The Upminster Death Cafe in November was earlier in the month than usual but that didn’t stop us filling out the venue and having a great time. We had nine people not including the hosts this time around and the discussions were as varied and as interesting as always. I think these events only get more and more fascinating as they develop and evolve. Some new people came along but also many familiar faces, having regulars who come makes me so happy and feel like it’s all worthwhile. A huge thank you is due to Rachel who co-hosts with me, and Caroline and Rose of the Sweet Rose Cakery who without their help it wouldn’t be possible.
I think it’s fair to say this event in particular was, at times, a heavy one from the respect of dealing with some quite serious topics. It really got me pondering some of the more philosophical sides to my career and how best to talk to people about these. I do often get people ask me, in a highly concerned manner, about aspects of my job. I am not saying I am the best person to advise people in any way, but I do know a lot of people. I’m a good person to start with among many, many others who have information that can help people and I’m always happy to answer questions or point people in the right direction for information.
I think it’s hard to say exactly what drew me to this profession, or what makes me want to be so involved via hosting Death Cafes or attending other events. It has to be said that I do love talking about death, and I enjoy talking to others about it. Through that I get a sense of fulfilment through either informing others or learning from people. I don’t think I’ve had a conversation at a Death Cafe for example where I didn’t share my own knowledge, gain knowledge from someone else or there was a combination of the two.
Armed with knowledge, people are more prepared and can make more informed decisions which is much better for all of this involved. Someone without the important knowledge at the right times can become vulnerable. One thing I would say, is that I can’t guarantee all the conversation will be comfortable for you. Personally, I have very little self imposed filter and have to be reminded often that I can be too graphic or blunt for more sensitive types. However, it is by pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and hearing this uncomfortable truths that you learn more and become comfortable with them.
I hope that our little Death Cafe runs for as long as it is wanted by the people attending, and as long as people do attend we will host them. If you would like to know more about it please feel free to contact me, or to find an event closer to you there is a search at deathcafe.com where you can see what is happening around the world.
As I write I’m sat curled up under a blanket with a cup of tea, staring out of the window at the damp Norfolk countryside. I promised I would both get a post out to you but also that I would try to switch off for at least a day and recharge my batteries. I’ll be back next week and try to get at least an introductory post to the tools we use.