I have always been interested in facilitating rituals celebrating birth, marriage and death. Weddings, funerals and naming ceremonies are beautiful opportunities to share stories and come together as a family and community to celebrate life, love and connection.
When I was younger I felt that I did not have the wisdom or insight from life’s experiences to bring to ceremonies as a celebrant.
I became a marriage celebrant in 2006 and have officiated mainly for friends and family at about 30 ceremonies celebrating marriage/commitment and births. I chose to do this as a hobby while working in senior corporate roles and then caring for my children and terminally ill husband.
I did not have the experience of a very close loved one dying until six years ago when my husband died at home from brain cancer in 2012. My father then died in 2017 from early onset Alzheimers.
At both times, my children and I were fortunate to have a strong community of friends and family to support us. We coped as well as we could through the dying process, the deaths, the funeral and memorials thereafter.
Both deaths were some of the most intense weeks of my life but also the most life affirming, connecting and joyous.
I write about some of these experiences on this blog. www.rainbowsandrollercoasters.com.
Now that my children are older and my father has died, I have the capacity, skills and experience to contribute and connect to my community who are facing similar challenges. I am emotionally grounded and available to serve others as a funeral celebrant.
I will always fondly remember the first funeral that I conducted. It was a graveside service for a much loved gentleman in his eighties. His five adult children, his sister and I wrote and planned the service together. We worked with a team of four professional, caring, compassionate and flexible funeral directors to make sure that everything was just right. I shared a eulogy at the beginning and then ten people came forward and shared their memories. This beautiful song was played at the end of the service as the gentleman who loved to sail was reunited in the grave with his wife. “The Voyage by Christie Moore” It was a sad service but also uplifting, full of love, laughter and gratitude.
Every person and family has their own stories, rituals, beliefs and style that can be incorporated into a funeral or memorial service.
It is a delight, honour and privilege to create ceremonies with families and officiate at funeral services. To acknowledge the loss of a loved one while also celebrating the love and light.