EOLPodcast, Grief, Spirituality

Ep. 266 Leave Your Light On: The Life and Afterlife of Ryder Buck with Shelley Buck and Kathy Curtis

Learn about the journey of a remarkable young musician through cancer, death and the afterlife and how he continues to inspire people.

My guests Shelley Buck and Kathy Curtis are the co-authors of the book Leave Your Light On, which details the journey of Shelley’s son Ryder through cancer and his subsequent death in a terrible accident. They discuss the process of writing this book as a healing practice for grief, the spiritual transformation experienced by Ryder after his cancer diagnosis, and how people around the world have been inspired by his story both before and after his death. They have turned a tragic story into transcendence that lights the way for all of us who are feeling lost in the darkness right now. Learn more at these websites:

www.ryderbuckmusic.com and www.kathycurtisink.com

Get the book Leave Your Light On here

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • How writing can help us heal grief, illness and loss
  • Ryder’s story and how music became a medium for him to share his message with the world
  • How his cancer journey accelerated Ryder’s spiritual growth
  • The challenges of being a mother to a young adult facing cancer and wanting his independence
  • How Shelley negotiated being “cancer mom” and also caring for her two younger sons at the same time
  • The amazing and synchronistic ways Ryder has communicated since his death and how those experiences have helped his parents with their grief
  • Tips for using writing as a healing medium
  • Three mantras for navigating these times of darkness from songs Ryder wrote or inspired

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Register for FREE Level 1 Doula Training here
  • Register for Certified End-of-Life Doula Training here
  • Find Ryder Buck’s music here
  • Get the book Leave Your Light On here
  • Gia’s song for Ryder: Ryde This WaveListen here
  • Song from Frozen 2: The Next Right ThingListen here
  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 265 Finding Hope in Difficult Times

Learn how finding the goodness of life can give you hope for our current situation.

In today’s solo episode I share some thoughts about the hopelessness many of us are feeling right now as we deal with unimaginable crisis and loss here on planet Earth. I also talk about how important hope is for our survival, how it is misused at times in medicine (though with good intention) to lure patients into futile treatments, and where terminal patients can find realistic hope. All of this can inform us how to move past our own feelings of hopelessness into a more positive state of HOPE.

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • Facing up to our current challenges
  • How I used a ritual to help me through my own sadness
  • How Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, represents the perfect time to let go and start with a clean slate
  • Why Autumn reminds us of the cycle of life and impermanence
  • The difference between “false hope” and “realistic hope”
  • How false hope is often used in medical settings
  • Why we need to move past our false hopes and embrace realistic hope right now
  • Where terminal patients can find realistic hope (and we can too)
  • How to find hope in the “goodness” of life

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu, especially my newest Patrons: Eileen Manglass and Sandy Jane Stacy. Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast, Grief

Ep. 264 Grief 2 Growth: Loss, Consciousness, and Overcoming Racism with Brian Smith

Learn how grief and loss can be the fuel for spiritual growth.

My guest Brian Smith is a certified life coach and grief guide who suffered his own grief experience after the tragic death of his daughter. Through his personal journey of navigating grief he discovered techniques for surviving loss that led to writing the book: Grief 2 Growth: Planted, Not Buried and creating the Grief 2 Growth Podcast. He shares the wisdom he has learned and how dealing with grief can help us grow spiritually as individuals and as a community. Learn more at his website:

www.grief2growth.com

Get Brian’s book here

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • How Brian overcame his severe fear of death
  • The process of grief and how it varies for everyone
  • Guilt after the death of loved one
  • How Brian works with people who are grieving
  • Why some people fear that making progress through grief will dishonor their loved one
  • How toxic religious beliefs can harm our experience of grief
  • Brian’s perception of the afterlife based on reason and evidence
  • What “planted, not buried” means
  • How grief work is an essential component for overcoming racism in society

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Special Episode: Vigil for Overcoming Fear

On the ninth of each month we have been called to hold space in our communities on life, death and transformation by ObservetheNinth.org. Today’s vigil will hold space for love and compassion for all of humankind and for the planet itself. May it bring you peace and comfort.

Vigil for Overcoming Fear
EOLPodcast, Grief

Ep. 263 Speaking Grief: A Film to Help Us Get Better at Grief with Lindsey Whissel Fenton

Learn about a beautiful film and online initiative that teach our grief-avoidant society how to be in touch with grief and how to support those who are grieving.

