Boas and tutus. By request from the music loving and always dancing 40-year old mom/wife/daughter/friend planning her own goodbye party.

Determined to not leave her young daughter with an experience and memory of overwhelming sadness, she called for lots of merrymaking. Costumes piled in a basket outside the sanctuary where her funeral was being held. Or more accurately, her life being celebrated to the absolute max.

A friend playing the guitar inside, klezmer music being played continuously outside, and a dancing of the horah around her coffin. Yes, that’s right. She had requested the horah for her last big birthday blowout, and wanted it again for her final goodbye. Madness! Silliness of the highest order as her whole family and circle of friends donned tutus and boas and danced around her coffin. They had a photo shoot down by the water. As my friend who recounted this personal experience told me, they laughed and cried throughout.

This is not madness. It’s the highest, most touching, deep, soulful, and gorgeous way of celebrating a life. The life of someone who will be so incredibly missed that why in god’s name would you not go all out to say goodbye? All out in the manner of their life.

It might not have been possible, due to heartbreaking sadness and magnitude of the loss, had this clearly vibrant woman not asked for it.

Who can deny someone’s last wishes?

And that it was the most perfect tribute and healing form of expression is why what we do here is so important.

If you want a fun funeral, stick with me and make sure your family has the instructions. It’s a win-win that only time can prove.