We all need balance in our lives between the seriousness of life, work, and play. What do you enjoy most in life? Walking and talking, intentional connecting in Circles, painting and collaging, traveling, reading, and exploring the mysteries of life.
Spotlight Corner by Bonnie McKeegan
Bonnie interviewed volunteer End-of-Life Doula Sushila Mertens to learn more about her perspectives on death, burial, and her monthly Death Conversations group.
What has death and dying taught you?
My experience with death in homes has shown me how sacred the passage is and how death opens a space for us to be intimately connected with the living and how we want to live.
· You know a lot about burial options and green burial in particular. What do you want people to understand when it comes to the disposition of our bodies after death?
There are good reasons to follow disposition laws and more legal choices now for how we dispose of dead bodies. Do your research. We can take back our part in the life cycle and feed other life forms in the most natural way.
· When it comes to talking about death, grief, and loss, what wisdom or advice can you share with us? No one escapes death so let’s explore it and learn from those who go before us. What is important at the end of each life? A hug, listening and sitting together in silence, tears, and laughter are more helpful for allowing grief than cliches, avoidance, or advice on how to get over it.
· What kinds of things do you talk about in your monthly Death Conversations?
It’s interesting that death conversations are a lot about living. What life experiences led us to our beliefs around death. What are practical actions we can take now to have a more peaceful ending and have less chaos for our families. What death rituals/memorials have we experienced and which ones would we choose? After we explore one or two group questions, we explore whatever death topic comes up.
Social Worker/Psychotherapist/Private Practice Coach