Traditionally, funeral directing has happened behind closed doors creating an air of mystery about the profession and everything surrounding it. As a modern funeral director, we encourage more open conversation about funerals and funeral directing. To help with this, we’re sharing a typical day for one of our funeral directors (this may differ for other services).
Looking after people who have died
After someone has died, we go to the place where they have died and bring them into our care (and usually look after people until the day of their funeral). Depending on the circumstances and the wishes of the person who has died and their family, this may involve delivering personal care, dressing someone, or doing their nails, hair and makeup.
Sometimes people also need some care which is exclusively for people after death. This depends on specific circumstances, and we would always try to facilitate a family being involved in these decisions (gently and only if they want to). Most people have heard of embalming, which is an example of such a procedure.
Supporting people to make funeral arrangements
We spend much of our time helping people to understand what is possible and then creating time and space to support them to work out what works best for them. We start by trying to understand what is important to the person who has died and their family and friends and then expand on these ideas by structuring the decisions that need to be made and sharing ideas.
This might include needing to do some research about new options, places, or people so that we can suggest things which are specific to that individual.
Once the decisions have been made, then it is our job to pull everything together.
Support on the day of the funeral
On the day of the funeral, we are there to make sure that the event is as the family and friends wanted it to be. In many cases, this involves ensuring that all the carefully prepared plans and timings are adhered to. However, sometimes that also involves navigating the unexpected and being able to make quick judgements and decisions about how to adapt the plan in response to unforeseen circumstances.
Pre- and post-funeral support
As funeral directors, we are well placed to support people to understand and write down their own funeral wishes or purchase a pre-paid funeral plan. We know the benefit of people leaving funeral wishes and see how consoling it is for people to be able to gift the fulfilment of these wishes after someone has died.
Similarly, because we support people who have been bereaved, we are well-placed to share helpful information about bereavement support. We also run a peer bereavement support group.
We believe that the more people know about funerals and choices, the better.
Please visit our website for more information www.fullcirclefunerals.co.uk
Full Circle Funerals, 1 Westbourne Crescent, Crossley Hill, Halifax HX3 0PJ