Why I Love What I Do

by Amy L. Silva Rigtrup

This week's episode of The Silva Lining was a pretty open discussion about being a funeral director and I was blessed with some great callers who asked some great questions.  

In a profession highly stereotyped for being morbid, sad and depressing, you hardly get to hear the positive things about being a funeral director. Granted, I do witness a lot of sadness and tragedy, but as with every thing in life - there is always another side.  

There is actually so much about my job that I love! I witness the best of humanity - the heartfelt testimonials of marriages, sometimes as long as 70 years; outpouring gestures of community support for the bereaved; healthy family dynamics filled with strength and character; and amazingly creative personalized tributes. 

A secret that I will share with you... When it comes to my own personal losses - close family, friends, acquaintances - I actually prefer being the funeral director. Not at all to say that funeral directors have an easier time with grief, but our ability to be able to help the people we know and love actually helps us to cope. I honestly feel helpless when I'm not involved with the funeral of a loved one because I'm so used to having an active role. It's hard to put into words the honor I feel when entrusted with the care of someone I know.

Most of all, I am grateful for being in a profession where I am reminded - every single day - about the beauty and unpredictability of life. To slow down and appreciate everyone that I love.

This week I was honored to be named one of the 2015 Outstanding Women of Family Business by the Warren Group and Massachusetts Family Business Magazine. The pride I feel for being part of a business founded in 1890 by my great grandfather is massive. In this world dominated by corporations, it is truly a challenge to maintain a family business and I am grateful for the support provided by the FBA. 

I was joined today in the studio with WSAR's General Sales Manager, Sue Nedar. Sue and I have known each other for a while from our mutual love and involvement in community theatre. She is the reason that The Silva Lining came to be. When I was very pregnant with my third child, she called me with her "crazy" idea that I should talk about funeral related topics on the radio show. Six months into it, I can attest that her idea was not crazy and that I've absolutely come to love doing this show. Thank you Sue. 

The Silva Lining is thankful for our wonderful sponsors:

St. Anthony of Padua Credit Union - We are proud to be sponsored by such an incredible bank, that in an age of conglomerate banks treating people like numbers, maintains a relationship with its members based on trust, friendly service and loyalty. With competitive rates for savings accounts and various loans, St. Anthony of Padua can handle all of your financial needs. Convenient online banking and more information at www.stanthonyofpaduafcu.com

White's of Westport - Expert and personal service for all of your event/catering needs - from funeral repasts to weddings and parties, White's will handle every detail. Their newly renovated Galley Grille provides live music on the weekends - click here for menu and events. Don't miss the Paul McCartney & Wings Tribute Band coming to White's on July 31st click here for tickets and more info!  whitesofwestport.com