Vintage Embalming Tools
On my first day as a Mortician’s Apprentice I had the honor- and I consider it that- to do the prep work for an embalming.
That was also the first day I set a blade against human flesh and made an incision.
You might be wondering, what was she thinking? What does anyone think when they’re in that position?
I was concentrating on not ‘hurting’ the person I was going to embalm ( yes, seriously ) and my second thought was, ‘ I am SO against the death penalty from now on.’
I had one feeling and one simple thought at that precise moment. I remember them distinctly almost 18 years later.
Ancient Egyptian Embalming Tools
Do you know how some kids are into dinosaurs? Cartoon characters? They immerse themselves into those worlds.
For me at age 10, it was all things dealing with Ancient Egypt and specifically with Mummies and the God of Embalming Anubis. I wanted to make those mummies.
I wanted to wear the mask and do the Opening of The Mouth Ceremony. I wanted to wrap the bodies with strips of linen in intricate patterns. I wanted to be involved with each step and the ritual.
Even if the reality was it smelled bad and knowing what I know now about what heat does to a body- I can see why the embalmers wore masks and burned a lot of incense-but even as a child had I been told that, it wouldn’t have mattered.
That’s how devoted I was to my goal of making mummies one day.
Opening Of The Mouth Ceremony
In the end though, I didn’t get to create a mummy but I was ok with that. I had a goal and I made it- sort of.
My first thoughts though upon reaching that goal- that moment when I carved that small incision onto a human body and entered the House of Anubis- wasn’t about Ancient Egypt and Mummies.
However, and here is the big HOWEVER- had I not wanted to create mummies I never would have had one of the most amazing adventures in my life. It’s just that I still wish for the part of me that arrived this place had acknowledged the person in me whose idea this was all along.
Photo A.M. Moscoso
Seattle, Washington USA
Daily Prompt: Carve