Are you facing a terminal diagnosis or caring for someone who is? Are you unsure what to do next?
Are there conversations you want to have or actions you want to take but you are not sure how your loved ones will react?
Do you wish you had someone to talk with about how you really feel, to share what you hope or fear?
As an end-of-life doula, I can partner with you through this stage of life and help you explore how to approach this time in ways that open up possibilities, reckon with the past and help you leave a legacy of insight and care.
If you are caring for someone who is dying and you would like a coach to support you through the process and give you a place to share what you are experiencing, I can do that as well. Let me help you give the gift of mindful care to your dying loved one. You don't need to do this alone.
Training and Experience: I am a certified end-of-life doula through the International End-of-Life Doula Association (INELDA), am pursuing my certification in thanatology (CT) with the Association for Death Education and Counseling (ADEC). I have received training from the Institute for the Study of Birth Breath and Death, the National End-of-Life Doula Association (NEDA), and UNC Hospice.
My mother initiated me into this work, her death being my first following my doula training. This photo to the right is of me at her bedside the day before she died.
I know, as a caregiver of a dying person, what it is like to be overwhelmed, exhausted and wondering if I'm doing enough or doing what is right. And I know what it is like to face a diagnosis that forces you to confront your mortality. I have become, through training and personal experience, the person I wish I had had when I was going through these experiences myself. I can make these experiences less burdensome and, with the right support, more meaningful and heart opening for you.
Contact me to discuss your questions and concerns and we can make a plan together.
I offer support and guidance across the entire end-of-life journey. I partner with people who are at a threshold. After a diagnosis or receiving the news of a limited time to live, people enter a new world. Life is no longer as it was, but there is still life to be lived. Below are some ways we can work together to make the most of the time you have.
Considering the care and support you will need at the very end of life before you get there is so important. Planning ensures your loved ones know your wishes and are relieved of the burden of making them on your behalf.
Consider what legacy you want to leave or stories you want to share and partner with me to capture them for your loved ones and community.
I can develop practices with you that help you face fear, manage pain and create a more mindful approach to illness and dying. Sitting with what is can be more freeing than resisting from a place of fear.
I can sit during the vigil time or provide respite visits for caregivers. I can be with you at the end and guide everyone through.
Do you want a green burial or a home funeral and are unsure how to do that? Do you want a hand-built, environmentally-friendly coffin? Do you want a celebration of your life to feature certain components? We can explore and plan together.
I can partner with you through the grief you are experiencing as a result of a prognosis for yourself or a loved one. Anticipatory grief can cloud our ability to be present and make the most of the time we have left. A grief partner can give you the space to express and explore your grief while helping you conduct a life review and address the meaningful end-of-life work of expressing your love and gratitude, asking for and offering forgiveness, and saying goodbye. This experience can be an opportunity to open more fully to the work your soul is here to do.
Care for the dying and death care are something we can all learn to do. We have lost so many traditions and practices as care of the dying and the dead became more medicalized and outsourced over the last century. This loss has contributed to our society's death phobia which limits our opportunities to live more fully.
Fortunately, many are awakening to the repercussions of these losses and are now more open to exploring death and dying, often doing so with curiosity, humor and love.
My goal is to help you feel more prepared to face your mortality or to care for those who are dying. You can do this. I'm here to help if you need it. It's OK to ask for help!
I work with people who are dying and their loved ones to help them navigate this space “betwixt” with grace, care and thoughtfulness so that when the dying time comes, everyone is held in a weave of support and can be fully present to face, or witness, the most important transition anyone undergoes.
So much of this work relies on us building our own capacity to listen, sit in a space of discomfort, and face what IS. When we do this, it opens doors of possibility and a better dying process and death are possible when we do. My work is to help more people build the capacity to be present in the moment, even when challenging, because that is where the opportunities exist for forgiveness, reconciliation, expression of gratitude and love, sharing of stories, moments of honesty, connection, and meaning making.
An end-of-life doula, or death doula, is someone who partners with a dying person and their circle of support to shape the dying process into an experience that is whole-making, loving and honoring of the life lived.
As an end-of-life doula, I offer support and guidance across the entire end-of-life journey. I founded Consulting Betwixt to partner with people who are at a threshold. After a diagnosis or receiving the news of a limited time to live, people enter a new world. Life is no longer as it was, but there is still life to be lived. I work with people who are dying and their loved ones to help them navigate this space “betwixt” with grace, care and thoughtfulness so that when the dying time comes, everyone is held in a weave of support and can be fully present to face, or witness, the most important transition anyone undergoes.
I was trained by Henry Fersko-Weiss, founder of the International End-of-Life Doula Association (INELDA), and I find INELDA's three-phase model of care a useful framework for doula service:
Getting Support So You can Support Another. Many people want to care for their dying loved ones themselves and may not feel comfortable inviting an unknown person into their inner circle. Sometimes a dying person is not ready or open to engage the support of an end-of-life doula. This is completely understandable. I want each of us to tap into our own ability to be a supportive, loving presence at the death bed. I can work with you as you care for a dying person so you have the support you need.
Call or contact me to learn more.