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Planning the Funeral

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Planning the Funeral

Postby riehlism » Tue Aug 10, 2010 05:39 pm

by riehlism (655 Posts), Tue Aug 10, 2010 05:39 pm

This post might be slightly disorganized just because I am really unsure about what to do. We lost our son in June and we opted to wait to bury him. We decided to bury him on his expected due date, 9/17.

I am having a hard time trying to figure out how to plan the funeral. My husband and I are not religious so we don't know how that will work. We are also unsure about who to invite to the funeral. We would like to be buried with our son when the time comes, so we are also unsure about which headstone to buy. I would like to have his picture on the funeral program, but he was so cyanotic in the picture. I don't know if that will be too hard for guests.

Can any of you share your thoughts, experiences about a baby funeral?
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby l412angel » Tue Aug 10, 2010 06:31 pm

by l412angel (1746 Posts), Tue Aug 10, 2010 06:31 pm

Never an easy time :( On who to invite...I kept it family only, because it is very hard for people to see an infant not alive...its just sad :(. For Cara it was open casket, but she looked very red :( We did however have her pictures in the back on a table for people who wanted to see.

I do not think that you need to be religious for a funeral. You could read a poem, or letter? You can always make it short and sweet. You could hand everyone a blue balloon to set free outside the funeral home or at his grave?

As for headstones, I am sure that they can keep spaces blank for you and your husband?
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby jamilyn » Tue Aug 10, 2010 09:01 pm

by jamilyn (430 Posts), Tue Aug 10, 2010 09:01 pm

They do very pretty 3 person headstones. You can put him in the middle of the both of you or on whichever side you would like. Both of my sons funerals were closed casket. I saw them both the night before the funeral (which was a week after they passed) and they had changed a lot so we didn't have any other family in the room with me when we did it except for my Mom, my husband and our photographer with our last son Anthon.
We had family at both funerals and invited very close friends. We had it 4 hours away from where we live and where are families are from so a few friends made the drive but for the most part it was just our families and we did graveside services and then did luncheons afterwards and had everyone together.
I wish I could see your signature, I cant remember how far along you were when you lost your precious Angel. Anthon we delivered stillborn at 25 weeks and he looked just like a perfect little tiny baby, I picked a picture that one of the nurses took just minutes after my delivery (she took my camera so brad could hold him and my hand). If you arent comfortable with a picture you could put Ultrasound pictures on the program. If you would like I could email you our little Anthons Funeral program to give you some ideas. My 1st son Dallins looked just about the same. I used to work at a Funeral home/Mortuary so if you have any questions please let me know.
Oh and you def dont have to use anything religious at the funeral. You can read poems that you like that have helped you get thru it or songs. I used religious songs but you def could do one that wasnt if you wanted a song.
Planning your childs funeral is never anything any parent should have to do. Im so sorry you are having to do this.
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby heather j » Tue Aug 10, 2010 09:42 pm

by heather j (4882 Posts), Tue Aug 10, 2010 09:42 pm

One of our members was a co-founder of the following site:
http://www.glowinthewoods.com/how-to-plan-a-babys-funeral/

Another co-founder just recently blogged on this, and I thought you may want to read it, too. There are no words for how sad and heartbreaking it is that anyone has to bury her sweet baby. I'm so sorry.
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby kerisue » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:07 pm

by kerisue (623 Posts), Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:07 pm

I had a memorial service rather than a funeral. I invited anyone and everyone who cares about me, Millie, or my family and we ended up with a large number of people. I was happy about that because I felt like I was sharing Millie with them in a way, something I won't be able to do now. Millie's body wasn't at the memorial service. We had a viewing up at the cemetary after, but I wish I hadn't done that as she looked nothing like she did when she was alive. At the actual moment of burial only close family was there.

