Some people want a remembrance of their loved one’s life today. We expose them to the idea of a life celebration, and offer support in planning a life celebration that is as special as their loved one’s life.
We really enjoy partnering with families to prepare a celebration of their loved one’s life. While bringing together an event that both pays tribute to and honors the life and spirit of a complicated human can be a challenge, it is also one of the most rewarding things any of us can do for those we have loved and lost.
With a very intimate tale about how her family decided to pay tribute to her mother, Sarah York opens her beautifully-crafted novel, Remembering Well. In April 1983, my mother died… She didn’t want a funeral. She had said, ‘Get together and have a picnic,’ when the issue was allowed to come up. She was swift to warn readers, however, that the survivors did not honor the invitation. “The ritual was required. We had to say farewell, but we still wanted a ceremony that would honour her memory and be true to her ideals and values.
As Ms. York accepts her family’s stance that they did not need a party but a tradition, she tells us all something important: the celebration of life experiences we prepare for families can be influenced by their own emotional and spiritual desires as well as their ability to commemorate the life they have experienced.
While life celebrations are not burdened with external standards, they can be almost everything you want them to be, it is vital to remember that the event you prepare can fulfill the guests’ emotional needs. So, think of just who’s going to be there, and what they’re actually going to want or need. Then put in certain unique aspects of the deceased’s lifestyle and personality; maybe add live music or refreshments, and you have the beginnings of a remarkable celebration of life.