There are two days every year when I write about my mother, on her birthday and wedding anniversary, and on the day that she died. So many things have happened since she left. I often think that I need to call her only to remember that I cannot do that right now. Such is life after death.
Before my mother died, my family had very few conversations about her last wishes. I ended up writing her obituary because I like to write and it felt like the thing to do. We planned a memorial service instead of a funeral because that also seemed like what she might have wanted. What about her belongings? What about the who to invite and what we should say?
I knew that she did not want an open casket and that she wanted her ashes to be sprinkled into a body of water because of a conversation that I had with my mother years prior to her cancer diagnosis. She once told me that I could speak with her from anywhere I wanted…no need to find a tombstone. This is often an important piece of info that I hold onto. Still, with such little conversation accomplished ahead of time, when my mother died, my dad and I were bombarded with a million things to figure out and plan…and often without the informed voice of the person who mattered most, my mom.
Tomorrow we will introduce you to a great organization that is helping to alleviate this lack of end of life planning. While I am happy with how we said goodbye to my mother, I still think often of the many conversations that I wish we had had together.