Let Go of the Fear! It’s Inevitable, We Need to Do Dying Right!
Certified End of Life Doulas are now available to help support our Baby Boomers Elder population, as well as End of Life patients and their families. And thank goodness! It’s about time! End of Life Doula’s are a new and exciting area of healthcare. Time Magazine named End of Life Doulas one of the seven top new professions in 2017. This past June, Doula’s were nationally recognized by the National Palliative and Hospice Association. Within two years, every household will know what an End of Life Doula is and exactly what they can offer them.
Susan Capurso of East End Doula Care (Long Island, NY) says, “Doulas support patients and families physically, spiritually, emotionally and practically. They guide from the beginning to end and enter lives no matter where they are on their timeline. As a Birthing Doula helps to bring new babies into the world in a warm and celebratory way, End of Life Guides are now helping individuals leave the world in a warm, light and positive way. Families are overwhelmed and frightened to care for their dying loved ones at home. In our society, we don’t even talk about death, let alone being mindful and planning for it.”
Educating families on a few things is key. Most people don’t understand what a Hospice really does. Hospice offers you a team of five who come into your life and help you along your journey. They can come in much earlier than people realize. They are not only there to serve you in the end. They are a saving grace. Your Medical team also guides and supports you along the way. How a Doula differs? They are non-medical. They are not aides. They can offer larger blocks of time to you and can cover an array of things that you need to button up throughout your time spent with them. End of Life Guides are a compliment or adjunct to both Hospice and Medical teams.
Doula’s are now serving in their own practices after an extensive certification process. In Susan’s practice, East End Doula Care, her specialty, and passion, is utilizing creative legacy work. In her soon to be published book, she offers over a hundred ways a family or individual can bring in projects, idea’s and tools to celebrate end of life. She provides powerful and creative solutions to bring meaning and closure to your own End of Life Journey. Susan says, “Every piece you leave behind, helps future generations to have a better tomorrow.” Whether creating pieces of legacy, fulfilling bucket lists that haven’t yet come to fruition, or completing your missing Advanced Directives, she can help button it all up, soup to nuts. Where she can’t help, she is sure to have the resources you need implemented into your life.
Susan’s ‘Aha moment’ came the day she realized how caregivers who work in facilities are suffering a huge disconnect. They have worked with their residents for many years. When they pass, the person is swiftly moved on to their final resting place. Caregivers suffer loss at home like we all do, now they have to grieve internally in their workplace as well. Do they take home these emotions? Of course! They are not grieving properly.
East End Doula Care now offers workshops to all facilities for their caregivers, on “Rituals and Vigils” – An End of Life Celebration. Of the 25 Rituals she teaches them, if each establishment implemented only one or two into their workplace, all of their staff and colleagues could honor a life and a friend with grace and dignity.
Susan says, “It is not only an honor to be able to travel with a person as they enter their last chapter, it is a privilege.” She will guide you in coming full circle by collaborating your wisdom and experiences with her, allowing you to leave a timeless thumbprint in the world. You can leave eternal value in the world. We all deserve to feel a sense of identity and meaning in our existence before we leave this world.