Author Topic: Headstone  (Read 3376 times)

Wynne

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Headstone
« on: January 07, 2016, 07:45:49 PM »
Hello all.  I am just now getting a grave marker and I'm not sure what to do about it.  When first asked (maybe the day of the funeral, or a day or two after) I said that I would get a single since I didn't know what the future will hold.  When I got home I felt terrible and broke down from the guilt of saying that.  Like I had hurt Ronnie's feelings.  Since then I've planned on a double stone.  He is in my family's plot so I will be there, which I love. I can't process the future and have no desire to remarry but I feel that discounting the possibility isn't logical.  As other young widows, were any of you in a similar situation?  I know I have to make a personal choice, preferably very soon, but I'm having a weirdly hard time with it.  (I've actually tried to post this twice before and haven't been able to click post.  I feel like a bad person thinking about it.  Maybe I've answered my own question.....)
Courage, dear heart   ~C.S. Lewis

Wheelerswife

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2016, 07:58:54 PM »
Hi, Wynne,

First of all, you don't have to make an immediate decision.  You might feel pressure to do so, but the grave will be there when you are ready to make a decision on the stone.

This is what I did.  I have a double plot and a double stone on my first husband's grave.  My name is engraved on the stone, too.  My second husband bought a single plot for his late wife and put a single stone on her grave. Then he decided to buy the adjacent plot.  We decided that we would be cremated and have our ashes split between our first spouses and ourselves together.  (Our first spouses are buried on opposite coasts of the US.) 

After my second husband died, I eventually had half of his ashes buried beside his late wife and I bought him a complementing stone there.  I also bought a plot where we lived and put a stone on that one, too, for us.  My name is engraved on that stone, too.  I still have "my" half of his ashes at home with me.  I will either bury them here or keep them with me for the future.  I haven't decided on that yet.

There is no correct way to do this.  Just do what feels right for you and the others for whom this matters.

Hugs,

Maureen
Life is short.  Love with all you've got. 

Barry 11/29/55-9/22/09       John  1/16/57-1/11/14

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Karin

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2016, 08:22:25 PM »
I think everyone's experience will be different, and you have to do what's right for you.  I don't have any advice to offer, but I'll give you my story. 

I will preface it with the fact that burial location and cemetery visiting mean absolutely nothing to me.  If I want to feel close to Eddie, there are so many other places I would visit before the cemetery.  To me, no matter where he's buried, he's not "there".  I've visited once since the funeral and am sure to visit again after the stone is placed, but other than that, I don't feel the need to be there.

I had to decide quickly how to handle the single/double question, as it was a question of real estate that had to be decided before Eddie could be buried.  On the day following the night he died, his parents and I were to meet with the funeral home to make that decision.  In my case, we lived in California, while all of my family is in the Midwest, and all of his family is in California.  I chose to have Eddie laid to rest in California, in the same cemetery as his grandparents, where his parents and one sibling have also already made pre-arrangements for themselves.  That place is so crowded that unless you plan for both residencies, so to speak, at the same time, there's no way the second person can end up next to (or on top of!) the first person.  So, I had to decide immediately.

Knowing that he would not want me to feel tethered by the financial obligation, that my family is 2,000 miles away, and not knowing what else life has in store for me, I opted not to plan to be buried with him.  We never had kids, so no need to stay together for their benefit, either.  I did, however, agree and arrange with his parents to move forward with the double plot, with the intention that his brother (99.99% likely to never marry) will be buried with him when his time comes.  Eddie and his brother were always very close, so I know he would approve.  My difficulty, now, is in choosing a dual stone layout that works well for the two brothers, as consistency will dictate that however the wording and details on Eddie's side are laid out, his brother's side will follow suit, or at least my little symmetry loving mind hopes so.  That's still in progress, with a very irritating amount of wait time between my requests for information and the coordinator's responses.

Guaruj

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2016, 09:16:51 PM »
Hi Wynne -

I think it's smart that you chose a double plot. That's what I did for my wife, Catherine. As for the headstone, I had the monument dealer design it so that she had her entry in the top half with the bottom half blank. He told me that the stone could be modified later for whomever, if anyone, is laid to rest beside her. I worked with my in-laws on this and said at the time "I expect this to be Catherine's stone for the next 30 years". They acknowledged that someone else, perhaps one of Catherine's siblings, might wind up sharing the plot.

