Life can end unexpectedly sometimes. Not many people want to think about the end or to plan ahead for it. However, if you don’t make advance directives or make any wishes for your funeral known to your family members, that can put a lot of stress on them in trying to decipher what you might have wanted. If you have been left with the decision of what to do with your loved one's remains, it is okay to consider your preferences along with theirs.

In the end, the person who is lost is in a much better place. Richard Wojcik knows that, for all intents and purposes, funerals are designed more for the living to have a chance to grieve and say goodbye than they are for the person who has left this earth. They might leave their remains, which have to be honored in some way, but what really matters and what people will remember are the memories that they have. So try not to be too hard on yourself when making the final decisions about what to do. If you have the love in your heart and the desire to honor them, then you can’t go wrong.

Funeral homes

If you choose using a funeral home, then a lot of the decisions can be handled by someone else. Sometimes homes can be slightly more expensive than other types of funeral services, but no matter which option you choose, the remains will need to go to the funeral home. If you are unsure about what to do, it is okay to let the funeral director guide you about what is best. They can tailor the service and other details to accommodate your needs. For instance, if a large portion of your family lives out of town, then you might want to consider any options that the funeral director might have to allow people time to get there.

Take care of yourself

When someone dies, the person who is left to make decisions about the funeral often care very little for themselves. Even though it is time to make a plan to let everyone say goodbye, you have to recognize your own limitations and ask for help. It is okay to say when you can’t handle things and to control those things that you can, and let the other decisions that are inconsequential be up to someone else. Not getting the proper amount of sleep, not eating well, and generally not taking care of yourself are not the ways to honor someone who loved you greatly. They would want you to take a deep breath, not stress too much, and just give people a venue to say goodbye.

Don’t go overboard cost-wise and put yourself in a bad financial situation

It is important to honor those you love, but you don’t honor them more by spending more. The last thing that your loved one would want is for you to spend more money than you have on a funeral that isn’t necessary. Remember, the funeral is more about the people who are left behind than it is about the people who left. Don’t bankrupt yourself trying to live up to someone else’s standards. There is no shame in having a funeral within the confines of your budget. You don’t show you love them more if you choose to put yourself in a poor economic situation.

Consider non-traditional options

You don’t have to go the traditional route. If you want to celebrate someone’s life, consider options that are in tune with what they wanted to do when they were living. If they were a beachcomber, then have their ashes scattered at the beach. If they loved mountain-climbing, you can scatter their ashes at a mountaintop.

If your loved one never got to tell you what they wanted for their final goodbye, then it is up to you to make those decisions for them. The biggest thing to remember is that you won’t dishonor them if you love them and do things that will make people think about and celebrate their life. No two people are the same and neither should any two funerals be - just go with your heart and you can’t go wrong.