«Return to Blog List Options after Cremation
Cremation has become increasingly popular over the years. For some, it’s about being environmentally friendly, for others it’s about returning back to the Earth and, for some, it’s a matter of economy. The professional services for a cremation are less than those of a traditional funeral but that doesn’t mean it’s any easier. In fact, many families leave the memorial service with an urn in their hands and no idea what they should do next.
Finding a home for the ashes of a loved one can be difficult. The first decision to make is whether or not you want to keep the ashes or find a way to scatter them. It is possible to do both, and some people find great comfort in keeping part of the ashes while scattering the rest. As with any grieving process, there is no right or wrong answer, it’s all about finding a way to get closure and help the healing process.
For those who wish to scatter some or all of the ashes, there are a number of options. When most people consider scattering ashes they think of depositing them in a park, city or other place especially loved by the deceased. When scattering ashes in privately owned areas, be sure you know the rules. Disneyland in Florida, for example, has released a number of public announcements attempting to discourage people from depositing ashes on the grounds. Scattering ashes along the coat, into a favorite lake, in a national forest or other public land is often a way for families and friends to let their loved one go in a tangible way, even if they still struggle with their efforts to let go emotionally. Ashes are also commonly scattered directly into an ocean, lake, river or stream that holds significant meaning for the deceased.
Should you decide to keep the ashes, or any part of them, there are a surprising number of options to choose from. Of course, keeping a person’s ashes in an urn is perhaps the most common. Today, urns come in a number of styles and colors which range from traditional urns to modern pieces of art. Some families choose to have the ashes mixed into concrete before a memorial statue or bench is created. Incorporating the ashes in this way offers the best of both worlds for many families. The ashes are, in a sense, scattered, but in a way that still provides family and friends with a tangible memorial for their loved one.
Memorial reefs have become one of the more popular new options. Cremated remains are used in the construction of these large, cement based reefs which are then lowered into the water. Family members can be there when the reefs are lowered and, in some cases, family and friends who have experience with diving are able to actually place the reefs themselves. These reefs then go one to help underwater sea life, providing a place for life to thrive and, at the same time, giving family and friends a place to visit. This has become a popular option for those who have served in the Navy or who enjoyed a career or personal passion for the open water.
Of course, many families opt for cremation because ultimately, they want to keep their loved one close by. Traditional urns remain a popular choice but, as with any growing consumer population, more and more options are being developed. If urns aren’t your thing, you can choose to have the ashes kept in a number of other containers. Like the memorial reefs and outdoor benches discussed earlier, ashes can be incorporated into the creation of precious gemstones, pieces of hand blown glass or as part of the initial dirt and nutrients used to plant a new tree. Other noteworthy options include
Losing a loved one is never easy, and dealing with the aftermath of a death is one of the most difficult things any of us will go through. As more and more of us turn to cremation, options on what to do with the ashes continue to expand. Whether you want to release the ashes into the world or find a way to keep them close to your heart, there are options for you.