Your loved one has died. Who will help plan the Memorial or Celebration of Life? Every month a grieving family finds me and I can see their panic and then their relief. Panic at not having a clue how to plan such an important event as a Memorial or Celebration of Life for someone they loved with all their heart. Relief to find someone unstuffy, real, and totally on their side, who will help them to do it.
Here is a letter from a recent client. She speaks to that experience of confusion and relief far better than I ever could.
“We are a small family and my father passed away at 60, which left a huge hole in our lives and in our hearts. He had always had health issues but an out-of-the-blue cancer diagnosis followed by three months in hospice was devastating. We were so emotionally and physically wiped after his passing. At first we couldn’t face the prospect of a service but within a few weeks we knew we needed to have one for the friends who supported him and us and for everyone to remember and honour him together. We found a wonderful venue at Mountain View Celebration Hall and started the planning. It became clear that we had no idea how to structure the celebration and we hadn’t a clue where to start. It was beginning to feel overwhelming and we worried that the celebration would fall flat. I had never heard of a celebrant before and we were told of Michele and her services and instantly felt relieved.”
“We felt comfortable with her as soon as we sat across the table from her and we were able to give her the details about my father’s life that she needed to prepare and lead the ceremony for us. She provided emotional support and allowed us to be who we are and guided us on practicalities when we needed it. We felt she totally understood us in our state of grief, and we trusted her to handle such an important event in our lives. She is truly remarkable to be able to work with so many different families with unique personalities and dynamics and yet make you feel that your family is totally normal and that what you’re doing is exactly right. We are grateful to have shared our father’s life with her and to have her share it with those closest to us on our behalf. The ceremony would not have been the same without her. My dad and Michele would have liked each other if they had ever met.”
May these words inspire other families to know that they are not alone. Feel free to call me to discuss crafting a meaningful memorial for someone in your life who has passed away. A memorial often begins the public part of grief… mourning. A ceremony, even a small one, can be a crucial and healing step on your journey through grief.
by Michele Davidson, Master Celebrant & Seeker of Meaning