This article by Erica Buist from The Guardian says so well what I Want a Fun Funeral is so much about.
I’m not sure I ever articulated this point even to myself, but boy does it get to the heart of the matter:
“We don’t want to trivialise the loss, but why not trivialise death?
Forgive the language, but fuck death. It wins every time; it doesn’t need our respect. It robs us of our self-esteem, our individuality. We spend our lives denying that we’re mere mammals crawling about the earth, by imbuing ourselves with cultural value. We develop tastes, opinions, preferences and passions, we produce art and name buildings and children and stars after ourselves, we have stories and narratives.
When we die, we’re demoted. We become like everyone who ever died, every beast, every insect, every perished germ. This is why we don’t speak ill of the dead; it’s kicking them while they’re six feet down.
The rise of the celebratory funeral is an effort to elevate the deceased back up to where we think they belong. A common complaint about traditional funerals is that they can feel impersonal; cookie-cutter services that don’t capture who the person was. By focusing only on the loss, we risk making “they’re dead” the most salient fact about them.
…the rise of the celebratory funeral is… a way of saying, “You win again, death. But that doesn’t mean this is about you.”
PERFECT sentiment in my book. Celebratory funerals may not be for everyone, as the author points out in her article, but since we are all going to die and it’s just part of life, you can’t beat the desire to usurp the attention from death and bring it back to life. Because it is the life of the person we will miss.
Our deaths are a given, it’s our lives that leave a mark.