Please don't feel guilty about this. Leave room for all the possibilities that might happen during the rest of this century. And make sure you work with a good monument dealer.

serpico

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2016, 09:26:52 PM »
The cemetery at our Catholic Church automatically gave us a double plot, and a month or so later it was suggested to me that I consider a third plot in case I would remarry. Great idea, and I did it, but the problem is that it's customary to bury the husband on the left and the wife on the right, and the third plot is to the right of my wife.  So now I'm engaged and will sometime soon have to tell my fianc?e that if she wants to be buried with me, my first wife will be between us.  Not looking forward to that one.  :-\

As for the headstone, I was supposed to get something placed within a year but I didn't get to it that quickly.  It was finally placed at about the two-year mark.  It's a single stone, which I think caught my MIL off guard, but I'm glad I made that decision.
'I think I got some of your pickle'

Trying

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2016, 09:42:43 PM »
My husband decided at the last minute that he wanted a plot for his mom to visit and asked me to bury his ashes instead of spreading them as we had talked about before he ever got sick.  I did as he asked and got a double plot. I have only visited a few times because it feels like it's more for my mother in law, she likes to leave things all over the plot that have no meaning to me and make me feel less connected to DH.   I will have my ashes placed next to him or divided in half if I remarry or spread the other half somewhere special.  It depends on when I go.  New guy and I have discussed this because I'm a planner and have this need for him to know everything, just in case.

I think it is a very difficult thing to have to decide within the first 48 hours after someone dies.  I would not let them put my name on the other side of the marker because I thought that would be very hard for my kids to look at.
You will forever be my always.

Rally

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2016, 10:36:25 PM »
My husband's aunt and uncle gifted me a double plot after his very unexpected death this spring. We both have strong ties to the cemetery and I was very thankful for their generous gift. I opted to have a double headstone placed...I didn't anticipate the impact seeing my name on a headstone would have on my girls. I designed, ordered, and paid for the stone within 2 weeks of his death, honestly, I don't know if that was the wisest decision.  I would probably still order a double stone that my information could be added to later if needed.

Mrskro

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2016, 10:19:35 AM »
Here's my story.  My DH is buried with my family directly behind my mother, my father had already purchased multiple plots as he didn't want to be buried next to people he didn't know  (to each there own)    I waited almost 6 months before purchasing the stone.  I had alot of people push me to put one in; some said for closure (I'd like to know how putting my name on a tombstone at 41 yrs old is fucking closure); some said for respect; (there was a tasteless paper sign stuck in his grave);  and some said to "just get it over with".  and my father made me promise that it would be the same size as his and my mom's since they back onto each other.  My kids; 15 and 13 have never been, won't go; can't go; have both had complete meltdowns when the subject is brought up. So the stone does nothing for them  I knew where he was buried; I actually visit the grave; I'd sit with my back leaning against my mom's and visit.  Now the damn stone is up; my name is on a tombstone and I have no where to fucking sit!

My only advice is it's your decision. Take your time; do what's right for you.

Lisa

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2016, 01:45:24 PM »
My husband's cremains are in his family's plot. I plan for mine to be buried there regardless of remarriage or coupling.
"All the waves must reach the shore before the water calms"-Ray ♡

swilson

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2016, 03:52:24 PM »
Last year, 10 months after she died, I purchased a companion monument as the brochure called it. It's lettered with both our names, DOB, her DOD and our wedding date. On the back side of the monument, I had them letter a panel with our sons names, 2 arrows and Psalms 127: 3 - 4.
~ she's gone to Heaven so I've got to be good, so I can see my baby when I leave this world ~

Wynne

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2016, 06:46:18 PM »
Wow.  You guys have given me lots of ideas and lots of things I hadn't considered.  In this case more information has helped me focus on what are priorities in my mind and what are not.  I will think on it and do what feels right.  Thank you.
Courage, dear heart   ~C.S. Lewis

Guaruj

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2016, 08:33:17 PM »
Wow.  You guys have given me lots of ideas and lots of things I hadn't considered.

You'll get even more ideas once you start the process in earnest. I urge you to ask around and find a monument dealer that you can trust. It takes time to get this right, because the work is literally "cast in stone". If you have special artwork in mind, that will add to the scope of your effort. It took over a month to get me, the monument dealer and the quarry to get the design finalized. It was at least another month before the quarry finished the stone.

Good luck with this!

nonesuch

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2016, 09:17:19 AM »
My aunt was widowed quite young (in her forties, I think)  Later, she married her high school sweetheart.  She lived to be rather old, so she was married to him longer than her first husband. She was laid to rest in the veterans' cemetery where her second husband would be buried some years later.


daysofelijah

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Re: Headstone
« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2016, 06:05:19 PM »
My brother-in-law offered to buy the plot and hit me with the do you want a double or single plot? I couldn't even process that at the time so I guess I said double plot. When it came time to order the stone though I realized that I was not sure. I was only 37 when he died, and honestly I do have the desire to re-marry now 3 years later. So I went with a single headstone.

I make a hobby of adding records and photographing headstones for findagrave. I came across a situation where the first husband passed young and a double headstone was bought, but the wife remarried and must have chosen to be buried next to her second husband (in the same cemetery where her first husband was buried.) So first husband's double stone sits with an empty spot for her name. That made me sad. I had inscribed on dh's stone "Beloved husband, loving father".
Amy, mom to four (14,13,9,5)