The Thoughts of Kindness from the Undertaker


My mother’s life had ended well, it’d given me the opportunity, to get in contact with the undertakers, Chang, he’s always in smiles, greeting his clients, dressed in a white shirt, with a pair of black slacks, because this work doesn’t have any breaks, the workers needed to be on call 24/7, and so, there was, the black rings around his eyes, symbolizing the hard work of his profession.

Several times he’d come over to help us fold the lotuses, we’d invited him to dine with us, and we’d all curiously inquired, “Chang, working in this industry, you must not be, afraid of ghosts then!”, he’d flashed his matter-of-fact smile, said with ease, “of course I’m afraid, but, I have that goodness of thought inside, and managed, to connect with others using the good natured ways.”

not my photo…

“As I’d just started working, in order to get my guts stronger, the company had assigned me to work in the mortuary of the hospitals, to offer the foods for the deceased.  Other than those who’d passed because of illnesses, there were also those, who’d died in accidents.  One day, they’d taken a young man who’d died in a car accident, he was very well-built.  In the midnight hours, as I’d felt that I was being shaken in my sleep, then, I’d dreamed about that young man who’d died, telling me that he’d torn up his clothes, and felt hungry all the time.  Back then, we’d been given a set amount of money to buy the foods to offer to the deceased, right at the moment after I woke, I’d offered the incense and told the young man, “I’d already told your younger sister, you will have new clothes soon, and, I’d bought more foods for you guys myself, but, it’s only for one day, please, don’t bug me at night!”, it was odd too, from that day on, I’d had no troubles sleeping at night.

As we’d heard Chang told the stories, we’d wanted more, and he’d, continued, “Before the burials, I’d put the makeup on the deceased, get the deceased to look good, and there was a general, because of the meds he was on before he’d died, his skin was, severely damaged, we couldn’t just, put the make up on him to make him look well.  I’d torn his face off completely, then, I’d, put the makeup on the face part, by part, his family saw and felt warm, but, all of his subordinates suspected that it wasn’t, their superior, kept asking me if I’d taken out the wrong body”.

not my photo still…

In the end, he’d told, that working in this industry, he’d not focused on the fames or the fortunes, only hoped he could help the families, to fill up this last passage of life with gratitude, and no regrets.  Chang’s words, I felt such a strong ring to, because my mother’s death, it’d taught me about loving more, and it’s made me, cherish everybody I have around me now too.

So, this, is the kind thoughts of the undertaker, and, it is not an easy job, because you work in a place, where there are only the deceased, and, there are many ways your clients may have died, and, it would be very difficult, to not get too into their life stories, when it’d become, a bit too difficult, to separate oneself from the job.


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