The role of the Funeral Director is a challenging one.
The immediate objective is to solicit vital information and progress decision making, so that the recently dead, can be respectfully interned. Simple…
Enter the grieving loved one.
While some would prefer the ‘red dog’ lead, a bbq and a Milo can, or be laid under the citrus tree out the back, this isn’t likely.
There are formalities.
After those are done with, there is the writing and speaking of words. There are three writing pieces, the death notice, the eulogy and if the departed lived a ‘life of note’, you may have to either provide dot points or like I did, write the obituary yourself.
If you have no residual feelings about the not-so-dearly departed then this part is easy. You can sprout facts and round it off with a platitude, a quote or a track of music. Screw on the lid or drop the casket, and skip off to the pub for some liquid consolation.
On that note, it is only recommended to have two tracks, and if you are choosing a hymn for others to sing, then provide the words, as this ritual is dying along with the congregations of religious followers. I am seriously going to have to review my list, as I have a concert planned.
Ironically, many people take the opportunity to talk about themselves as a form of eulogy, and not the deceased. This is not recommended. You’ll have your day.
I decided to inject humour into mine and told a story for some of the coloured glass in the kaleidoscope that was my father, Reginald Trebilco. I was funny and he would have liked that. I mimicked his voice and unique delivery style.
My father, a self-confessed ‘deaf post’ had a love of clocks. There were always chiming clocks of various tonal notations going off. He liked to rescue them and restore them. He had quite a collection.
I once stayed at my father’s small one bedroom unit while he was in hospital. Every night, boom, boom, boom. On the quarter, half and hour. I moved them and put them in cupboards, under blankets and even put one in a biscuit tin. This was to no avail.
After six days I was in a desperate state. He noted the bags under my eyes, saying ‘ You know, you really should get more sleep’. I told him about the clocks. ‘Oh you can turn that off, why didn’t you say so? They don’t bother me at all’, he stated as if he was imbued with special powers.
Being deaf will do that for you, I retorted. What’s that, he said…
I discovered that ‘humour’ is uncommon at a funeral. Frankly people aren’t taught that it is acceptable. Why not laugh at the wonderful quirkiness and uniqueness of that person?
Why not recount tales that demonstrate their humanity, fragility and individuality?
Why not celebrate?
Why not wear colours? If I have an event, I want everyone to wear colour. The irony of that will not be lost on those that know me, I often wear black.
The obituary can be found at: http://www.examiner.com.au/story/4610100/regs-legacy-everlasting-obituary/