My funeral.

Tomorrow is my last hospice training session. One of our homework assignments was to plan our own funeral. It's beneficial to us to think about what we would like because eventually we are all going to die. Plus, every patient we deal with is thinking about their funeral, so it helps for us to try and put ourselves in their shoes. I understand why some people would have a hard time with it, but I enjoyed thinking about what I would want. Probably because death is not the end and it is not something to be feared for me.

So I spent today thinking about what I would like. I have been to about five funerals in my life. Every one of them was in a church with a casket at the front. Two of them had open caskets, which gave me many nightmares as a kid. I wouldn't necessarily consider myself "outdoorsy" but I definitely would not want to have a funeral in a church, or in any building for that matter. I decided I want my funeral outside. Possibly at the beach or at a good hiking spot. I just know I want it outdoors with a nice breeze blowing. When I am outdoors, on a mountain or at the beach and the wind is blowing, I feel close to God.

I don't want it to be a big thing. If people can come, that's great. If not, it's okay. I'm not there anyways. I don't want people to wear black. I love colors, and I want people to enjoy the rainbow. Wear bright yellow! Blue! Green! It's not a sad affair. Yes, I am gone from this world, but I'm in a better place. The best place. I want pictures too.

This is my favorite picture of me:

Tim took it in the summer of '09. It makes me happy because I feel like it really captures who I am. The expression on my face, the way I wear my hair, the necklace I love. It's me. I want there to be a bulletin board at my funeral. And I want everyone who comes to bring their favorite picture of me. I want them to put it on the bulletin board. These pictures will display who I am, not the fact that I am dead. And, since for my assignment I have to plan my funeral as if it were tomorrow, I would like the bulletin board to go home with my parents. I can't imagine the loss of a child, and even though they would be rejoicing that I gave my life to Christ and I am in heaven, they would be so upset. I want them to have this bulletin board to remember the person I was, the things I loved, the activities I did.

I want to be cremated. I have no interest in being buried in the ground. Some people want that, and I respect that, but it's not for me. I am not there. I don't want people feeling like they can go to a certain place and I am listening to them. It's not true. Instead I want them to think of me when they go to the beach or when they go on a hike or when they feel the breeze in their hair. I don't want my family keeping my ashes though. Throw them over the water, into the wind, I don't really care about that part. I just don't think it would be good for them to keep them.

I want my sisters to talk. They know me better than anyone. I want them to make jokes about me. Tell my friends how much I have changed and how much they hated me in the beginning. I want people to laugh at me, because I won't be there to laugh with them. I want so much laughter. No sadness.

Afterwards, I want people to have a picnic. If they want, tell stories about me. Or just run around, play baseball, go rollerskating. I just don't want people to go home and be sad by themselves. If they need to cry, cry. But do it in a group, get through it together.

I hope I don't die for a long time, but if I do, show my parents this. It's what I want.


Katie Bush said...

This warms and breaks my heart all at the same time. I hope you don't die tomorrow either...mostly because you rock and I love you but secondly because you haven't made it to Italy yet <3