what did those keys actually open?
It is hard enough keeping track of which keys open what when you are the owner and you are still alive. Now imagine the problems that arise when you die and someone else is left to figure out the puzzle!
Do you keep a diary or journal? Have you been writing in it for decades? Are your diaries hidden in a secret spot or placed out in the open easily visible to others?
Are all of your inner most personal thoughts, feelings, secrets, and descriptive stories of both heartache and accomplishments laid bare inside those hand written pages?
Do you worry about (or have you ever thought about) what happens to your diaries when you die?
I heard a story recently that got my attention. Here’s what I remember about it.
In a nutshell, someone’s mom had died and the daughter “in charge” of picking out an urn for her mother’s ashes was so consumed by grief that she sent her spouse to the funeral home in her place.
Next came the phone call from the spouse to his cousin while in the “shopping area” in the back of the funeral home. He was asking for help in making the selection (by phone) of the “appropriate” urn.
Let’s face it. We live in a sophisticated, technologically driven world whether we like it or not. Like most things in life, that happens to be both good and bad news.
But with technology comes passwords, usernames, and PIN numbers. Not only are we instructed to keep these in a “safe” place, we are challenged with the task, on a daily and sometimes hourly basis, of remembering what password goes with what.
Let’s explore the proverbial question of “what comes first, the chicken or the egg?”
Now let’s compare that story with planning for death.
Do you know that answer to that question? Or do you just have a strong intuition about which comes first?
Now here’s another question to ponder…..
What is your gut reaction to the title of this post?
What do you think about building your own coffin?
Are you sitting there thinking that’s not only crazy, but a bit morbid? Or are you thinking-hey-that’s not such a bad idea…
My gut reaction is why not? Why not plan for death?