29 Apr Moving with the Times – Zoom Home Funeral & Viewed Cremation
A few weeks ago a person called me to tell me his wife had died in her sleep and he wanted a beautiful casket for her. It turned out I had supplied a casket for Katie’s aunt 10 years earlier.
It was a terrible shock for him and the rest of the family. Katie had an event planned at her home that same weekend. Rusty explained to me the devastation of having to call each person and explain that Katie had died, and ask them to come and share in a home funeral.
On the Sunday I drove an hour south from Half Moon Bay with my beautiful casket tucked into my Prius.
By the Monday it was clear that there would be no home funeral and their plans, as so many others, morphed into an electronic reality. A home funeral courtesy of Zoom. They luckily had a very techie member of the family who was able to set it all up for the Tuesday, getting word out to all their many friends in the bay area and beyond, including other countries.
It was a strange experience, to be seated in front of my computer and observe the many friends pay tribute, with poetry, with song and heartfelt loss, as Katie lay, as if sleeping, in her beautiful casket in her cozy workroom. Rusty and I had sat and chatted in her room when I was there. Such a bucolic view out of the window. A towering redwood on its island in the middle of the peaceful pond.
But no one to hug, to hold hands with, or share in the grief of the sudden loss, was hard to watch. Sharing a joke with ones face in a box inserted into the room on the tv screen wasn’t funny.
My heart went out to them. Even that Sunday we were all “distancing” which was incredibly difficult when Rusty so clearly needed to be hugged.
They repeated their electronic farewell at the crematorium with immediate family witnessing the final farewell.
Let’s hope when this virus is killed they will be able to congregate in the same room, when hugging will be allowed again.