The Last Gift: Planning Your Own Funeral Is A Loving Gift To Your Family

Posted on: 9 May 2016

In the busyness of daily life, thinking about planning your departure from this world may be the last thing on your mind. However, planning your own funeral is wise. Not only will it make it easier on your family at the time of your death, it's the only way to make sure your last wishes are granted.

Give your family peace of mind

Even in close families, loved ones often neglect to discuss their last wishes and what type of services they want when they die. This is especially true among young people who think they have plenty of time to make plans later.

It can be incredibly difficult for grieving family members to think clearly when a loved one dies. Not knowing what their departed loved one truly wanted can lead to more discouragement. Family members may be consumed with guilt while hoping they made the right decisions. One family member may think you want one type of funeral and another may be certain you would prefer something totally different.

Even if you do discuss your plans with your loved ones, over time they may forget. You may also decide at a later time that you would rather have a different type of service and forget to share your plans with your family. Having it planned and documented is the only way to avoid confusion.

Start the planning process

You should meet with your local funeral home to discuss options for pre-planning your services. Some funeral homes have websites where you can plan online. Discuss costs and whether or not you need to pay up front when you pre-plan your services or if you can arrange for your life insurance policy to pay for the services at the time of your death.

The first thing you will need to decide is whether you want a traditional burial or if you wish to be cremated. If you are unsure, discuss the cost and options with the funeral director. You may also want to consult with your pastor if you have concerns about the religious aspect of cremation versus traditional burial.

If you want traditional burial, do you want a full service with a viewing and funeral or just a graveside service? You will want to select your casket and decide who you want to officiate at your services. You can also select what music you want played and the structure of your service.

If you choose cremation services, you will need to determine if you will want your ashes buried or given to your family members. You can still have a memorial-style funeral service with visitation if desired. You will still need to choose an officiant, music, and the structure of the service.

Some people opt for no funeral or services. They simply want their loved ones to remember them as they were. However, even if you chose no services, you will still need to make it clear whether you want to be buried or cremated.

Let your family know you have pre-planned your services. If possible, give them a copy of your arrangements or let them know where they can locate them when they are needed.

Funeral planning isn't often a priority in the busyness of life. However, taking a few hours to plan your services is a gift of love you give to your loved ones when your life is over. You will have peace of mind knowing your wishes will be granted, and your family will be able to grieve without the added stress of planning your services. For more information, contact a professional like those found at Care Memorial Cremation Solutions.