If your loved was cremated upon his or her death, it must be decided what should be done with the ashes. Because many people have watched movies or television programs where ashes are released, they may have a romanticized notion of what releasing or spreading ashes can be. The death of someone you love is painful enough without being unprepared for what is involved in scattering his or her ashes. Below you will find some helpful information so that you will be better prepared to for what spreading or scattering ashes can entail.
The ash isn’t what you think
It is natural to assume that you will receive a container of campfire-like ash from the funeral home who handled the cremation services. After all, even if the word ash didn’t bring that image to mind, television and movies certainly portray it that way. It is important that you realize that the ashes of your loved ones don’t look as you imagine they will. They likely contain small bone fragments as well as pieces of metal that may come from tooth fillings or surgical implants. The ash itself is also more like coarse, heavy sand, or even tiny pebbles, not a fine soot, as you may expect.
You have many options
Often people believe that scattering or spreading the remains in the deceased’s favorite place is the best choice and most people feel they must do that on their own. However, there are actually many options out there and many companies who can assist you in more unique options. These include:
- Having your loved one’s remains taken into space
- Having pencils made from the ashes, with your loved one’s name embossed on the finished product
- Wearing the ashes in the form of jewelry, much like lockets, or have the ashes actually turned into diamonds
- Having hour glasses made using the ashes
- Combining the ashes with soil to grow a memorial tree
If you prefer to go the route of scattering your loved one’s ashes on your own, there are some things you should consider:
- Crowds- Will you feel comfortable releasing the ashes in an area where there are many strangers to bear witness?
- Permission- What are state and local laws regarding the release of human remains? Do you need a permit?
- Will you scatter the ashes all at once, or would you prefer to spread some in several different places?
- Will you hold a ceremony and invite others to release the ashes or will it be a solitary venture?
- Do you want to hire a company that has experience with ash release, such as a charter boat for an ocean release or a plane for an air release, or would you prefer to handle it all on your own? Do you have the means to do so?
There is no timetable
Unlike burial, there is no hurry to release or spread the ashes. You may wait as long as you would like. Once you feel comfortable with the idea of scattering the ashes, you can begin to plan where you would like to lay your loved one to rest.
It’s possible you will never feel that you want to scatter the ashes, and that’s perfectly acceptable. Keeping the remains in a beautiful urn in your home is a fine choice. You should not spread the ashes unless you are ready. It’s a final goodbye you don’t want to regret.
Scattering, spreading or releasing ashes can be a wonderful way to honor the deceased. Find the choice that is best for you as you say your final farewell to your loved one.Read More