Sometimes I Feel Like a Piece of Bologna

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Funeral Pre-Planning Makes Life Easier

As expected, the major responsibility for planning my step dad’s memorial service fell to me. But my parents did something right! (My mom would be amazed to hear me say this, although I’ve already told her). They pre-planned and pre-paid their funeral details.

When we came home from the hospital, Mom went to the closet and pulled out a large folder marked “Funeral.” In it were the pre-need contracts for both of their services, as well as drafts of their obituaries. We made an appointment at the mortuary for the next day and went in to meet with the funeral director. We had talked about what we wanted and what we didn’t, and were done in an hour.

What we learned is that when you make a change in the pre-need contract, it reverts to today’s prices. But they had purchased more than they needed, so we were able to subtract several hundred dollars from the original price. They had paid for it with a life insurance policy, which has continued to increase, so it’s all covered and it looks as if we’ll get a refund. I’m not sure we got the best deal, but saving so much over what they had expected to pay—and having it paid for—made the decisions easy.

I was able to write the obituary and program materials from the items in the file. What a relief to be able to just sit down and write. Especially since I had never lived with them and didn’t know a lot about his past.

So, thanks to Mom and Dad for making this Gen Sandwicher’s job so much easier. And now, it’s time for my husband and I to do the same for our son. The National Care Giver’s Library offers forms to help you.

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