When I die I want to be buried.
I don’t expect anyone to visit my grave. I don’t want my family and friends to feel obligated to come to any cemetery or to plant my favorite flowers (sunflowers) in my memory. I want to be buried because I feel like it’s the right decision for me. To be laid to rest in the earth, maybe under a tree or near some water. But I don’t have all of the details ironed out yet.
I play this game with my husband, sometimes. When passing by a cemetery, I’ll ask him if he’d like to be buried there. He never gives me a straight answer. Honestly, I’m not even sure if he’d want to be buried or cremated. He’ll normally just slide in a sarcastic comment about how he’s not done living yet. Well, neither am I, but I’d like to be prepared.
This weekend we were driving to his cousin’s wedding when we passed by a particularly small but charming cemetery that I’d describe as, well, in the middle of nowhere. Don’t get me wrong, there were plenty of cornfields all around, but it was located on a road that didn’t house much else. I asked him what he thought about this particular resting place when he once again sidetracked my question. He did, however, reply with, “Well, you know we’re not really going to be there!”
“I know”, I barked back at him, “but this is our final resting place for our mortal bodies!”
He looked at me in a way that only he can, being married to a funeral director after all, hearing the odd remarks that escape from my mouth day after day. And then, we both started to laugh. “You know, when you put it that way” he said, “it makes me think about it a little differently.”
Isn’t that my job, though? To try to make people see things a little differently? I’ve learned that in life, there is not always a right way to do things. Goodness, this even holds true when we talk about death. But by sharing our own stories and listening to others and their experiences, we learn new things. And when we learn, we grow. Changing and growing are some of the most beautiful parts of our lives.
Scary, also, yes; but really beautiful.
Five years ago I could have never imagined the woman I would be today. I know that the same will be true for the next five, ten and twenty years. But that uncertainty makes my life so much fun! Where I am is not where I will always be.
Unless we’re talking about my mortal body buried in a grave in some cemetery. (So yeah, Josiah, we’ve still got some decisions to make.) But until then, I’ll keep playing my little cemetery game, until hopefully, I find a place that I wouldn’t mind decomposing in. It’s a decision that has proven to be much more difficult for me than I would think, but we’ll get there. I’m not in any sort of hurry.