Making Sense of Life, Death, and COVID-19

I’ve been thinking a lot about how the Coronavirus informs my experience of making sense of life and death. Here’s what I’ve come up with.  While we’re in denial about our own mortality, we’re obsessed with stories about death and dying.  The way COVID-19 is affecting us varies from region to region but what’s common…
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All That Matters in the End Matters Now

Identifying your core values—the second tool in Willow’s 7 Tools for Making Sense of Life & Death workbook—is a critical part of the foundational work of end-of-life planning. Seeing your values reflected in your end-of-life plans also keeps you accountable to living the life you want. Let me share how this works for me. The…
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Unlock the Door to Your ‘Good Death’

“I was so relieved when I named and declared my fear around my death and dying. I’ve been carrying it around for so long, and thought I was the only one.” This was shared by one of the participants at Willow’s Legacy, Love Letters + Heart Wills workshop this past weekend in Vancouver, Canada.  Hopes…
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3 Reasons to Talk About How Your Dead Are Laid to Rest

When someone we care about is dying, family and friends are often kept in the loop via text or email or a community-care app or website. The person dies and if we’re lucky there’s a gathering of sorts to bring people together to honour, remember, mourn and celebrate this person we must now live without.  …
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How Ram Dass Inspired Me to Co-Create Willow

Ram Dass (Of Blessed Memory), an American spiritual teacher, psychologist, author and one of my sources of inspiration, died on December 22nd, 2019. His teachings inspired me to co-create Willow. During my training in community deathcaring, I listened to a Ram Dass lecture on YouTube (Facing Death, Ram Dass Full Lecture 1992). In this riveting…
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Tools to Connect (Inward & Outward) in Any Season

Consciously or unconsciously, we live our lives according to particular values. Knowing your core values is one thing, living them or embodying them is another. As I move through this dance called life, I’m coming to understand and accept that how we express our core values can evolve.

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A Manifesto for Living: 5 Calls to Action for Living Your Best Life

For everything that comes to an end there is a legacy. And Willow’s Legacy, Love Letters and Heart Wills Mexico Retreat is no exception. When we recall the many profound observations and revelations shared among our group of 14, we came up with what we consider this collective Manifesto for Living.  Click here to download…
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3 Ways to Make this Halloween More Meaningful

Depending where you live, you may be surrounded by plastic skeletons, scary-looking ghosts, and perhaps some creatively-carved pumpkins. If you live in the US or Canada and various other countries, you’ll be tempted to gloss over the once-holy day with mini Kit Kats and costume parties. But if that’s all you’re doing, you’re missing out. …
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Back to Basics: Caring for Our Own

If your 90-year-old Aunt Bettina died tomorrow, there’s a pretty predictable pattern for what would happen next and how she’d be taken care of—unless, that is, you understand the scope of choices available to you, including, caring for your own.  There’s a good chance Aunt Bettina witnessed community deathcaring as a young girl, whether she…
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