Death

EXPLORING GRIEF AND LOSS LITERACY: SUPPORTING AND EMPOWERING SCHOOL COMMUNITIES

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Am thrilled to be offering a full-day of training on Feb. 1st for the Halton District School Board on “EXPLORING GRIEF AND LOSS LITERACY: SUPPORTING AND EMPOWERING SCHOOL COMMUNITIES”

Will be honoured to be present with so many professionals as we spend the day exploring: 

- Grief and Loss Literacy (related to dying, death and non-death losses)

- Stigma Related to Illness, Dying, Grief

- The Dialogue of Loss

- Support Across School Communities

- Promoting Capacity & Engagement

- Opportunities for Self-Care

Looking forward to sharing some brilliant resources!

YES, I WRITE ABOUT DEATH: ON THE WAYS PEOPLE RESPOND TO A “DEATH JOB” AND HOW I HANDLE IT

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"I tell them that it’s never my goal to glamorize death or tell people how they should or shouldn’t feel about death. I only hope my writing gives people permission to broach the topic."

Source: YES, I WRITE ABOUT DEATH: ON THE WAYS PEOPLE RESPOND TO A “DEATH JOB” AND HOW I HANDLE IT

 

Death cafes serve up life and death conversations. #DeathCafe

"Over a cup of coffee, a little cake — and sometimes beer — people meet to talk about death and fear of dying in the death cafe..."

Listen to this episode of The Current for more.

Talking About #Death Won’t Kill You. @Kathykm @TEDTalks #Death #Education #hpm

"An unconventional death educator with an equal parts wry and wise delivery style, Dr. Kathy Kortes-Miller is committed to showing her audience that talking about death and dying won’t kill you. Using stories and research, Kathy extends an invitation to view death as not a taboo subject - but rather a shared life experience. Audience members walk away with shifted perspectives and a deep understanding that talking about death, without knowing or needing all the “answers”, actually brings us closer to our loved ones than we ever imagined possible."

How To Support A Young Person Through Grief

“This early interaction with death is overwhelming, but a pivotal point for learning. This grief acts as a blueprint for not just how these young people process death, but their approach to the many challenges they will face in life.

If you are struggling to help a teenager with their grief, know that your concern is evidence of your care. There is nothing that can make this not awful, so don't make your aim to stop the tears, but rather to support them in what they need. Respecting their needs shows them that you believe in their ability to know what's best for themselves. You're doing good.”

Observing the Wish to #Die at #Home. #hpm

“We often hear from family members that they find great value in our Guide for Family Caregivers, detailed information on how to handle such common end-of-life symptoms as breathing problems, pain, changes in behavior and sleeplessness. The piece details several signs that may signal a loved one is transitioning from life to death, such as no appetite or urine output, and changes in breathing sounds and patterns.

We encourage people to be a calm presence, to hold the loved ones hand, to call in others who wish to be present, as well as call Hospice for support. Hearing is the final sense to go, so we encourage family members to continue speaking to their loved one, reassuring that everything is all right.

‘What we are trying to do is normalize what they are going through,’ says Joel. Death, after all, is not an aberration but a universal end we all one day meet. ‘We want the family members to know what the very end of life looks like and what they can do when the time comes. What can they do? Literally, just hold your loved one’s hand’.”

Cry, Heart, But Never Break: A Remarkable Illustrated Meditation on #Loss and #Life. @brainpickings

"Now comes a fine addition to the most intelligent and imaginative children’s books about making sense of death — the crowning jewel of them all, even, and not only because it bears what might be the most beautiful children’s book title ever conceived: Cry, Heart, But Never Break (public library) by beloved Danish children’s book author Glenn Ringtved and illustrator Charlotte Pardi, translated into English by Robert Moulthrop.

Although Ringtved is celebrated for his humorous and mischievous stories, this contemplative tale sprang from the depths of his own experience — when his mother was dying and he struggled to explain what was happening to his young children, she offered some words of comfort: “Cry, Heart, but never break.” It was the grandmother’s way of assuring the children that the profound sadness of loss is to be allowed rather than resisted, then folded into the wholeness of life, which continues to unfold". 

The importance of #honest #communication: Talking with #children about #death. #hpm

"Drawing from over 30 years of stories and wisdom from grieving children, teens, and adults, the Dear Dougy Podcast is opening up the conversation about dying, death, and bereavement. As humans, we all experience loss during our lives, but often find ourselves lost and unsure when it comes to navigating the grief that follows. Whether you’re grieving a death, or wanting to support someone who is, the Dear Dougy Podcast can help explore your questions about grief".

They Brought Cookies: For A New Widow, Empathy Eases Death's Pain

"So I'll tell you the positive effect and you know it already: empathy is pain's best antidote. It is, says Robert Burton in his astonishing Anatomy of Melancholy, 'as fire in Winter, shade in Summer, as sleep on the grass to them that are weary, meat and drink to him that is hungry or athirst.'

