Death, dying and funerals are a big part of Legacy Planning. Our mission at Strategic Hourglass Solutions is to educate others on the importance of starting conversations about not only dying, but also moving, downsizing and disability. Moving can mean different things to different people. Maybe it’s a move to a warmer climate after retiring, or a single story home to accommodate a now required walker or wheelchair. A move could also involve downsizing because with the kids grown and …
living many miles away, one no longer needs the large house and all the ‘stuff’.
At some point all of us will literally run out of time, so having your funeral arrangements documented is just one of the many ways to preserve your legacy. A couple of weeks ago, a friend and I had this very conversation and I told her about how my book, Lifetime Legacy Planner, is a great tool for documenting your wishes so they are carried out with love and respect. She then shared the humorous story about her grandmother’s funeral. The passing of her grandmother was not a total surprise due to her age and health. The service, with its shining casket, lovely flowers and eloquent funeral eulogy, was beautiful. It wasn’t until weeks later with the reading of her grandmother’s will did the family discover she had wanted to be cremated. After a quick calculation of the unnecessary funeral expenses due to the casket and the preparation of the body, my friend laughingly commented: “Who knew? Obviously, no one!” If someone had the conversation with her grandmother about death, dying and funerals beforehand, they would have known.
Documenting your wishes is one way of preserving your legacy. Do you know where you’d want to live if you could no longer stay in your home? Do you have pictures or antiques or jewelry you’d want given to a certain relative or friend or organization? Do you want to be buried or cremated or your body donated to science? Have you ever talked with your family or loved ones about death, dying and funerals? So many questions to consider, but starting those conversations is one of the most loving and generous things you can do for your family and friends. What are you waiting for?