Turning Pain Into Laughter Since 2011
If funerals are supposed to be a celebration of life, why are they always so sad? Yes, I know that someone has lost their loved one and that is a horrible experience to go through, but if we are celebrating that person’s life shouldn’t there be some actual celebration going on? I know some of y’all are probably thinking that I’m being insensitive right now and that is not my intention. I know what it feels like to lose a loved one and it was hardly a time that I felt like celebrating. But for those of yo who believe in heaven and hell, and you also believe your loved has descended into heaven and not the latter, shouldn’t you be celebrating this person’s life all the more? Well, after years of attending the funerals of family members and friends, I have decided that I want my funeral to be a true reflection and celebration of what my life was and what I represented during my time here on earth. I have put together a list of do’s and don’ts for a select few of my friends, of which they are to pass on to my mother if I precede her in death (I couldn’t send my mother into shock by giving her my funeral plans).
Play upbeat music at my ‘Life Celebration’…I want happy music that makes people want to dance and smile. If that means my ‘Life Celebration’ won’t be held at a church, then so be it (I don’t go to church anyway so that solves that problem).
Dress comfortably and wear bright colors…I love bright colors, especially on my Black people. We [Blacks] come in an array of shades and I want there to be an array of bright colors at my ‘Life Celebration’. And y’all better not put my face on a t-shirt or have my name put on the back of your car or truck window. Not knocking anyone that wants to honor their loved ones in that way, I just don’t wish to be memorialized in that way.
Remember all the times I made you laugh…I love to have fun and I love to laugh. In most dark situations, I try my best to find the humor, to try to lighten the mood. I also tend to laugh at things others probably wouldn’t laugh at (don’t judge, I usually keep those laugh moments to myself). If my friends are down or having a bad day, I feel it is my duty to make them smile or laugh at least once. And if you know me well you know that I don’t have much of a filter so I’m likely to say the first thing that pops in my head (my friend Sierra hates to have me on speaker phone or connected to the Bluetooth in her car, LOL). So whenever you get sad just think about some of the stupid, crazy things I’ve said or done and have a good chuckle at my expense.
At no time are my family and friends allowed to use the word funeral…In any announcements, phone calls, discussions and the event program, it will be referred to as ‘Life Celebration’. The word funeral sounds so sad.
If we weren’t cool or we use to be cool and you cut me off for whatever reason, don’t feel bad and come to my funeral…Listen, I am a firm believer in giving people their flowers while they are alive and treating people how I want to be treated. It is no secret that I love hard and truly cherish my friends. The people that I currently call my friends have been in my life for a long time and it is my mission in life to hold on to them. I have been fortunate enough to attach myself to some good people who have helped me when I was at my lowest and helped me grow in life. Those are the people I want to celebrate my life. If you gave me flowers and then took them away, I do not need them back once I’m dead. Just stay away.
If you can’t find anyone who can actually hold a note, don’t have any live singers at my Life Celebration…I’m sorry but I’ve been to too many funerals where the choir and the soloist SUCKED! What better way to disrespect the deceased by having horrible musicians and singers performing old Negro spirituals, making what’s already a somber event even more somber. If they can’t blow like Monica and Luther, just have someone pull up Pandora or Tidal or go old school and make a CD of songs to be played. As a matter of fact, I’ll make my own playlist because I want to be entertained as well. And if I forget to make a playlist before I leave, I’m putting my friend Tyone in charge of that. Out of my small circle he has the best taste in music, so I trust that he won’t let me down. Live musicians is NOT a necessity for me.
DO NOT have a crying, falling out episode in front of my family…I know that my family and friends will be sad to let me go, but what I don’t want is someone having a crying spell and making my mom, or anyone else, more upset than she already is. If you feel the need to shed some tears and you actually feel like you may sob loudly, please excuse yourself and step outside. You can come back in once you get yourself together. Oh and I will make sure that there are ushers in place to keep order should such an incident occur.
Do not spend my insurance money on a casket…I want to be cremated and stored on someone’s mantle. Hopefully I’ll be married with children before I die and I can live with one of my kids if my husband has dipped out before me.
In all seriousness, I want to make my transition as easy as possible for my family and friends. I don’t want them to have to pick out my casket or worry about how they are going to pay for my funeral. I do not want everyone to gather at a grave site and watch me lowered into the ground. Honestly that is always the hardest part about a funeral for me. When my grandmothers passed away, it tore me up inside to watch them be lowered into the ground and we just turned away and went back to regular lives. It was like we were leaving them all alone, out in the cold. I am very serious about how I want my funeral to go. I want y’all to celebrate the life I lived and the impact that I left on this world. And believe me when I say, I plan to be around for a long time and I have set things in motion that will allow me to leave my mark on this planet.
Until next time,