“What on earth is a Death Café?” I’ve been asked that question more than once.
The answer from the website is simple:
At a Death Cafe people, often strangers, gather to eat cake, drink tea
and discuss death. Our objective is 'to increase awareness of death with a
view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives'. A Death Cafe is
a group directed discussion of death with no agenda, objectives or themes.
It is a discussion group rather than a grief support or counselling session.
On January 25th, 2017, Haliburton Ontario hosted their first Death Café at a wonderful place called “Baked and Battered.” Do people want to talk about death? Are they curious? I think so, because over 36 people showed up and it was standing room only. Who knew! I believe that many people want or need to talk, they just don’t know where to go.
Louise told me after that she got a lot out of it. She shared her personal story with me:
It’s a conversation that’s hard to have for a variety of reasons. We lost our daughter suddenly. I hugged her at 11:30 pm and by 6:30 am she had died. And you are just not
ready for that. My grandchildren saw her and experienced the 911 people coming and everything. We had to learn to talk about it quickly and we still do.
But even with having gone through this, we haven’t figured things out with our other daughter. So that was an ‘aha moment’ for me today.
I said to Louise: “I applaud you for being here and for bringing the conversation
into your family and now you will take the next step.”
My mission is to bring death out of the darkness, into our conversations and to empower
one another. It’s no wonder I love the Death Café concept and I am grateful to
Jon Underwood for creating this international movement. Have a look at the website.
Would you like to have these conversations? Would you like to host your own Death Café?
The only way to diffuse our fear and not be scared to death of death
is to have “The Talk” and just keep talking!!
Yvonne Heath is Canada's Proactive Living Consultant. She is a Speaker, Television Host, Award Winning Author
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