Write your obituary – death and dying


Your final writing assignment is this:

  1. Read the chapter on death and dying in your textbook.
  2. Write a 2-3 page paper about your experiences with death, what things you would like to happen before you die, what legacy you would like to leave in this world, what you believe happens after death, etc.
  3. Use one reference (not your textbook).
  4. Write your obituary (a separate page from your paper).  You can “die” at any point in the future. Include all pertinent information; make up the stuff that hasn’t happened yet. Marry who you want – accomplish what you want, work where you want, have the children and name them what you want…it’s your fantasy…If you don’t know what to include in the obituary, read some obituaries in a newspaper for ideas.

The obituary has a separate dropbox folder.

Yes, I know this is depressing.  I suspect, though, that you will find this assignment eye-opening and, ultimately, valuable.

Here is a poem that might help you think about what you want to write –

How Do You Live Your Dash?

by Linda Ellis
Linda’s Lyrics

I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning…to the end. He noted that first came her date of birth and spoke the following date with tears, But he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years (1953-2006).

For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth… And now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth. For it matters not, how much we own; the cars…the house…the cash. What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard… Are there things you’d like to change? For you never know how much time is left, that can still be rearranged. If we could just slow down enough to consider what’s true and real, and always try to understand the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger, and show appreciation more and love the people in our lives like we’ve never loved before. If we treat each other with respect, and more often wear a smile… Remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy’s being read with your life’s actions to rehash… Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your dash?