TAKE YOUR TIME: Funeral director Lisa Laversage of Nimbin pictured at her home office
TAKE YOUR TIME: Funeral director Lisa Laversage of Nimbin pictured at her home office Doug Eaton

Don’t give up your dead

"WHEN someone dies, don't pick up the phone, pick up the kettle," says Nimbin funeral celebrant Lisa Liversage.

Ms Liversage is passionate about death and dying and says there is no need to rush things once a person has died.

"Once you make that call you lose control," she said.

"There is a push to get things done quickly, it is a production line."

Instead, the family of the deceased should pause and think through what they would like to happen next. Are they ready to have the body removed from the home?

"The body can stay in the home for up to five days," Ms Liversage said.

"We give it to funeral directors to deal with, but you can be part of the death care process."

Ms Liversage, who has worked as a palliative care nurse, mortuary technician, forensic mortician, undertaker for the coroner and has qualifications in trauma and grief counselling, said the family could be involved in washing and dressing the deceased. By keeping the body at home longer the family were better able to grieve, she said.

"We need to look after our own, that is what we did 80 years ago. "Death is one of the most important parts of life. We are all going to die."

Cooling blankets could be used to extend the period of time a body should be kept in the home, she said.

Ms Liversage said most funeral directors were trained to not get emotionally involved, but she took the opposite view.

"You develop a personal relationship with the family, and I always get emotionally involved," she said.

"They are trusting you with their deceased one."

"I would like to change how things are done."

Ms Liversage opened Nimbin Funeral Services five months ago, and offers chemical-free funerals and eco-friendly embalming.



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