Don't Eulogize Me


 Nothing changes in death. Rarely are relationships mended, habits formed, or even fixed on the deathbed. The truth, both severe and somewhat comforting, is that we will die exactly as we have lived.

This is the most poignant sentiment I took from reading "The Beauty Of What Remains." I have never really feared death nor have I been fond of it. In fact, I have cried at the funeral services of persons I have never met. As for my own death, I have never really given it much thought. At 27 years of age, I am equipped with a life insurance policy and the sole wish to be cremated and my ashes scattered somewhere although the location remains unknown.

My grandmother, although nowhere near death's door, is "ready for the Lord" whenever he'll have her. My mother, probably jokingly, has remarked wanting to become a sugar cane plant. And my fiance wants to be cremated and memorialized. Each seems to know exactly what they want when the time comes, but at 27 years of age, the details for me are still fuzzy.

I found Rabbi Leder's thoughts on death being an extension of the life once lived, comforting because just as I have opted out of my own birthday parties, and just as I would prefer an elopement to a grand wedding, I do not wish to be eulogized. I do not want a formal gathering of any sort, be it to mourn my death or celebrate my life. Instead, I would prefer to live a full life. I would prefer to etch remarkable memories into the souls of those I'll leave behind. I would much rather any well-wishes or quarrels be made to ears that hear and most of all, I would like my flowers while I can still smell them.

At 27 years of age, although I am only equipped with a life insurance policy, the wish to be cremated, and fuzzy details, I am certain that I want to die exactly as I have lived and to live to the fullest extent of the word.



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