What are end of life services?
The end of life support, care and advocacy service that I offer deserves its own explanation. It is not a standard service that everyone would require, nor it is typically a service that families are aware of or consider in advance. Many times I hear from people that they only stop to consider their support needs when they are faced with a terminal diagnosis or take on the role of caring for a loved one with a life limiting illness. I also hear many times, 'I wish I had known about you sooner', typically after experiencing the loss of a loved one where they were not aware of other complementary support options.
People simply do not understand that there are alternate options available in conjunction with the current medical model and support infrastructure. My desire is to educate our community to understand that, just as in life, our end of life choices are ours to make and there are personalised options available. If end of life care and support is a consideration for you then you are most likely already facing living with a chronic, terminal or life limiting condition, or alternately caring for someone who is.
There are many names that have arisen to label this evolving role, such as Death Doula, End of life Doula, End of Life Companion, Death Midwife. What this highlights is the growing acceptance that our loved ones, and we ourselves, deserve end of life options that differ to those currently available, or different to the clinical model that has become the norm over the past 100 years. Much like a childbirth doula, my role is to provide advice, information, emotional and spiritual support, companionship and physical comfort before, during, and after the dying process to the dying person and most often their primary carer/s.
In my speciality as a Life Transition Celebrant I offer a diverse scope of services specifically tailored to meet the needs of the individual and the family during these challenging and emotional transitions. These services are not limited to immediately prior, or directly after, the death of a loved one. Many of these services can have significant positive impact from the point of a life-limiting diagnosis.