My guest Lindsey Whissel Fenton is a film producer and Emmy award-winning storyteller who is passionate about using public media to build empathy. She produced, directed and wrote the documentary “Speaking Grief” and contributes to the initiative by the same name with a desire to explore the reality of grief and create a more grief-aware society. Learn more at the websites:

www.speakinggrief.org

www.lindseywhisselfenton.com

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • How Lindsey became inspired to create a documentary about grief
  • Why Speaking Grief is important right now in light of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Why we tend to avoid the topic of grief and the harm that causes
  • How to be with people who are grieving
  • The diverse range of grief experiences and why all grievers need to be validated
  • The resources available on the Speaking Grief website:
    • Understanding grief
    • Supporting grief
    • Stories of grief
    • Grief experts
  • Where to view the film
  • How to arrange a screening for a discussion group

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 262 Vital Decisions: Innovations for Advance Care Planning with Tracy Brubaker

Learn how an innovative company is contracting with insurers to educate patients about decision-making around advanced illnesses.

My guest Tracy Brubaker is the COO of Vital Decisions, a company founded by Dr. Jessica Zitter to focus on changing the way people with advanced illness receive care by encouraging advance care planning. She shares how Vital Decisions contracts with insurers to provide education and counseling to their clients and the impact they are having on end-of-life care. Learn more about Vital Decisions at the website:

www.vitaldecisions.net

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • What inspired the creation of Vital Decisions
  • How Vital Decisions works with insurers to educate their clients and guide them through advance care planning at no cost to the patient
  • Why Vital Decisions chooses Masters level clinicians as their team members
  • How team members initiate and structure conversations about end-of-life issues
  • The two most common motivations for people to decide to complete their advance directives
  • 60-70% of Vital Decisions clients complete their paperwork and have conversations with the important people in their lives
  • Benefits to patients and insurers: fewer inpatient and ER visits, less unwanted aggressive treatment, and lower costs at end of life
  • How the My Living Voice program helps healthy individuals easily complete an advance directive online at no cost
  • How the Guided Living Voice program educates patients and their families about palliative care

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 261 Near-Death Experiences and Healthcare: Bridging the “Gap of Care” with Heidi Walsh and Lilia Samoilo

Learn how a “gap of care” exists for patients who have near-death experiences in the hospital that are not validated or believed.

My two guests, Heidi Walsh and Lilia Samoilo worked together on a project to gather stories of near-death experiencers and how they were perceived and treated by the healthcare system after their extraordinary NDE’s. Lilia is an NDE educator who herself has experienced multiple NDE’s and Heidi is the managing editor for Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics: A Journal of Qualitative Research. They discuss the findings of the symposium they created and why more education about NDE’s is needed for healthcare practitioners.

Learn more about the symposium here.

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • The definition of a near-death experience
  • Why patient stories are helpful in medicine and bioethics
  • What is the “gap of care” for NDE patients in healthcare settings and how does it harm them
  • Why this “gap of care” is a bioethical issue that should be addressed
  • Statistics show that 20% of resuscitated patients have had an NDE but only 2% self-report the experience
  • How to validate a patient’s experience even if you don’t believe it is possible
  • How the Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics Journal came to create a symposium on NDE’s
  • Why combat veterans who have had NDE’s are harmed by lack of validation for their experience
  • Why it is essential that medical providers be trained to recognize and have conversations about NDE’s in order to bridge the gap of care for patients
  • How the NDE Symposium could be used for teaching purposes but first must be released to open access and how Heidi and Lilia are working to raise money for that
  • Where to get additional resources (see the links below)

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • September Workshop with Suzanne O’Brien (and Dr. Wyatt): Top Lessons Learned from Those at the End of Life: How to be Resilient in Difficult Times
  • Access free articles from the NIB Journal here
  • Donate to support the open access of the symposium here
  • NDE resources from the International Association for Near Death Studies (IANDS)
  • Resources for veterans with NDE’s
  • IANDS NDE Radio with Lee Witting (I was a guest!)
  • Contact Heidi Walsh: narrativebioethics@gmail.com
  • Contact Lilia Samoilo: NDE-goc@outlook.com
  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast, Spirituality

Ep. 260 How to be Resilient in Difficult Times with Suzanne B. O’Brien RN

Learn how the lessons learned from patients at the end of life can help us navigate the challenges confronting us right now.

