The famous anthropologist Margaret Mead said of death in America: "When someone is born, we rejoice; When they marry, we celebrate; Yet when they die, we pretend nothing happened."
Well, not anymore.
There is a growing trend towards "personal tributes", "end of life celebrations", and "grief tributes". People want to connect: with each other, with the spirits of their loved ones, and with themselves.
Personalized tribute celebrations provide greater meaning to the life of the honoree while helping ease the pain of the mourners. If we can honor what is now for a celebration of what was then, it helps to create a transition, a small bridge for our emotions to begin to cross over from the "then" to the "now".
Some Examples of Grief Tributes
For the Golf Enthusiast
A nine-hole game of golf at night on a private course accommodating 100 of his/her closest friends, family, and associates.
A glow-in-the-dark golf ball with his/her name engraved on it for everyone to keep.
Stories of the deceased told at each golf hole on the green.
Before final tee-off, the announcement of a charity – a golf camp academy for urban kids to learn sportsmanship and ethics on the course.
For the Animal Lover
A life celebration at the local zoo.
A tour of the zoo with celebrants sharing stories of deceased or tributee at each location.