No, not one of my children (although Pickle did for a short while there at the age of 5), but me!
I am very obsessed with death but not in a bad way. Not in a way that I’m depressed about ageing or the way I will die. In the way that I can learn a lot about how to live my life by learning how other people die well.
I follow quite a few palliative care doctors on twitter. I’m genuinely fascinated by what they do and warmed by their dedication for the UK to review the way we treat dying patients and create “Good deaths”.
I also appreciate my life. We are here but a short time so I don’t hang on to stale friendships, moan a lot about how unhappy I am in a particular situation, spend ages being jealous of other’s lives. I care about my own life and my family whilst still having an open heart to be sympathetic to those I don’t know, to listen, to care, to get annoyed at injustice.
So I read a lot of books that deal with death and watch programmes (Billy Connolly’s recent series and the current one on BBC4 called “My Last Summer”). It can be distressing and raw but I don’t find it morbid. There is one thing certain in life and that’s death. I’d rather face it head on and use it to better my living than bury my head in the sand and never prepare for it.
So I’m thinking of starting a Pinterest board and providing my family with the link. I’m going to pin all the things I want to have happen at my funeral. You know they are going to be far too busy wailing and being distressed to get it just right.
Whilst I’m am an atheist and think it’s highly unlikely I’ll see my own funeral, they can know that they got it just right and that will provide a massive amount of comfort to them. I know it will.
I’m still haunted by the fact my dad insisted that a song from a Pan Pipes album was played at my mum’s funeral. I was sure she didn’t even like the bloody album, but he claimed she did. My sister and I chose a modern song about Blue Sky. It was lovely, but not sure she would have wanted it? We bought the cheapest casket because we thought she’d be annoyed if we spent too much money on it. As all her money is now with my dad and his new wife, perhaps she would have wanted a splurge. I have no bloody idea. Thankfully my sister chose her favourite flowers.
So is a Pinterest board for your own funeral a step too far?