This episode features a conversation with Suzanne B. O’Brien RN, founder of the International Doulagivers Institute as we discuss the many lessons we have each learned from our work with patients at the end of life and how they have helped us grow spiritually. Both of us experienced a profound transformation in our lives because of the wisdom shared by our patients and now benefit from greater resilience that helps us navigate difficult times. As we all face unprecedented challenges due to the global pandemic and economic crisis, now is the right time for everyone to learn these lessons and find greater hope and joy in the small moments of life.

Learn about our upcoming workshop

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • How Suzanne and I became inspired to create a workshop together
  • Why these lessons from the end of life are so important right now
  • How we each feel that our painful life experiences have been the key to spiritual growth
  • The recognition that we are all connected in consciousness
  • Life has a greater meaning than we realize
  • Why unconditional love is the only thing that really matters in life
  • How forgiveness deepens our ability to love but is not commonly taught
  • How our expanded consciousness can help us find our true purpose in life and live authentically
  • How spiritual growth inspires us to be of service to others

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Get 7 Lessons for Living from the Dying here
  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu, especially my newest Patrons: Stine Relsted. Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast, Spirituality

Ep. 259 Crisis Fatigue: How Integral Consciousness Can Help Us Accept One Another

Learn how understanding the integral model can help us cope with crisis and reduce conflict with our fellow humans.

In this solo episode I share some concepts based on Ken Wilber’s integral theory to help us understand why we are at a breaking point in our fragmented society right now. We will look at some new ways of viewing the world and tips for getting through our current crises by strengthening our core values, discerning the truth, and maximizing our ability to make a difference in the world without becoming exhausted.

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • Three conflicting perspectives on life and the world that are fragmenting our society
    • Traditional – “The Good”
    • Rational – “The True”
    • Pluralistic – “The Beautiful”
  • The positive and negative aspects of each perspective
  • Why each perspective dislikes and distrusts the other two perspectives
  • How the Integral Perspective transcends and includes each of the other three perspectives (The Good, The True, and The Beautiful)
  • Tips for maintaining an Integral Perspective
    • Focus on your core values (what really matters), strengthen them and learn to return to your core during times of stress
    • Find the truth by learning to listen to your intuition
    • Care for yourself and others by learning to prioritize your efforts
    • Manage your fear and anger
    • Take actions that are clear, focused, impactful, vetted
    • Preserve your energy for the long haul
  • How Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs can help you decide where to put your energy
  • Why we are susceptible to conspiracy theories during times of great stress

Links mentioned in this episode:

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu, especially my newest Patrons: Debi Schauss. Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Special Episode: Vigil for Times of Uncertainty

On the ninth of each month we have been called to hold space in our communities on life, death and transformation by ObservetheNinth.org. Today’s vigil will hold space for love and compassion for all of humankind and for the planet itself. May it bring you peace and comfort.

Vigil for Times of Uncertainty

EOLPodcast, Hospice

Ep. 258 The Heart of Hospice: Supporting the End-of-Life Journey with Helen Bauer and Jerry Fenter

Learn about the issues facing hospice care in the US and how the “heart” of hospice is essential for end-of-life care.

My guests today, Helen Bauer RN and Jerry Fenter, are the hosts of the popular podcast The Heart of Hospice. Having worked as a hospice nurse and hospice chaplain, these two are passionate about offering education and support to anyone who needs information about end-of-life care. Their projects include advance care planning, resources for professional and personal caregivers, and consultations with hospices about staff education. Learn more about their work at their website:

www.theheartofhospice.com

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • Why Helen and Jerry started The Heart of Hospice
  • The challenge of educating the public and medical professionals about the benefits of hospice care
  • How COVID-19 is impacting hospice care right now
  • Other difficulties facing hospice care in the US
  • Reasons to be hopeful about the future of hospice
  • Self-care tips for professional and personal caregivers
  • The importance of memorial services for hospice staff to process grief
  • Resources available from their website

POEM: Compassion by Miller Williams

"Have compassion for everyone you meet 
even if they don’t want it. What seems conceit, 
bad manners or cynicism is always a sign 
of things no ears have heard, no eyes have seen. 
You do not know what wars are going on 
down there where the spirit meets the bone.”

