By: Lauren Thaler  |  Date: January 14th, 2013  |  Category: Death Defying Acts, News  |  Comments: 2 comments »

Everplans is a new resource for end-of-life planning, and I’m psyched to be working with the amazing Everplans team to create and organize editorial content that makes dealing with death not quite so difficult. Check out the site when you have a chance, especially if you know someone who could benefit from a less overwhelming approach to everything from estate planning to funeral costs. Below is a post I wrote for the Everplans blog last week.

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Remembering My Mother on My Birthday

When I was a kid, my mother would sneak into my bedroom the night before my birthday. She’d carefully set up little signs, banners and balloons all around my room so that the first thing I saw when I woke up would be her birthday wishes for me. I’d make my way into the bathroom and see that she’d replicated her festive display [...]

I Danced My Pants Off

By: Lauren Thaler  |  Date: August 23rd, 2011  |  Category: Death Defying Acts  |  Comments: 6 comments »

I threw a dance party on the night of my mom’s funeral.

Let me rephrase that: I didn’t plan to throw one, but on the night of my mom’s funeral, a dance party spontaneously erupted in my living room. Friends and family had come over earlier to pay their respects, and after the longest day of my entire life drew to a close, I pushed the furniture to the edge of the room, turned on portable Bose speakers and danced my pants off on my mother’s Oriental rug.

My remaining guests joined me. We danced to Akon, Jay-Z, Boyz II Men, Michael Jackson, Chromeo and we wrapped up the night with a compilation of 80’s hits.

When I woke up the following morning, surprised by the soreness I felt in my arms, my friend replied, “That’s probably because you were doing the worm last night during Karma Chameleon”.

Now, I understand my behavior isn’t [...]


By: Lauren Thaler  |  Date: August 16th, 2011  |  Category: Death Defying Acts  |  Comments: Say Something »

I vividly remember the first time I emailed two of my mother’s closest friends to start planning her funeral. It felt surreal – like I had temporarily floated above myself and was looking on as Lauren made decisions about pallbearers, service prayers and other funeral details. And it felt especially surreal because my mother was still alive.

At first, planning my mother’s funeral before her death felt unnatural and wrong. It signified the loss of hope. Defecting from Team Linda. Daughter disloyalty. The most depressing type of guilt out there.

But, the moment I realized asking Mom to have another sip of water or encouraging her to take a short walk was futile, my pragmatism took over. I couldn’t ignore what was just around the corner, even if I wasn’t ready to say the word yet.

In fact, the first email I sent didn’t even have the f-word in it. I believe I [...]