In most cases, death is not an emergency. There is no need to do anything at all other than sit quietly with the deceased…. for many hours. It can be helpful to remind them that they have died and that they are loved.
Embalming is not necessary or required by law and is quite toxic for the environment. A body can be kept easily at home, or a place of worship, simply by rotating ice packs every few hours, and keeping the room as cold as possible until the funeral and subsequent burial or cremation.
Caring for a body at home, or in the hospital or nursing home is perfectly acceptable. We offer assistance to family and friends with preparing a body, ritual washing, and dressing after death in preparation for visitation and lying in.
The intimacy involved with caring for your loved one after death may bring a level of reality and acceptance that is unexpected. The very sacred act of continuing care is an expression of love and appreciation…. of which there can never be too much. And the extended time to process the loss may be very beneficial for family and friends.