From -  Healing the Divide: Poems of Kindness and Connection - 
edited by James Crews

Links mentioned in this episode:

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 257 Coping with Unexpected Change in an Uncertain World

Learn how to build resiliency to better cope with the overwhelming changes taking place in the world right now.

In this solo episode I talk about the necessity of change in life and what happens when the amount of change we are forced to deal with exceeds our capacity to manage it. I share some thoughts about the consequences of “change fatigue” and how to increase our resiliency to better deal with and grow from the experience of unexpected and unwanted change.

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • Why we resist change
  • Why change is essential for growth
  • The “Bucket Theory” of change
  • The consequences of “change fatigue”
  • The 6 building blocks of resilience:
    • Values and beliefs
    • Meaning and purpose
    • Mindset
    • Relationships
    • Physical health
    • Emotional health
  • Tips for strengthening your own “building blocks”
  • Lessons from the dying for coping with change

What the caterpillar calls the end of the world …

the master calls a butterfly.”

– Richard Bach

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • IANDS 2020 Virtual Conference
  • Get my book here7 Lessons for Living from the Dying
  • Subscribe to this podcast on AppleGoogleSpotifyiHeart RadioStitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 256 The Live Well Die Well Tour: Death Education Meets the Road with Kimberly Paul

Learn the inside story of this groundbreaking tour across America to promote conversations about death and dying.

My guest Kimberly Paul last appeared on End-of-Life University 2 years ago as she was preparing to embark on a courageous adventure: traveling across the US in an RV and teaching and talking about death and dying with people she met along the way. Today she returns to the podcast to share her inside stories of the Live Well Die Well Tour and the lessons she learned on her extraordinary journey. She is also the host of Death by Design Podcast and the author of the book Bridging the Gap: Life Lessons from the Dying. Learn more at her website:

www.deathbydesign.com

Listen here:

The Live Well Die Well Tour with Kimberly Paul

This episode includes:

  • What inspired Kimberly to create the Live Well Die Well Tour
  • How she planned and prepared for her journey
  • The ups and downs of a 2-year road trip in an RV
  • Stories of Kimberly’s memorable experiences on the journey (including a special tow truck driver)
  • How COVID-19 impacted her journey
  • How she hopes to use the stories she’s gathered from across the country to inform Congress about changes needed to improve end-of-life care in the US
  • What’s next for Kimberly in her quest to make a difference in how we approach death and dying

Links mentioned in this episode:

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 255 What the Dying Teach Us About the Afterlife with Debra Diamond PhD

Learn what happens in the non-physical realm during the dying process according to a death doula and psychic medium.

My guest Debra Diamond is a former Wall Street money manager who left her career to pursue a life of service as a medical intuitive and psychic medium. She shares how she works with hospice patients as a death doula and what she has learned from them about the dying process and after-death experiences. Debra is the author of the book Diary of a Death Doula: 25 Lessons the Dying Teach Us About the Afterlife. Learn more at her website:

www.debradiamondauthor.com

Listen here:

What the Dying Teach Us About the Afterlife

This episode includes:

  • How Debra went from being a money manager to a medium and death doula
  • Why both the body and the soul need to be ready for death to occur
  • How dying patients “journey” to non-physical realms, including memories of the past, before they die
  • Medical science cannot measure or observe the non-physical realm and therefore tends to reject it
  • Clairsentience (receiving spiritual information through feelings) is common in our Western society, though most people don’t recognize it
  • How awareness of the non-physical realm can help with fear of death
  • Non-spiritual experiences are ineffable because our language doesn’t have the words to explain them
  • Tips for caring for the dying at the very end of life:
    • touch from a stranger or healthcare worker may not be helpful and may interrupt their process
    • be careful with what is said in front of dying patient
    • be quiet and meditative in their presence
    • have patient’s personal mementos in the room (photos, plants)
    • allow times of solitude for the patient
  • We can be “with” our loved ones in the non-physical realm even when we can’t be together in the same room when they are dying

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Get Debra’s book here: Diary of a Death Doula: 25 Lessons the Dying Teach Us About the Afterlife
  • View Debra’s YouTube channel here
  • Vigil for Global Compassion
  • Subscribe to this podcast on Apple, Google, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Stitcher Radio
  • Check out the Series I’ve recorded in the past here
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu, especially my newest Patrons: Grace Lawrence, Arlene Radasky, Kelli Lyles, and Rafael Babilonia. Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Special Episode: Vigil for Global Compassion

On the ninth of each month we have been called to hold space in our communities on life, death and transformation by ObservetheNinth.org. Today’s vigil will hold space for love and compassion for all of humankind and for the planet itself. May it bring you peace and comfort.

