Friday, October 06, 2006

Planning my own funeral

Christina the Wench tagged me with a meme... List 5 songs you want played at your funeral.

I immediately thought of THE BIG CHILL's funeral scene. The deceased favorite song? "You Can't Always Get What You Want" by the Stones. The smiles and nods that went around the church as that song was played (on an organ of all things) are what I will be aiming for with my list... Of course "You Can't Always Get What You Want" should be REQUIRED at most funerals!

This, of course, set off a whole chain of thoughts in my head. Things I take out and look at every once in a while, then put back until the next time.

Like - dead people I miss. The list here is not very long. Mostly it consists of family members and a couple of friends. One, in particular, came up - an old neighbor who died many, many years ago. But the way Doris looked at her life and explained it to other people was both hilarious and thought provoking. Like when she spilled a bag of sugar on the floor. Instead of getting upset, she took off her shoes and walked through it to see what it would feel like. Her dog Bat introduced me to the concept of very protective and loyal chihuahuas (I still have the scars on my ankle). I thought of her when one of my new neighbors was out walking her chihuahua puppy and joked about it being her "protection". I mentioned it to my mom, who said she was thinking of Doris just that morning. Her house was full of black widow spiders, but no one ever got bitten. They all lived together peaceably. She was an interesting person who wondered if she had made an impression on this earth - if anyone would ever remember that she'd been here. You did, Doris - and we still miss you.

Then my wending mind came to headstones. I love cemetaries. Played in them as a child. Used headstones as a jumping off point for storytelling. They're so beautiful and peaceful. And I thought... what kind of headstone would I want?

skull headstone castle headstone Face Headstone Frankenstein headstone Sun headstone

Well.... these are all very interesting, but I have no intention of winding up in a cemetary at all. I want to be cremated and scattered around somewhere beautiful. And my headstones should look like this:

Natural headstone

or this:

mts & moon headstone

I want to go back to the earth and leave no trace except in the hearts and minds of the people who loved me and that I loved.

And a heck of a party.

So, without further ado, my list of songs to play at my funeral:

UNWRITTEN by Natasha Bedingfield
This is a fairly recent song that I've been hearing on the radio from time to time. I had to do some research to even find out the title, much less the name of the artist, but I'm glad I found it. This song says a lot about how I feel about life.

I am unwritten, can't read my mind, I'm undefined
I'm just beginning, the pen's in my hand, ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words that you could not find

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions, Feel the rain on your skin,
No one else can feel it for you, only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips, Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins.. The rest is still unwritten.

I break tradition, sometimes my tries are outside the lines
We've been conditioned to not make mistakes, but I can't live that way.

I WILL REMEMBER YOU by Sarah McLachlan
When my son was very, very small, I sang this song to him as a lullaby. He loved to hear me sing it while we drove and it almost always put him to sleep. I think it made him feel that I would keep him safe and loved no matter what. He learned it so well that he could sing it himself - thus freaking out his father who didn't know where our son had come up with the concept of being so tired he couldn't sleep.

I will remember you. Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by... Weep not for the memories.

I'm so tired, but I can't sleep
Standing on the edge of something much too deep
It's funny how we feel so much but we cannot say a word
We are screaming inside, but we can't be heard.

But I will remember you. Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by... Weep not for the memories.

I'm so afraid to love you, but more afraid to lose
Clinging to a past that doesn't let me choose
Once there was a darkness, a deep and endless night.
You gave me everything you had, oh you gave me light.

And I will remember you. Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by... Weep not for the memories.

ROBIN KAY by my husband
Before I met my husband, he spent a lot of time playing in a band. They didn't cut records or sign contracts, but played for the sheer joy of playing. A versatile musician, my husband's first love is acoustic guitar. Over the years, he's come up with some beautiful instrumentals, but far and away my favorite is Robin Kay. That's the name of the street out in the middle of nowhere that I was living on when he moved in with me. I had two acres and a single-wide mobile home with a large deck out front and a covered porch in back. Many a night was spent out on one of the two playing scrabble, drinking coffee, talking, and guitar playing. It was truly our honeymoon... before stepson moved in, before child of our own, before we were even married. That song brings it all back to me.

GROW OLD WITH YOU by Adam Sandler
Odd choice, I know. Especially if I'm already dead, but there you have it. This is from "The Wedding Singer" and is the song that Robbie won Julia over with on the airplane. I cry everytime I hear it.

I wanna make you smile whenever you're sad
Carry you around when your arthritis is bad
All I wanna do is grow old with you.

I'll get your medicine when your tummy aches
Build you a fire if the furnace breaks
Oh it could be so nice, growing old with you.

I'll miss you, kiss you... Give you my coat when you are cold.
Need you, feed you... Even let you hold the remote control.

So let me do the dishes in our kitchen sink
Put you to bed if you've had too much to drink
I could be the man who grows old with you.
I wanna grow old with you.

SOMEWHERE OUT THERE by Linda Ronstadt and Aaron Neville
I know, I know... another odd choice, but strangely hopeful too. I haven't heard this in years but it's another one of those that makes me cry and think about my own life.

Somewhere out there, beneath the pale moonlight
Someone's thinking of me and loving me tonight.
Somewhere out there, someone's saying a prayer
That we'll find one another in that dream somewhere out there.

And evewn though I know how very far apart we are
It helps to think we might be wishin' on the same bright star.
And when the night wind starts to sing a lonesome lullaby
It helps to think we're sleeping underneath the same big sky.

Somewhere out there, if love can see us through
Then we'll be together, somewhere out there... out where dreams come true.

There you have it... Sayre's top 5 funeral songs!


Alice in Wonderbread said...

Confession: I cry every time I see that scene of The Wedding Singer too. It's just too pure a love, so sweet and loving and peaceful and caring and....damn. Best sweet act on Drew ever.

Sayre said...

I love that whole movie. Yes, it's goofy but hey... I'm a sucker for goofy love stories.

Alice in Wonderbread said...

Me too especially when it's believable chemistry and aw heck, Wedding Singer had all my 80s nostalgia in it!

Long live The Psychadelic Furs! Dead or Alive! Oh yeah, and even Robert Smith of The Cure. He's so depressed...but sooo dreamy... hahah

ablondeblogger said...

I love the first two songs! I would want two songs played at my funeral.....Live Like You Were Dying by Tim McGraw. That one becuase it was my uncle's favorite while he was battling cancer and a live band played it at his funeral.

Also, I Can Only Imagine by Mercy Me. That song brings me to my knees! They played that one at Terri Schiavo's memorial service, but I was in love with it way before then, too.

My husband and I have both said that we want people to come to our funerals in the most casual clothes and be totally relaxed. No stuffy suits or mournful dresses. No formality...just relax and be themselves.

factor 10 said...

I, too, would like to be cremated. If it's at all legal, I'd like to have a little bit of my ashes mixed into a couple of cement garden hippos with big silly grins, so if/when my kids miss me, I can be waiting for them in their own back yards where ever they go. Is that totally gross? I dunno. I'm going to shamelessly rip you off, so I'll post my songs over at did-you.