Cremation and Families Options 

Cremation has been on the rise for many years.  Some families choose cremation because of cost and some because family can not get together to have a service for their loved one right away due to living in another state or country.  Cremation can take place and then the family chooses a time to get together for a service and burial at a later date.

Today there are many different reasons for a family or a individual to choose cremation.  I have heard many people say, “Just cremate me.”  Many times they are thinking it would be easier for their family and not of the grief processing and sense of closure that a service can bring. Sometimes it is a financial factor or a simplicity factor for the family.

The first cremation option for the family is to have a chance to say goodbye if they are not with their loved one when he or she passes. Sometimes families are scattered across the country and there is not enough time after death to say goodbye unless viewing takes place within a 24 hour period. After 24 hours, state law dictates the body will either need to be refrigerated or embalming will have to be done.

Another cremation option is to have a full service first and then cremation. There are caskets specifically designed for cremation and there is also a casket that can be used and the interior of casket is a cremation container that is replaced. It looks like a regular casket and you will not be able to tell that the interior is removable. This may be the best option when a loved one requests cremation but family wants a chance to celebrate their life. After cremation the family can plan a private burial of remains at a later time.  Ashes can be scattered as long as permission has been granted by the land owner. The only regulation is that scattered remains are not permitted in any water source or body of water.  Some families decide to keep the ashes at home, it is all up to the family and what they think will help them through the grief process.  Please read the previous blog I wrote about grief.

When planning for a funeral service (with the body present) or a memorial service (without the body present) it is important to bring in personal items to add to the service and to create a display of pictures.  When having any type of funeral, memorial, or celebration of life service, it is important for a family to discuss ideas of how to personalize the service for their loved one.  If family doesn’t have ideas of what they can do, I hope the funeral director brings up ideas for the family.  Over the years I have done many different things to make a service personalized for the deceased and the family.  It may be to play the deceased’s favorite song, display collectibles, or even have a procession of tractor trailers to the cemetery.  It can be anything that the family feels best represents the life lived when it comes to honoring the one they love.
Not only are there all kinds of options with cremation and personalization but also many different products and merchandise that have been introduced to help families take a step forward in the grief process.

When it comes to urns, it is unimaginable what products for families are out there.  Some families bring in there own form of a urn, tackle box, cookie jar and even a basketball.
Occasionally people I meet with say, “This might be a stupid question.”  Believe me, there is never a stupid question.  Please make sure if you have a question that you ask.  The service you are planning is for you to celebrate a life you loved; it is my job to help you in any way that I can.

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