Vigil for Global Compassion
EOLPodcast, Spirituality

Ep.254 A Call for Greater Kindness in a Suffering World

Three steps for increasing your capacity for kindness in a world that is polarized, divided, and suffering right now.

In this episode I’ll share some poems, stories and philosophical musings about our polarized world, which is filled with suffering, and how we can rise above our difference and our pain to show compassion and kindness to one another.

Listen here:

Featured poem from this episode:

SMALL KINDNESSES 

by Danusha Laméris 

I’ve been thinking about the way, when you walk 

down a crowded aisle, people pull in their legs 

to let you by. Or how strangers still say “bless you” 

when someone sneezes, a leftover from the Bubonic plague. “Don’t die,” we are saying.

And sometimes, when you spill lemons 

from your grocery bag, someone else will help you 

pick them up. Mostly, we don’t want to harm each other. 

We want to be handed our cup of coffee hot, 

and to say thank you to the person handing it. To smile 

at them and for them to smile back. 

For the waitress

 to call us honey when she sets down the bowl of clam chowder, 

and for the driver in the red pick-up truck to let us pass. 

We have so little of each other, now. So far 

from tribe and fire. Only these brief moments of exchange. 

What if they are the true dwelling of the holy, these 

fleeting temples we make together when we say, “Here, 

have my seat,” “Go ahead—you first,” “I like your hat.””

— from Healing the Divide: Poems of Kindness and Connection by James Crews, Ted Kooser

Links from this episode:

  • Get the poetry book here: Healing the Divide: Poems of Kindness and Connection
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast

Ep. 253 Natural Birth, Natural Death: Healing our Broken Medical System with Nathan Riley MD

Learn how honoring the sacredness of birth and death are key to healing the problems in our medical system.

My guest Dr. Nathan Riley specializes in both obstetrics and hospice and palliative care. He’ll share insights from his work at the beginning and the end of life and how the medical system fails to honor the sacredness of these two passages. We will discuss what needs to change in the medical system in order to heal disparities in medicine and honor natural birth and death. Learn more about Nathan’s podcast:

www.obgynowino.com

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • How Nathan was inspired by the work of Drs. Paul Farmer and Albert Schweitzer
  • Death and birth are equally mysterious and both are often taboo subjects in our society
  • Death and birth are both vulnerable times of life and are pathologized and medicalized by the healthcare system
  • Reframing death as the beginning of something new and expanded
  • The problem with doctors’ focus on “the good outcome” rather than on meeting the needs of the patient in the moment
  • What goes wrong during medical training that leads doctors away from the sacredness of medicine
  • Slowing down, listening and empathy are essential steps for healing the medical system and improving medical care
  • Why doctors fear emotional closeness with patients
  • Implicit bias and health disparities in medicine
  • Why we must look within ourselves first if we want to eradicate racism in the systems where we work

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Books by Victoria Sweet MD: Slow Medicine and God’s Hotel
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast, Grief

Ep. 252 Trauma, Grief and Resilience for Children in 2020 with Linda Goldman

Learn tips and resources for helping children deal with grief during this unique time in history.

