Comments: Three Shovels of Dirt

You have all your Judaic facts straight, far as I can see.

A good friend will be doing this same thing tomorrow in South Florida, having lost his mother at the ripe old age of 93. Sad, but not tragic: it is the way things should work.

Our rabbi likens the filling in of the grave by family and friends to tucking a child into bed: You are tucking your loved one into the grave for his or her forever sleep. It's a powerful, touching analogy.

Posted by Elisson at October 6, 2009 10:25 PM

Elisson- OH I like that analogy.

Every time I do it... it just feels... right. It is the right thing to do.

Posted by bou at October 6, 2009 10:29 PM

Wow. Just wow... I like the sentiment tremendously.

Posted by Richmond at October 7, 2009 06:57 AM

Wow too! I think I want that at mine too.

Posted by patti at October 7, 2009 08:35 AM

That just sounds... lovely. Comforting. I wish we had done that for my parents; walking away from the grave site is one of the hardest things to do, but not if you 'put them to bed' yourself, I think.

I would want that as well.

Posted by Pam at October 7, 2009 08:50 AM

When my mom passed away, we buried her with the blanket from her bed. It had been my grandpa's and she slept with it over her every night. Now, I had tried to buy her a new one, that wasn't faded or falling apart, but no, that was the one she wanted and she told us she wanted to be buried with it.

So, after her service, my brothers and I tucked her in and off she went to her new adventure. It was a nice way to send her off.

Posted by Trudy at October 7, 2009 01:59 PM

The details of the send off are important. When Dad died, I don't know who picked out the suit he was buried in. I suspect it was Mom, at very bad time for thinking. So I did not say anything (although my oldest brother did).

At any rate, it seemed all wrong. For one thing, I think I saw him in a suit maybe once in his life. It wasn't his thing. For another, when he did brush up, Dad had good taste. That suit was all wrong, and he wouldn't have (pardon the phrase) been caught dead in it if he had had a say.

So sending him off like that - it seemed almost like it was someone else in his place. It still sort of feels that way after all these years! Rituals are important.

Posted by PeggyU at October 7, 2009 02:30 PM

I never heard of before such a tradition of honoring the dead, but it makes perfect sense to me. What better honor is there for friends and loved ones to give the deceased such a proper sendoff? I myself wouldn't hesitate if asked.

Posted by diamond dave at October 7, 2009 07:35 PM

Amen.

Posted by bx19 at October 8, 2009 04:10 PM