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After I’m Gone

I am not afraid of death (read my two blog posts about this here and here). I hope it doesn’t happen in the next 24 hours, but if it does, I will not mourn the things I was not able to see, do, experience; I will celebrate all those experiences I was blessed enough to enjoy.

I have set up an account at MyWonderfulLife.com and my “angels” will be able to access my full wishes there, but here are a few of the ways I want to be remembered and mourned. Of course, I’d love it if no one cried that I was gone and instead laughed at memories of all the moments we spent together, but I understand that losing someone leaves a hole in your heart that is only soothed by tears.

Funeral… or Something

I do not actually want a funeral. Instead, I want an outdoor get-together with some loose structure. Mostly, I just want the people who miss me when I’m gone to gather in a beautiful place that I love, Sequiota Park, eat some food, drink some Hefeweizen (my favorite celebratory beverage), and reminisce.

I want the Life of Brian song, “Always Look On the Bright Side” to play at some point, and my cousin Karis has volunteered to sing it–with the accent! Another song I’d like played and sung is “It Is Well With My Soul,” because that is how I feel about death, and this song has always been a favorite of mine. Finally, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow“: the music exudes hope and yearning, and I am absolutely in love with this tune, but if someone plays that Hawaiian version, I shall haunt them the rest of their days; Judy Garland is the one I want singing of lemon drops and chimney tops at my passing.

Other Songs I’d Like

  • “Golden Slumbers” by the Beatles
  • “You’ll Never Walk Alone” by Gerry & The Pacemakers

Disposition of My Remains

I want as much of me to be donated as possible, and specifically, I’d like my brain donated to Alzheimer’s disease research. But I want people to have a place to go to remember me, and I would love that place to be a bench along the Galloway Trail or at Cruse Dog Park.

Flowers and Donations

I love flowers, but I’d much rather people give donations to the Alzheimer’s Association, Ozarks Greenways, and The Republic Paw Pantry in my name.

Quotes and Lyrics

Play Jolly Music At My Funeral – Richard Greene
I’ve taken in recent years to thinking about my funeral and have decided to make one paramount request: play jolly music at that ritual.
What good does it do to heap on dirges or other mournful melodies?
I won’t be there to be gratified by the grieving and if I could tune in I’d be happier to see those present have some relief.
Dixieland would be nice.
Joplin would be fine.
Something by Fats Waller would certainly do.
Those early jazzmen knew what they were up to when they set about making funeral marches swing.
So swing me away, please, with a rousing tune.

I’ve Had The Time Of My Life – Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes
Now I’ve had the time of my life
No I never felt like this before
Yes I swear it’s the truth
And I owe it all to you
‘Cause I’ve had the time of my life
And I owe it all to you

George Bernard Shaw
Life does not cease to be funny when people
die any more than it ceases to be serious
when people laugh.

Helen Keller
What we have once enjoyed we can never lose;
All that we love deeply, becomes a part of us.

Walt Whitman
I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love,
If you want me again look for me under your boot-soles.

Mark Twain
Life is short, Break the Rules.
Forgive quickly, Kiss SLOWLY.
Love truly. Laugh uncontrollably
And never regret ANYTHING
That makes you smile.

Oscar Wilde, The Canterville Ghost
Death must be so beautiful. To lie in the soft brown earth, with the grasses waving above one’s head, and listen to silence. To have no yesterday, and no tomorrow. To forget time, to forgive life, to be at peace.

Dr. Seuss
Remember me and smile, for it’s better to forget than to remember me and cry.

Mark Twain
The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.

Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
After all, to the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.