Death is not convenient!

From my book “Living and Dying”

I have so many stories to share regarding living a healthy life because of my experience in the funeral business. Having to wake up every day and enter a world of loss has been a great gift to me. No day is the same and all I have to do is care about people. We should all have such a job!

People often joke how my job is recession proof or not affected by the economy. The saying “the only thing certain is death and taxes” comes to mind. You might be surprised that in the last forty years there have been significant and consistent changes. Probably one of the biggest differences or changes in the past few years is how important logistics has become. Years ago we did not have such a mobile society. People were born, raised and died in the same communities. Our children today are living, visiting and studying in other countries. We have families living apart while spouses travel to distant cities for work and then return on weekends for family time. Commerce is conducted on the internet—Skype and web casting are the new norms, to name just a few.

One interesting story where scheduling and logistics comes to mind is the death of one woman’s husband. In the arrangement process when it came time to schedule the funeral, I was told we needed to wait five weeks for the service as she was scheduled to leave for a cruise. Although this story is a rare occurrence, there are more and more families trying to work around scheduled plans and events. Most important to remember is “death is not convenient” and we need to accept the fact that sometimes we must be willing to change our plans to accommodate it. Being one of life’s most significant events you might think we would take notice and stop the world for a few days or weeks.

“Blessings on your journey”


Our biggest fear

Don Miguel Ruiz wrote, “Death is not the biggest fear we have; our biggest fear is taking the risk to be alive — the risk to be alive and express what we really are.”

Being fearful of the future takes an enormous amount of energy and drains the creativity and motivation from life. So, just for today, do your best to be less fearful. And, as you set your sights on the coming year, plan to do one small thing every day to express your own uniqueness.

“Blessings on your journey”


From my book “Living and Dying”

The energy associated with emotion is very strong and one that can be very difficult to embrace. It will cause us to move out of our comfort zone, and it will challenge us to what feels like a breaking point. It will feel large, in charge, and scary at times, but it has its purpose. It is there to move us toward something new. It is there to make us choose. It is there for our own good, to shock us out of our old patterns. It is there to be embraced and it will move us towards love. The dilemma in all of this is that we have a choice.

In the many years I devoted to limiting emotion in my life, I was in a constant war with myself. In my new experience of embracing and choosing emotion (e=motion) I have blossomed to do many new things and have grown in many ways. It has been challenging, and I do fall off course. But if I were to have to do it over again, I would choose the course of energy and motion.

I have always loved the quote “When in life have you learned the most, when everything was easy or when you were most challenged?” In my experience, all of my major growth has taken place in change and movement from one place to another. Perhaps that is why I chose funeral service. Is there any other experience that challenges us to move from one place to another that is more profound? I think not.

”Blessings on your journey”

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Be a true representative of the goodness in your heart, and don’t expect it to be easy or even noticed.

Sometimes, I’ve noticed that when I’m being good, living as love, and representing God’s graciousness, that I expect life to shower me with blessings.  Sometimes, I’ve noticed I’m looking for results and to have people acknowledge my awesomeness!!  Sometimes, I’ve noticed I’m disappointed for those very reasons.  Being human’s a bitch sometimes! 🙂

”Blessings on your journey”

Pushing through

I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil –

J.R.R. Tolkien

Its been two weeks since our friend Colleen’s passing.  During this time I have had moments that have brought me tears.  Some moments stronger and longer than others, but moments.  I also have had moments of great comfort and revelation!  Here is a poem that speaks to the experience we might have with death.


Pushing Through
~ Rainer Maria Rilke

It’s possible I am pushing through solid rock
in flintlike layers, as the ore lies, alone;
I am such a long way in I see no way through,
and no space: everything is close to my face,
and everything close to my face is stone.

 I don’t have much knowledge yet in grief
so this massive darkness makes me small.

You be the master: make yourself fierce, break in:
then your great transforming will happen to me,
and my great grief cry will happen to you.[1] 

In those last three lines, the author offered himself and his desperate grief to the Higher: “You be the master: make yourself fierce, break in.” The last two lines says to me, “Divine being, transform me and allow my great grief cry to transform something larger than myself.”  It takes me to a place of deep contemplation about life and afterlife, a place of faith and wonder.  It takes me to a place of comfort and peace, a place within me I might have temporarily forgot existed.

Rilke’s poem helps us endure the fierce darkness that descends after any major loss or heart-break. He suggests, and gives us words to offer our sorrow to something larger than ourselves. He helps us surrender and be transformed.  He, like I, give testimony that someone has been there and survived and someone has found beauty and gratitude in our human condition.

‘Blessings on your journey”

The Universe

From my friends at TUT

Ever have that feeling, that your life, your true work, has not yet begun?
Ever feel like you’re here for something more than you’ve yet identified? And that a billion eyes are upon you, just waiting for the prophecy to unfold?
And, have you also ever wanted something so badly that all your wishing, hoping, and praying kept you from seeing that you had it all along?
   The Universe



From my friends at TUT:
Okay! So, finally, I think you’re ready to learn the real reason time and space was invented………………………..dancing.
That and somersaults. You know, for when you were even younger.
And skipping. And humming. And playing make-believe…
Okay, okay, okay… the real, real reason, ………………..was you.
It’s true.
Just didn’t want to hit you with that in the first breath and have you spill something.
“Blessings on your journey”