The pain doesn't go away; but somehow or other, empathy gives the pain meaning, and pain-with-meaning is bearable. I don't actually know how to say what the effect of empathy is, I can only say what it's like. Like magic".

How to Talk About Dying.

“Too many people we love had not died in the way they would choose. Too many survivors were left feeling depressed, guilty, uncertain whether they’d done the right thing.

The difference between a good death and a hard death often seemed to hinge essentially on whether someone’s wishes were expressed and respected. Whether they’d had a conversation about how they wanted to live toward the end…

We still need to transform the cultural norm from not talking about how we want to live at the end of life to talking about it. The real work to close the gap is not just for doctors and patients. It’s for mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, families and friends. We have to bring people to the kitchen table to talk with those they love to have the conversation. And to do this before there is a crisis. Not in the I.C.U.”

"I See Dead People". #Dreams and #Visions of the #Dying.

"Dr. Christopher W. Kerr is the Chief Medical Officer at The Center for Hospice and Palliative Care, where he has worked since 1999. His background in research has evolved from bench science towards the human experience of illness as witnessed from the bedside, specifically patients’ dreams and visions at the end of life. Although medically ignored, these near universal experiences often provide comfort and meaning as well as insight into the life led and the death anticipated".

Against #Grieving in Silence. ~Rachel Stephenson

"When loss enters our lives, understanding how to confront it can be difficult. Rachel Stephenson learned a valuable lesson after a difficult loss and shares her wisdom on what it means to grieve meaningfully.

Rachel is an educator, administrator, and writer. For the past 7 years, she has worked for The City University of New York (CUNY) designing and implementing innovative, high-performing programs focused on civic engagement, workforce development, and youth development for a range of inspiring CUNY students. Launching the CUNY Service Corps in 2013 is one of her proudest professional accomplishments. Rachel holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Nonfiction Writing from Columbia University’s School of the Arts.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community".

Meeting #Death with Words.

"In richer parts of the world, death is likely to arrive in a nursing home, or in a hospital—precisely where we most dread spending our dwindling hours. The exit from life, as Atul Gawande observes in his treatise “Being Mortal,” has become overly medicalized in recent decades, causing us to forget centuries of wisdom. We have ended up with a system that treats the body while neglecting its occupant. But the discontent is mounting, Gawande says: 'We’ve begun rejecting the institutionalized version of aging and death, but we’ve not yet established our new norm. We’re caught in a transitional phase'."

Quality of #Death. My Journey with Stage 4 Breast #Cancer.

"We shouldn’t be afraid to talk about what a good quality of death is while balancing a good quality of life. I believe a good quality of life relates more to the application of medical intervention or lack of medical intervention. For me, a good quality of death relates to the amount of grace and love that surrounds me. I am hopeful, it will fuel empowerment and strength as I face my death. I want to find grace and love in myself and the people sharing this journey with me".

Reframing Our Relationship to That We Don’t Control. #Death. ~ OnBeing

“ ‘Let death be what takes us,’ Dr. BJ Miller has written, ‘not a lack of imagination.’ As a palliative care physician, he brings a design sensibility to the matter of living until we die. And he’s largely redesigned his sense of own physical presence after an accident at college left him without both of his legs and part of one arm. He offers a transformative reframing on our imperfect bodies, the ways we move through the world, and all that we don’t control.”

When a child is dying, the hardest talk is worth having. #PedPC

"Conversations about the end of life are hard for most people. But they can be especially sensitive for parents guiding children through terminal illnesses. They often struggle to discuss death because they don’t want to abandon hope; children, too, can be reluctant to broach the subject.

But pediatric specialists say the failure to discuss death — with children who are old enough to understand the concept and who wish to have the conversation — can make it harder for all involved.

A conversation could help children who are brooding silently suffer less as they approach death. It would also ensure parents know more about children’s final wishes".

Facing life’s end with grace. #EOLC #HPM

"In the end, the more people are ready to have the talk, the more likely it is that the medical industry will offer care that accounts for the vast, nuanced, and fluid decision points facing patients who are short on time.

Dying, after all, is complicated, hard business, and dying well is more complicated, and harder".

There is no inevitability in life that we are less prepared for than #death. #HPM

"There is no inevitability in life that we are less prepared for than death. Where is our guidance for this universal event that every one us will face? Why don't we teach people how to die? Why don't we teach people how to live after someone they love has died? We need to change this. We need to equip people with the tools they will need to cope. This is part of what end of life doulas do. We talk about death, with the living and the dying".

Explaining Cremation to Kids.

"Of course, this is a tough concept for kids this age to comprehend but it's much worse to shield them from this ritual".