Catering to the needs of the dead may seem to put off most people. This is primarily because of the dark and gloomy disposition funeral professionals have. One must admit that being a mortician or embalmer is not your regular run-of-the mill, boast-material job in the world like a doctor or a politician. But being able to take care of the dead is something that is as noble as taking care of life.
A mortician makes sure that everything is well taken care of during the entire funeral process. This involves preparation before the service, the service proper, and even after the ceremonies are done. If you thought that there are no necessary KSAs (knowledge, skills, and attitude) needed to become a mortician/embalmer, think again.
Becoming an embalmer takes technical knowledge in order to execute embalming procedures properly. This is very important to make sure that the decedent’s body is well treated for the funeral service and for its eternal rest. Some may request embalming their loved ones first and then have them cremated after. Various states and local vicinities have specific regulations as to how extensive the educational attainment for morticians or embalmers should be. There are people who see apprenticeship as a better means to learn the art and science of embalming. But some colleges that specialize in this field offer two- to four-year formal education that encompass the following subjects: safety in handling chemicals, psychology, anatomy, reconstructive techniques (for the corpse), and embalming.
In embalming or handling dead bodies, you must have emotional, physical, and psychological stability. A firm grip on these aspects is very important if you really want to embalm for a living. The respect that you have for the living should be the same or even more for the dead because a dead body’s condition will depend on how you will treat it.
Scope of the Job
Being a mortician or an embalmer involves three processes: embalming, the funeral service, and cremation.
In embalming the body of a decedent, you should be able to know how to properly remove all the blood and introduce a preserving or embalming fluid through the veins. This solution slows down the decomposition process and restores the natural color of the skin. The overall procedure is important for the funeral service proper because family and friends will be viewing the decedent at a close range.
During the funeral service, you must also be involved in preparing everything that is needed. This makes you the funeral director. This means talking with the family for the eulogies, presentations, and songs that have to be readied. As funeral director, you should also take care of the flower arrangements and the needed transportation to the funeral site.
When the cremation of the decedent is requested, you as the mortician should be the one to fully facilitate the burning of the body. You are the one who will place the corpse in an incinerator and stay until the body turns to ash.
Being a mortician or embalmer is a profession that needs knowledge, dedication, and compassion. If you really want to care for the dead and make the decedent’s final rest a pleasant experience, then this is the job for you.