Nobody likes talking about death, much less the death of a loved one or your own death.
This is why pre-planning funeral services in Pittsburgh can be a little intimidating and can involve having some difficult conversations with loved ones.
But pre-planning a funeral can be beneficial for both the deceased, who can be better represented at their funeral service, as well as their friends and family, who can honor the deceased and their unique personality.
Leaving your survivors with clear instructions regarding your final wishes can ensure that you’re honored in a way that truly embodies you, your values, and your style so that your loved ones can appreciate your life authentically when you’re gone.
1. Talk it over with your family or loved ones
While this may be a difficult conversation to have, it’s essential that you speak about it with your immediate family or close friends.
These plans shouldn’t be a dictation to your survivors, but rather a conversation about how you’d like to be represented.
It’s important that you go over why you’re making certain decisions about the funeral service so that they can understand your thought process.
This way, if certain things can’t be pulled off for whatever reason, they’ll be able to find a suitable alternative that aligns with your wishes.
Having this open conversation can even help them add in suggestions and alleviate their confusion or any emotions they may have over your decision.
2. Find suitable funeral services in Pittsburgh
The first thing you should do is research the available funeral services in Pittsburgh and then select the right funeral home based on whether they can accommodate all your needs, as they’ll be in charge of making sure that your various wishes can be met.
Ensuring that the funeral home is based in Pittsburgh is especially important if you’re located in Pittsburgh, as you’ll want one that can handle your transportation needs.
It can also make any funeral planning much easier as it’s more accessible.
The right funeral home will be able to customize its services according to your needs and budget.
3. Make the experience personal
Pre-planning funeral services can help the ceremony feel more personalized to your wishes and your life so that the people attending will truly be able to remember your authentic self.
Having a funeral service with the standard readings or hymns won’t really remind your guests of you.
This means that everything from the viewing or visitation to the funeral service or the memorial service should have features that are personal to you, and with pre-planning, this is easier than ever to achieve.
Whether it’s a certain hymn that you like, a certain reading that resonates with you, or a song that you enjoy—add these in to give your service a personal touch.
You can even add in pictures that you like, videos you’d like to be played, or anything else that feels right.
4. Determine how you want to be laid to rest
There are a number of ways in which you can be laid to rest. The most common options these days are the traditional burial or cremation.
There are other options as well, such as a green burial or donating your body to science.
If burial is your preference, you’ll have to decide on other things, such as whether you want your body to be embalmed, what casket you’d like, etc. Then you’ll have to decide which cemetery will be suitable and also whether you’d like to be buried in the ground or entombed in a mausoleum.
If you’re leaning towards cremation, you can decide whether you’d like it to take place before the service or after the funeral, so the body will be available for viewing at the service.
You should also think about what you’d like your survivors to do with your ashes. They can be scattered in a place that is meaningful to you, buried in a regular cemetery plot, or kept in an urn of your choice.
A green burial will focus on making the ceremony as environmentally friendly as possible.
If you wish to donate your body for scientific research, you’ll need to look into medical schools and research facilities, to determine the best option for you. Only certain facilities accept anatomical donations and they may have criteria you must meet, so it’s important that this is done in advance.
5. Decide whether you want to support a charity
While sending flowers is a time-honored tradition, you can request charitable donations in lieu of flowers.
Deciding to establish a memorial fund can be another great way of continuing to support your favorite organizations even after you’re gone.
A funeral home can help you set up this fund so that guests can help support a cause or charity that is close to your heart.
Pre-planning funeral services in Pittsburgh can help ease the burden on your family
Pre-planning can help ensure that you’ll have a funeral service that is entirely personal to you.
Not only does this help honor you, but it also helps friends and family remember you in a way that is representative of your personality and ideals.