As I’ve gotten older(62) I’ve been thinking a lot about the prospect of my own death. A lot of people either can’t/won’t even discuss the subject, it’s one of life’s many taboos. I, on the other hand, have no problem talking about something that is going to happen to every single one of us, no exceptions. Why are people so put off by the subject?
There are 2 certainties in life, DEATH and TAXES. It seems to me that one reason people don’t want to talk about it is because they’re afraid talking about it means it’s going to happen sooner rather than later. Or maybe talking about it means that you want to die sooner rather than later.
In 2010 our mom died( I had 3 sisters) and we had to handle her funeral arrangements and clean out her house and sell it. At first, it all seemed kind of surreal having to go to the cemetery and pick out her burial plot and then going back to the mortuary to pick out her casket/coffin all in a span of 2 hours. It was really weird, and it really sucked.
After all of that, I decided to not put my wife/kids in that kind of situation. Losing a family member is hard enough, they don’t need any of that extra baggage, so while we were at the cemetery I asked the funeral director a couple of questions. My sisters thought I was nuts for asking, but I asked him if you had to buy the " BOX" from them, or could you build your own? He said there are no requirements that you have to buy one of their insanely over priced coffins from them, you can supply your own, done. I was also able to reserve a spot next to my mom as my final resting place, done.
So 3 years ago, I asked our daughter and son-in-law if it would be alright if I built my own coffin in their huge shop. We don’t own our own home anymore, so I needed a place to build it. They thought it was a very strange question to ask, but when I told them why I was doing it, they wanted to think about it. After a few days they said it would be okay, as long as their then 1 year old son didn’t know what was going on.
So over the course of the next 3 or so weeks, I went to p/u the materials I needed and drove to their house and proceeded to design and build my own casket. I brought all of my own tools and everything else I needed to do the job. When it was finished, we stored it in the crawl-space under their house, it’s huge with 6’ ceilings. We placed it on some 4x4s and covered it with a bedspread. It sat there until they decided to sell their home and move to a warmer climate than what we have here in N.W. WASH. state. That was in FEB., they’re still undecided about where to live, and I have my casket standing on end in our small garage.
Long story short(too late) I do not fear death, it just means the end of my existence on this planet. In some ways I’m looking forward to it because it means no more pain. Are you afraid of dying, is it a subject you can talk about freely, or is it off limits?
P.S. I went out of my way to make my casket one of a kind, it’s black w/orange accents, definitely made just for me. If anyone wants to see it, I can post some photos of it in the future.