Volunteer Newsletter - October 2021
Greetings!
2ND ANNUAL LANTERNS OF LOVE EVENT
(Coming Soon)

JOIN US IN REMEMBRANCE OF OUR LOVED ONES
throughout this holiday season.

More than 200 illuminated lanterns will gracefully surround our
Kauai Hospice Center for Compassion. It is a beautiful and
moving way to honor the memory of loved ones.

Starting OCTOBER 6, Lanterns of Love can be reserved online.
Two varieties are available, while supplies last.
Orders can be placed online at: KauaiHospice.org

Note: Our traditional winter events, the Candle Lighting Memorials & Trees of Remembrance, will not be held.
ALWAYS WITH LOVE - EXPECTED DEATH
Facebook Post September 4, 2021

When someone dies, the first thing to do is nothing. Don't run out and call the nurse. Don't pick up the phone. Take a deep breath and be present to the magnitude of the moment.
 
There's a grace to being at the bedside of someone you love as they make their transition out of this world. At the moment they take their last breath, there's an incredible sacredness in the space. The veil between the worlds opens.
 
We're so unprepared and untrained in how to deal with death that sometimes a kind of panic response kicks in. "They're dead!"
 
We knew they were going to die, so their being dead is not a surprise. It's not a problem to be solved. It's very sad, but it's not cause to panic.
 
If anything, their death is cause to take a deep breath, to stop, and be really present to what's happening. If you're at home, maybe put on the kettle and make a cup of tea.

Sit at the bedside and just be present to the experience in the room. What's happening for you? What might be happening for them? What other presences are here that might be supporting them on their way? Tune into all the beauty and magic. Continue reading.

Words by Sarah Kerr, Death Doula. Her original video link is here. Mahalo Vicki Requilman for finding this post.
ARTICLE: THE CURIOUS WORLD OF DOLLHOUSE GRAVES
By Kate Cherrell, Burials and Beyond
April 10, 2021
 
Scattered across American cemeteries are a handful of fascinating, poignant and unusual graves, commemorating the short lives of little girls whose parents wanted to memorialize them a little more unusually in death. Sitting like miniature residences between the headstones, these doll’s house graves are a striking example of non-traditional funerary art and changing ideas of grief, innocence, personalization and burial. Read more...
CELEBRATION OF LIFE OR DENIAL OF DEATH?
By Linda Stuart - Death Cafe Blog Post excerpt

"Call me a killjoy, but I’m not a huge fan of the “happy funeral” trend. I’m also concerned that the term “Celebration of Life” puts unnecessary pressure on a family to “make it fun.” I hear it all the time: “We don’t want people to feel sad.” But sad is what we are supposed to feel when someone we care about dies. To deny ourselves that safe space to feel sadness is to deny and diminish the value and purpose that funerals offer us as human beings. You may want a party. But you may need a funeral. Sadness is not a disease we need to cure. It’s a feeling we need to feel." Read the full blog post here.
WORDEN'S FOUR TASKS OF MOURNING

Psychologist and grief researcher J. William Worden, PhD outlines four basic tasks of the grief process that must be accomplished if a person is going to have a healthy recovery from the death of a loved one. The goal is to essentially love again! The model is described in his book"Grief Counseling and Grief Therapy: A Handbook for the Mental Health Practitioner". 

Task One: Accept the Reality of the Loss
Acknowledge the fact that the loved one is dead.

Task Two: Experience the Pain of Grief
Fully accept the painful feelings of sorrow associated with the loss.

Task Three: Adjust to Life without the Deceased
Adapt to a new reality without your loved one. Develop new coping skills as well as abilities and strengths to adjust to the demands of life.

Task Four: Find an Enduring Connection with the Deceased While Embarking on a New Life
Emotionally reinvest in life again and direct energy towards new interests, new places, and new relationships.

Task Five (added by Ken Doka, PhD): Reconstruct Belief Systems Challenged by Loss.
Reconstructing meaning and purpose within the context of faith when loss has shaken the foundation of one's beliefs.
VIDEO - AN ALTERNATIVE TO ASHES (5:46 minutes)
 
Santa Fe artist and entrepreneur Justin Crowe was awarded a small business grant providing technical assistance from Los Alamos National Laboratory to turn cremated ashes into alabaster-looking stones using a kiln. Since the solidification process for human ashes is similar to making ceramics, the expertise of the Lab’s ceramic engineer Chris Chen enabled Crowe’s company, Parting Stone, to refine a process that changes ashes into unique stones. The ashes of a 100-pound person would yield 25-40 solidified remains which will vary in shape, color, and texture. The stones can be easily distributed among family and friends, or placed on display. Here’s their exceptional story. You can also read the Los Alamos National Laboratory article: "Ashes to alabaster-like stones" (Nov. 2019).
ARTICLE: DOCUMENTING DEATH - THE DEATH CERTIFICATE
FROM PBS FRONTLINE: Post Mortem-Death Investigation in America 

The U.S. started maintaining vital records in 1900 and by the mid-1930s all states were collecting mortality data. The death certificate is arguably the most important legal document in existence. It's the only legal proof that someone has died. The State uses it to stop social security payments, pensions and other benefits, and families use it to settle their affairs. This informative article addresses key questions: Is there a standard form? What is the most important part? Who signs it? Where does the data go? Can errors be corrected? Read more here...
EXCERPT FROM "THE ART OF LIVING AND DYING" by OSHO

When a rose flower is disappearing in the evening, its petals are falling,
sit there and meditate.
Feel yourself as a flower with your petals falling.
 
Early in the morning when the sun rises and the stars disappear,
feel yourself disappearing with the stars.
 
And when the sun has risen and the dewdrops on the grass leaves start disappearing,
feel yourself disappearing like the dewdrops.
 
Feel death in as many ways as possible.
Become a great experience of death.
CONTACT: Rayne Regush, Volunteer Coordinator
Main 808-245-7277 | Direct 808-977-8501 | www.kauaihospice.org
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