Ideas on What to Do With Cremation Ashes

Ideas on What to Do With Cremation Ashes

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After a death, there is often a lot of pressure on those who are grieving to find acceptance and “move on”. The concept of moving on after a death is a bit of a misnomer; in fact, it’s far more likely that the person will simply adapt to their new life without this person, never fully allowing the space in their life to close.

Deciding what to do with the person’s ashes can help in the grieving process by providing a sense of closure. But saying goodbye to the ashes forever can be incredibly distressing. The truth is that individuals don’t have to rush their decision on what to do with the ashes. It’s perfectly acceptable to wait a year or two before deciding on the right place for the ashes.

If you’re currently facing the impossible decision of what to do with a loved one’s ashes, read on to learn more about the options available to you.

Keep the ashes

The most popular option for cremation ashes is to keep them in your home. You can choose to have the ashes placed in a decorative urn or box that you can keep in your home. This doesn’t have to be a forever solution, but it can be an ideal stopgap solution before you decide what you would like to do next.

Taking a pause between the cremation and deciding what to do with the ashes can give you time to grieve and decide what would bring you the most comfort and support. Keeping the ashes can help you to feel closer to your loved one and will make you feel connected to their memory.

However, keeping the ashes can have the opposite intended effect for some people. They might become too attached to the ashes and the stress of losing them or breaking the urn can become troubling, to the point of making it difficult to let go.

Bury the ashes

Another popular choice is to bury the ashes. This will allow you to have a burial ceremony, which can help to give a sense of closure. Burying the ashes will give you a place you can visit and feel connected to your loved one. Some people bury them in their own garden and then plant special flowers and plants on the site. Others will bury them in a church yard alongside other graves. It’s common to have a grave marker made to commemorate the place.

A disadvantage of burying the ashes is that it can tie you to a place. If you bury the ashes in your garden, for example, you might feel anxiety about selling your home in the future. The garden will have great emotional significance and this can plunge you back into the grieving process if you decide to move on.

Scatter the ashes

Another popular choice for handling cremation ashes is to scatter them in a place that was meaningful to your loved one. Like a burial ceremony, scattering the ashes can also help to bring a sense of closure. Choosing the spot can be very difficult, and if you have to settle on a place between a few people with conflicting ideas, it can be hard to choose the right place.

You also need to check local regulations to make sure that scattering ashes is permitted. There is also the environmental impact to consider, as ashes can pollute waterways and cause damage to plants and trees.

Turn the ashes into art or jewellery

One final option to consider is to turn the ashes into a piece of memorial artwork or jewellery. This will often happen alongside one of the methods listed above. For example, you could design a piece of jewellery made from ashes and then bury the remaining ashes. This will allow you to hold on to a small portion of the ashes for comfort, but say goodbye to the bulk of the ashes so you can move on with your life.

You could also turn the ashes into a piece of artwork, and it’s not uncommon for families to commission portraits that have the ashes mixed into the paint, or glass artworks with the ashes folded into the glass.

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