Today we called up the priest who married me and my husband about 1.5 years ago (we are Hindu).
It seems that the priests who do weddings etc. do not do last rites. So he had us call a special funeral priest (I joked with my husband that maybe it was like medicine and he had to do a special funeral fellowship). The funeral priest told us he doesn’t make arrangements until the person dies, because once somebody’s doctor told him for sure that he had only days, and he went into a coma and lingered another 1.5 months. I joked that he must have been quite disappointed as he had to wait for the funeral fee. My husband asked the priest if he should purchase puja supplies–the priest told him no, that you should not make that sort of preparation until someone actually passes. That seemed awfully impractical to me and then I realized that traditions are all about symbolism, not pragmatism.
I am glad I have my husband. I’ve had difficulty making these calls. That’s why I joke about them.
God knows how much longer. I would not have thought my dad would have been here this long. I hope he doesn’t feel he has unfinished business or something. I have told him many times we’d be fine and to go when he is ready and–as he always told me–to phone when he gets there, if he can, and if he can’t then no big deal. I have held his hand and told him I loved him. I’ve told him I have to first raise my daughter and that I have much work to do here on Earth, so it may be a while until I join him–but that I will come and be with him someday.