What is a death doula?
Much like a mother-to-be may hire a doula to provide her with mental, emotional, and physical support during childbirth, a death doula works alongside caregivers, hospice workers, and medical professionals to foster a supportive environment for the dying and those in their presence. In this episode, my guest Anne-Marie Keppel discusses creating a “tragically beautiful death”.
Not all deaths have a planning period. Not all families behave well. But should you find yourself bedside or otherwise in the presence of a dying person, in their final moments, you will find comfort in having given prior thought to the experience. Many loved ones regret that they lost grace in the moment of death because of their unexpected shock, fear, and discomforting lack of awareness which dulls connection at the very precious and powerful moment.
Normalizing the death experience
Death is not an easy topic. Let’s change that. Anne-Marie and I hope that while listening to our conversation you become increasingly more comfortable thinking about the death experience and in turn may be better prepared to have discussions with others. As she points out, quiet death is hidden from us and as I share, no matter how obvious it is that a person is actively dying, the very moment of death always feels unexpected.
- Mary’s bedside experiences with her father and mother’s deaths
- Modern vs. Ancient Death Doulas
- Death nesting
- Sensory experiences at death
- Managing the environment
- The history of hospitals and death
- Home deaths
- Mindfulness practices
- Herbal Care
- Much more…
The full unedited video of my entire one-hour and 20-minute conversation with Anne-Marie is available to the awesome members of Mary Rogers’ Neighborhood on my Patreon Page. Videos include pre- and post- podcast interview chat between me and my guests.
May I suggest that you buy several copies of Anne-Marie Keppel’s beautiful book. One for yourself, and additional copies to give to your children and your midlife friends.
Anne-Marie Keppel is the author of Death Nesting: Ancient & Modern Death Doula Techniques, Mindfulness Practices and Herbal Care. She is a Life-Cycle Funeral Celebrant, community deathcare educator, and Reiki Master practitioner. Anne-Marie is a mother of three– ages 22, 18 and 4– and lives in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont.
You can learn more about Anne-Marie: https://stardustmeadow.com/