Today on “Lighten Up” we are touching on another sentimental item: Remains & Ashes. Many people have urns of ashes in their homes, most typically (although not exclusively) those from pets. Having a loved one’s ashes provides a way to feel connected, and often offers a comfort in the time immediately after a death.
Nevertheless, there may come a time when you no longer want to hold onto a loved one’s remains. This is not something to feel guilty about. The ashes themselves do not have feelings, and letting them go does not in any way signify that you no longer care about the one who has died. It may simply be a practical need to discard them.
When it comes to disposing of remains, there are a couple of options:
Ashes can be buried in a special location in a backyard or other personal property. You may also want to bury the remains in a formal cemetery or place of rest. This will incur a charge, but it may be worth it to you to have a place you know you can visit permanently.
One nice option for burial is to use a biodegradable urn. These are ideal for water burials and green cemeteries because they are designed to break down naturally when buried or exposed to water.
Many people choose to spread ashes in a location that was meaningful to the deceased. This can be a beautiful ceremony of remembrance. If you choose to go this route, know that there are some laws governing this process. You can find details for a variety of spreading options via the Neptune Society.
Another option is to have the cremation remains turned into something else. For example, Parting Stoneturns remains into a collection of beautiful stones that can be displayed in a jar or shared with friends and family. Vinyly has a method for pressing remains into a vinyl album that can playback any audio you would like, such as a favorite song or an audio recording of your dog barking. Some of the ashes can even be placed into a specially made hourglass. Check outJust Hourglasses to learn more.
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Making decisions about what to do with ashes can be tough, so the first step may be to open a dialogue with relevant parties. The goal is to honor the deceased as well as those left behind.
Have you ever had to make a choice regarding remains?