Compassion is a practice. It’ll never be a perfect practice. Intention is key. Introspection is paramount. And, self-care is vital.
“What’s that piece of furniture in the corner?” I ask, following a long period of not talking, trying to assess whether my client was truly interested in the news program playing or if he wanted to converse. “Is it a record player?” I point to the area behind the hospital bed, which has become a… Continue reading The “Lasts”
Your Values, Your Voice Making Decisions in Cases of Serious Illness A collaborative approach to medicine between practitioner and patient has not always been standard practice, let alone even possible. In their landmark “Awareness of Dying” research, Glaser and Strauss (1965) described the common philosophy of “closed awareness context,” meaning that details about a patient’s… Continue reading Your Values, Your Voice: Collaborative Care
As a presenter about end-of-life doula work, I have come to realize that guiding groups through workshops often mirrors direct work in the field. Whether it’s birth or death, people yearn for support and validation from a nonjudgmental listening ear. This goes for leading participants through visualizations and advance care planning, too. When an array… Continue reading Working Through Wishes
What struck me, following the first meeting of our grief group series, was realizing how you can scan a room, see faces, and assume people are okay. They look okay. They’re acting fine. They have friendly smiles and warm handshakes. And yet, once we got through introductions and took the conversation deeper, these seemingly “okay”… Continue reading New Year, Same Grief