After They’re Gone

If I Die First…

Aging parents face an uneven future in which one will be left behind. FD Reeves’ poem “Home in Wartime” contains two elegant and inspiring stanzas of instructions for both possibilities… From “Home in Wartime” By FD Reeves If I die…

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Inconvenient Eulogy

  Inconvenient Eulogy  by David Solie   Even when things are going your way, Words don’t come easy on funeral day. Mourners turn up with guarded belief, Awaiting your words of pain and grief.   But others arrive with their…

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Steady On…

Things periodically fall apart with our aging parents no matter how hard we try to avoid conflict.   Stay calm and let these episodes have their moment and then pass on. There’s no time to hold a grudge or prove who’s…

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Second Thoughts After They’re Gone

When a parent passes away, we take on a new kind of work. I am not referring to the necessary “estate chores” of filing papers or clearing out the house. I am referring to the psychological process of sorting out…

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When the last parent is gone…

            When The Last Parent Is Gone By David Solie When the last parent is gone, Your heart cannot right itself, Things that should help, Heeding warning signs Repairing loose ends Bracing for impact All…

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Home Unfurnishing Your Parent’s Stuff

This is an excellent article by Richard Eisenberg that offers eight strategies for systematically paring down the stuff of aging parents that apparently nobody wants. It’s a necessary but ultimately awkward ritual of sorting with an eye towards aggressively casting…

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Augmented Eternity: Ready or Not

Read this amazing and disturbing article by Adrienne Matei that is published in “Quartz” entitled Beyond The Grave Technology is rewriting yet another chapter in the book on death. In addition to forestalling physical death with machines that can breath…

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The Dream

Every Mother’s Day I think about my mom’s dream. She longed for a big house on a lake filled with children and the buzz of life, friends dropping in unannounced, and laughter, lots and lots of laughter. Was not to…

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Unclaimed

This moving story from NPR is about teen volunteers in Boston who serve as pallbearers for those who have died alone and become officially “unclaimed.” Their graveside memorial includes these words: “He died alone with no family to comfort him.…

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