Thoughts After The April Upminster Death Cafe

Something that a lot of people tell me is that I always seem to be busy. I fully acknowledge that this is mostly true. Somehow, one way or another, I find it harder to organise chill out evenings or days for myself than events! Please don’t think I am complaining, I feel very lucky for having got a career I love and I can arrange things in my spare time which add to this.

We had a very successful and enjoyable Death Cafe on Tuesday which drew three new attendees who seemed to have a great evening and a number of regulars turned up again. I love the fact people keep coming along and that we still have new people who are interested and want to find out more about it. Some previous events have been quite intense and others very lighthearted, the one this month started off quite heavy and ultimately became a lot more cheerful through people sharing funny stories about what has happened to them relating to loved ones dying or through their own experiences with death. I think this summarises something perfect about death, yes it is a horrible time for us all and it will always be an unpleasant thing but there are funny and happy moments that we will remember and can share which make it easier. One thing that came up was people’s strange reactions to death and the unexpected things people do, which included my Mum and I sharing how a friend of my Nan’s when she died who only seemed interested in asking if he could have her television only a day or two afterwards. I remember being furious at the time, but it also serves as a ridiculous story we can now laugh about, the actual audacity of someone to ask if they could take her not exactly expensive or start of the art TV!

I am really please to announce that my Death Cafe hosting has meant that I have some great events lined up for Dying Matters week 2019. More details of these will follow! One thing I wanted to focus on today was the point of Death Cafe and to try an encourage people who may not have been previously to try and attend an event. I think it’s important to point out that a lot of people ask me about them but are sure that they would have nothing to contribute. Trust me when I say, everyone has something to contribute. You might not think discussing death is for you, but we have all either been affected by death or we have thought about it in our lives. It is also something that will, with certainty, happen to us all.

One question I get asked a lot is what the typical Death Cafe attendee is like. I don’t believe there is such a thing as a stupid question but there are ones that are difficult to answer and that is one of them. I think it is fair to say that there is not a typical attendee at all. Another question I am asked is if it is worth it, and I trully believe that anyone can get a lot out of the experience. I mean it when I say that if you have any questions or are curious in any way I would like you to get in touch and we can discuss it. I started the Death Cafe in quite a selfish way, to talk to other people about my passions and interests but I think it is a wonderful thing that has grown into something I love doing through seeing other people enjoy the experience too.

You can see what events are lined up for Dying Matters Week in your area at the webite www.dyingmatters.org or you can research Death Cafes in your area via the postcode search at their website www.deathcafe.com. The details of the Upminster Death Cafe event for May can be found here https://deathcafe.com/deathcafe/8531/.

MG x

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