I don’t like to dwell on loss and death, particularly on a business website which celebrates love and life through photography but I thought I might share this personal story with you to inspire you to make more out of the photographs that you and your family may have taken a lifetime to collect.
Last year my father sadly passed away, and having organised most of the funeral arrangements, I wondered about his eulogy.
Dad was keen to speak at a number of funerals I’d attended with him, his brother’s and his wife’s (my step mother) particularly and I understood he felt it the right thing to do on such occasions.
I’d thought about what I might say at his funeral, but kept hitting something of a block. I’d shared many memories with dad, but didn’t have the feeling that I needed to share any these stories with other people, for some reason. I felt some guilt and a certain amount of pressure to do or say something at this funeral service, rather than leave it to someone who didn’t really know him very well.
With so much to do after the death of a loved one, I put it to the back of my mind, at least in the short term, until the date was looming and it became more pressing to organise something suitable.
As part of clearing out his house, I’d come across Dad’s old photograph albums, he loved taking photos and lots of them too. As I started to go through them, the idea came to mind about doing a presentation of his favourite images for the funeral, a kind of collage of his life.
I spoke to the funeral directors, who in turn spoke to the venue and after a day or two they said it would be fine to present on a screen at the venue, if I forwarded the slideshow ahead of the day, which I did.
The more I thought about it, the more it made sense to celebrate Dad’s life with photos of his life, shared with the family he loved, many of whom would be at the funeral. It would give them a chance to reminisce the good old days, and to feel part of the day rather more than they would at a funeral.
It turned out to be a nice surprise for many of the people attending the funeral service, and seem to go down well with all.
I liked the poem by LInda Ellis called “the dash” so incorporated it into the slideshow because we were celebrating Dad’s dash after all.
Hope it inspires you to make the most of those precious memories that you’ve captured in the past and are going to capture years into the future.