Sending love! Help me thank Benjamin once again for this one. While we’re at, please check out his blog. His perspective on life is interesting and I find myself challenged to think every time I spend there.
Some time back my mother retired and she started to be at home with us. A year into her retirement, she got a problem with her womb and the medical experts advised that she got rid of it. She did the preparations secluded from me and my little brother. And in July of 2009, she was ready for the medical procedure. Before she left home we discussed the other aspect of events, what if she didn’t get up from the surgical bed, or what if she got up but soon after died from a complication. It was not the first time the three of us discussed her death. A few years earlier we had talked about it, but then she didn’t say much, it was more of getting ready than anything.
I have lost a few people close to me in the past and the confusion that followed was not something I desired. Here we are three boys and a mother doing a risk assessment not on property, but on an eventuality of a lost life. She gave us instructions on how to handle the burial, explored three modes on how to do it. Talked a bit of wealth and how we would carry on afterward. Who to trust and who not to invite home. The burial guest list and costs for all things if it happened. Her last instruction was for us to keep home, no hospital visits one thing that people have never figured out till today. For 7 days we didn’t visit her in the hospital.
Today she is alive. Since then, we have since reviewed the procedure. This time it is not only her death we have discussed, but even ours. We have all agreed on the options for burial grounds or the mode of burial according to the circumstances of death.
In Africa, you can not discuss your death. In fact, funeral rehearsals are unheard of. I had an uncle who happened to die when he was in Botswana where he was a resident for more than 30 years. It took his family 6 months to raise the cost of returning his body for burial. Something that dented the family finances up to this day. They have been case of disagreeing where someone should be buried. Today land is so prized that burial grounds are sold off and families have to relocate the dead like they still matter.
At what point of your life should one have a will? What are the key and basic things that should be in a will? Are you sure you would want to spend tens of thousands of dollars transporting a dead person from one end of the world to another for a burial when you could have had their ash in an envelop. For those that believe in the Bible, if the sea will give up the dead during rapture why insist on a specific burial ground.
We may hate death because it’s an enemy, but remember the wage for sin is death which sin our bodies are subject to. I only think it’s sensible to have that family discussion about your burial and who should attend and speak. I tell people if I find myself asking for directions for a funeral watch then am most likely not supposed to go in the first place. When we have a new life come into this world a few people who matter get to know about it, death is important more than birth because then you have lived and met new people. Those that matter and were valuable to you should make you funeral guest list to reduce on the costs. Because as you die life continues.