I seem to be fixed on the theme of conversations related to death, and here’s another approach taken by a group from Seattle.
I think it a more open and engaging way to begin a difficult conversation (as compared with the My Gift of Grace game I wrote about yesterday), but there still needs to be facilitation and ongoing support to turn these salon moments into substance, family and medical care awareness, legal documentation, etc.
A thought occurs to me. We could use an entirely new professional category in this world, an ombudsman for the mortality process, someone trained in the law and in medicine of course AND also in the psychology of families, and the spirit, and in love and re-creation after the moment of death has passed–multifaceted to say the least. But we need someone who can and will bridge these silos of decision making and experience so that someone dying–and the survivors surrounding that person–can all have as complete and meaningful an experience as possible, at end-of-life and beyond.
After all, there is dying yes, but there is also a whole lot of living and carrying on that must happen after that last breath. So far, I see little concerted attention focused on the what comes after a dying person leaves the medical facility. There’s so much more we can and should do. Hard, but not impossible, and why in the world shouldn’t we try?