So let’s look at the shadow we have concerning death and how we handle the dead. On my radio show I once interviewed a funeral director who was very well-known in his field, and we had an incredible discussion about how we treat those who have died. We both asked, “What is the rush to bury the dead for the funeral or for a memorial after cremation?” Actually, there is no reason why a person who dies on Sunday has to be buried by Wednesday. We still are driven by an era in which we had to bury the dead quickly because their bodies would begin to smell.
Here we are in the twenty-first century, rushing this process without properly going through the emotions and allowing people time to decide what is best. Usually we are so focused on all the details that we do not have time to sit and feel anything. We rush as if we were in a race to get it done, to get all the details and the planning complete. It usually takes people a lot longer to accept what has occurred because of the lack of ritual, which would have helped with the death of a loved one (whether an animal or a person).
Please take the time to plan out your service. When my father died unexpectedly, we were very rushed to have him buried within a couple of days and to put the experience “behind” us. I was very heartsick, for the loss was deeper than I ever imagined. My heart felt as if it were cracking open. It hurt physically, a true heartache. For the first time, I truly understood sad songs about a broken heart. I got it—when you are experiencing it, it is truly real and painful.