I attend a Unitarian Universalist church and had the service there (although you don't have to be a member to have a service there). Other than the eulogy, I planned the entire service. They are quite open to non-religious readings and songs. I found two wonderful poems that served as the readings. One of them might be meaningful to you. It's titled "The End" by Rabindranath Tagore, an Indian poet and mystic. I bet it's copyrighted so I won't reproduce it here, but would be happy to send it to you. One of the songs I chose was "How Could Anyone?" (not religious). It was in our hymnal but it's also on Itunes and if you google the song and artist's name (Libby Roderick)you can find the lyrics. It's simple and beautiful and very fitting for our little ones who were with us so briefly.

As for burial- Millie is buried in the baby section at the cemetary I chose. For now I wanted her to be with the other babies. At the same time I purchased my own burial plot (Millie's father is no longer involved) and had it written into the purchase contract that when i die she will be disinterred and buried in the same plot as me. She will have her own headstone, but it hasn't arrived yet.

I hope my ideas spark some ideas for you. I like your plan to do this on his due date. I would like to do something for Millie on her due date too, but I don't quite know what yet.
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby sam10 » Wed Aug 11, 2010 00:51 am

by sam10 (1436 Posts), Wed Aug 11, 2010 00:51 am

A funeral for your own baby is a very difficult thing to organize. It is also very personal. This is the reason why me and my husband did not invite anybody else, as we wanted to have this moment for us. It was a very intimate and quiet funeral with an open casket. Afterward we went to lunch with my husband's family (mine are in Europe and could not make it in time).

Henry was buried in the so called angel lot at the cemetery of our town. No individual headstones are there, yet it is a very peaceful place with big old evergreens and woods in the back.

I think it is a great idea to plan the funeral on your baby's original due date. We had something special planned for Henry's original due date and it was good to have the day planned.

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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby riehlism » Wed Aug 11, 2010 01:26 am

by riehlism (655 Posts), Wed Aug 11, 2010 01:26 am

Thank you all for your support and ideas. Kerisue, I looked up that poem and it's fantastic. Thank you so much.

I don't really know what to feel right now. My husband and I have our first grief counseling appointment this Friday. My in-laws are going to be in town in two weeks to help us with arrangements. I guess I'm just lost in the jumble of emotions.
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby sam10 » Wed Aug 11, 2010 06:31 pm

by sam10 (1436 Posts), Wed Aug 11, 2010 06:31 pm

My emotions were running wild and it was and sometimes still is hard to keep up with them. I let them happen and roll over me, but I try to always follow my heart and be true to myself.

Me and my husband started counseling shortly after Henry passed and we are still going regularly. For me this has been a very helpful aspect in the grieving process.

((Hugs))

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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby brianned5 » Mon Aug 16, 2010 07:06 pm

by brianned5 (567 Posts), Mon Aug 16, 2010 07:06 pm

Our daughter was buried four days after she died. The only people we allowed to see her at the funeral home were the ones who saw her in the hospital when she was alive. I knew a lot of people would come just to see what a one pound, deceased baby looked like, so we only wanted the people who were with her in life to see her in death. I'm so glad we did it that way, and have absolutely no regrets about that decision. We did welcome everyone to the graveside service. We have family plots so Kylie was buried in-between where my husband and I plan to be. Two days after she died we purchased our headstone. It's for all three of us.
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Re : Planning the Funeral

Postby atvlady » Thu Aug 26, 2010 09:00 pm

by atvlady (1000 Posts), Thu Aug 26, 2010 09:00 pm

Jasmin. It is a very difficult time. My husband and I are not religious either. I called a preacher from the church my Aunt goes to and that was a HUGE mistake :( I too am wanting to do "another" service for her next June. I think you have to go with what you believe in. You may can write down how it felt to carry your baby and even the painful joy you had of seeing him. You can speak of it or have someone to do it for you.
Invite people close to you, support people.
Headstone, we are getting Darren one but when I die she will be placed in my coffin with me then her headstone will go below mine.
Even though he was cyanotic in the picture, he is still your son. If people don't like it, they can fold it up and put it in their pocket. Not trying to be rude but your pregnancy and birth of your son was a gift, even though he is no longer with you and your hubby.
Hope this helps. Need anything, let me know.
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