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When Barry was alive, he always told me that he wanted me to keep his ashes in the back of the van, and then if I got stuck in the ice or snow, to throw him under the tires and he'd help me get going. LOL I was always horrified when he said that, but now it makes me smile and laugh at his humour, which I miss every single day.
He was cremated, but he was a big guy. Tall and stocky, and overweight, so I have a LOT of ashes. When I was at the funeral home with my mom, I picked out an oak urn and had it engraved, and he was put inside. This is now sitting on top of my very high book shelf that we can look at but not see unless we look for it. There were extra ashes though, and some I had put into the kids' teddy bears (we made teddy bears at Build a Bear last father's day,the ashes I took along were in film canisters), and maybe an 1/8th of a tsp I had put in my pendant (which I showed on an earlier post), but we have so many more.
I was doing what I thought was the proper thing when he died. I know he wanted an urn, so I got one. But now I don't know what to do with them at all. I have extra in my hope chest, and this big heavy oak box on my book shelf. It was a waste of $300 to be honest. We dont have anywhere that is extremely special to us, I don't feel right about putting him in a cemetary because what if I move some day? but would it be wrong to keep him in the closet? One of my girlfriends did this actually, she didn't "display" them. I just did that because I felt it was right, but now I don't really want to have them out. And let's not get started on the extras..yikes.
I'm just drawing a blank because I don't know what to do. I guess I could keep them till the kids are older and then if they want to have them, they can divvy them up? that sounds morbid, but i dont have any other ideas.
I divided the ashes in half and kept one box for myself and gave the other box to my in-laws. Ben had designated four places he would like his ashes spread. He wanted them spread in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, along the Indiana Dunes, at my grandparent's lake cabin in Washington state and in the mountains of Northern Idaho. After he died we had a memorial service in Washington and the next day all the family went up to my grandparent's cabin and spread ashes. It was so nice for all my extended family to be able to spread a few of his ashes. He had meant so much to them and they appreciated it. My in-laws have spread his ashes in Wisconsin and Indiana. I still have a ton of ashes in a box that I keep in the closet and every year on our anniversary my son and I go to the mountains in Idaho and spread a few ashes and have a "daddy day" as we like to call it. My in-laws also purchased a mini urn that sits on my mantle. I like it because it is only a couple inches tall and unassuming. When my father-in-law passed away my mother-in-law also bought a mini urn for my son and that sits next to the one I have for my husband. I don't know if I will ever spread all the ashes. I like knowing that if I ever feel the need to spread them I have that option.
My sons and I made a special place to put my husbands ashes. We have pictures, his Bible a stone bible with the yea though I walk thrugh the shadow of death. We have a special candle we light at 5pm on the 6th of every month. And many other things that give us comfort.
I'm glad I'm not the only one with this problem. We picked out his urn together - Dave wanted two - divide half the ashes and have one urn at our main house, the other at our lake cabin 7 mi away. After everything, I didn't follow his wishes with the dividing (probably why he hasn't "visited" as so many people ask, & that I just don't feel him close by) and only did one urn. On the main holidays and days our "Friday Afternoon Boat Club-FABC got together, I took the urn with to the cabin - I just couldn't divide "him", just couldn't do it. He had wanted a stainless steel urn, but then let me go with a green/sea blue pottery urn (If most people were around to have heard our conversation, they would have thought we were pretty sick people, but what do you do when standing there with your terminally ill husband, having a discussion no one should have to have, but make it funny and add in humor? Dave's sense of humor sounds like Momtofour's Barry) - I have it on a shelf, in a room we finished two years ago that also looks through the rest of the house - ivy wrapped around it so that those that know it's there know, those that don't don't.
Dave had said he wanted, when I died (my plan is cremation too) to spread his ashes wherever I have mine spread - but what do I do with it/him in the meantime? His family were extremely angry that he wasn't going to be buried, and had even asked the funeral director to give them the ashes so they could do so. If they knew their son at all, they'd never do that. Dave was adamant about not being buried, especially the last few months - he didn't want to be where it was always dark (I have a low watt lamp on on that shelf during the night) nor where it was cold, nor underground. His Hodgkin's was in his lungs and he was always scared that in the end he'd suffocate to death - which I think he connected burial to as well.
Do I follow through with his wishes? We more than any know that time is uncertain, but at 40, he could be on a shelf for a long time. One of our boys wants to bury him in the yard of our lake cabin 'cause Dave loved it there - but there's that "burying" again. The other wants him where he is. I suggested sprinkling him in the lake - both were grossed out thinking of swimming in the lake w/ Dad's ashes.
My husband was a solid guy- physically and emotionally. The rock for me and his family. His taste was simple and natural so I struggled trying to find an urn for his ashes because he would not have wanted something ornate. I finally found one that was perfect- it is a 40 lb solid hunk of dark gray/ black granite that is honed and polished on the top and rough cut on the sides. Perfect for my polished yet tough guy. It sits on a shelve unit in the living room and most people don't even know what it contains. It looks more like a granite piece of art. My husband wanted my ashes placed in the same urn as his so it is large enough for both of us when my time comes. I am just going to keep it in my bedroom or living room since it is so innocuous and it can even be placed in the garden outside because it can withstand weather. I am really glad I chose something that fits in the house or the in garden but in a container that I can take with me. Maybe you could do something similar?