My guest Linda Goldman is a grief therapist, counselor and teacher who does trainings on children’s grief and trauma and working with LGBT youth. She shares insights and resources for helping children who are dealing with grief and trauma due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the recent protests and riots over police brutality. Linda was a frequent consultant and thought leader for programs responding to the impact of 9/11 on children and sees this current unprecedented time in our history as an opportunity for post-traumatic growth for both children and adults. Learn more about her work at her website:

www.grievingchildren.net

Download FREE ebook for children (includes memory workbook):

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • How current experiences with COVID-19 and racial unrest can be opportunities for teaching children about healthy behaviors, compassion and kindness
  • The positive and negative aspects of media and internet for children at this time
  • The physical, mental and emotional consequences of repressed grief
  • How children grieve differently than adults and what they need from adults to cope with grief:
    • Honor feelings
    • Provide a safe haven
    • Mentorship
  • Resources for helping children with grief:
    • Play as a form of emotional expression
    • Books to read together
    • Sesame Street videos
    • Memory book or journal
    • Letter writing
    • List top 5 worries
    • “Linking objects” to maintain sense of connection with loved one
    • Support group
  • Attributes of a resilient child:
    • Proactive behavior
    • Creativity
    • Empathy
    • Communication skills
    • Optimism
    • Perseverance
    • Gratefulness

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Get Linda’s book hereLife and Loss: A Guide to Help Grieving Children
  • View Linda’s other books here
  • Download FREE children’s book here: Children Also Grieve
  • Sesame Street videos
  • Love Over Fear Story Page
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu! Your contributions make all the difference!

EOLPodcast, Spirituality

BONUS 15: Love Over Fear – Stories for Precarious Times

Welcome to this weekly bonus series of brief stories designed to touch your heart and offer you comfort, joy, laughter, and inspiration as we face uncertain times together! Remember always to choose LOVE over fear!

Story 15: You’re Already There

You’re Already There

Featured Poem:

Journey by David Whyte

Above the mountains
the geese turn into
the light again

Painting their
black silhouettes
on an open sky.

Sometimes everything
has to be
inscribed across
the heavens

so you can find
the one line
already written
inside you.

Sometimes it takes
a great sky
to find that

first, bright
and indescribable
wedge of freedom
in your own heart.

Sometimes with
the bones of the black
sticks left when the fire
has gone out

someone has written
something new
in the ashes of your life.

You are not leaving.
Even as the light fades quickly now,
you are arriving.

EOLPodcast

Ep. 251 Insights Into the Experience of Dying with Jennie Dear

Learn about current research into the experience of dying as a physical, emotional and spiritual process.

My guest Jennie Dear, who has been a journalist, English professor and hospice volunteer, was curious about the question “what does it feel like to die?” so she conducted her own research project. After interviewing doctors, nurses, psychologists, and other experts about the passage between diagnosis and death, she wrote a book (What Does it Feel Like to Die?) to share the hopeful insights she gained. She discusses what she learned from that project and what most people don’t know and need to know about the dying process. Learn more about her work at the website:

www.jenniedear.com

Listen here:

This episode includes:

  • Why and how Jennie wrote this book
  • How knowing about the physical process of dying can help people prepare better for the end of life
  • Why some dying patients’ pain is not alleviated
    • Fear of opioid abuse
    • Other untreated symptoms
    • Mental/emotional suffering of the dying process
  • Neuroscience experiments with patients in a vegetative state show patients are more aware than they appear to be
  • How do we know that “hearing is the last sense to go” for a dying patient
  • The 4 trajectories of dying (according to Dr. Joanne Lynn) and why it’s helpful to understand them
    • Sudden death
    • Terminal illness
    • Chronic illness
    • Frailty
  • Most common reasons for choosing medical aid in dying:
    • Fear of pain
    • Not wanting to be a burden to family
    • Not wanting to prolong the dying process

Links mentioned in this episode:

  • Course: Racism in Death Care – Confronting Bias, Ignorance and Prejudice taught by Joel Anthony and Anita Grant
  • Get Jennie’s book here: What Does it Feel Like to Die?
  • Get Karen’s book here: 7 Lessons for Living from the Dying
  • Dr. Joanne Lynn discusses 3 Trajectories of Death – video
  • The Five Trajectories pdf by Jennifer Moore Ballentine
  • Jennie’s YouTube video
  • Join the team at Patreon.com/eolu and get access to the EOLU mug“Mind if we talk about death?” (only Patrons can purchase it). PLUS get our new bonuses: the monthly EOL News Update, movie reviews from 2 Doctors and a Movie, and automatic access to A Year of Reading Dangerously!

If you enjoy this content please share it with others and consider leaving a review on iTunes! Thanks again to all supporters on my page at Patreon.com/eolu, especially my newest Patron: Heather Capuano. Your contributions make all the difference!