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What Comes With Age?

What comes with age? There’s lots of things people say come with age, things like wisdom, patience, tolerance, respect – things that we seem to spend a lifetime learning and acquiring. But there are other things that happen with age as well and often that culminates in developing a sense of what truly matters to us in life. We define what it is that we value the most. I’d like to tell you a story about a lady and we’re going to call her Maggie. I met Maggie when she was having a real struggle in life. She had had an accident; she had been near death and spent months in a hospital. She had no family to speak of and being in her 80’s she was declining

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When children are disappeared from death

I have been thinking a lot about my grandparents of late. Before my mum died she asked me to make sure that my grandmothers ashes got placed where she had wanted them to be, with her husband, my grandfather. I had my grandmother for 40 years of my life, most of that we lived together in various ways, and I adored her. Grandad died when I was much younger and his death was one of the most traumatic deaths I have known. Back in the 1980’s ashes urns were not buried as a standard practice, the ashes were at times dug into the earth under the monument. It didn’t feel right then when the cemetery offered to have Nanas ashes put in the urn in the ground then,

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So much talking!

While I keep working on an actual blog, I thought I would share a few podcasts that have hit the socials recently. There is also a Podcast for SBS called Grave Matters which you can find here – https://www.sbs.com.au/audio/podcast-episode/dead-curious-how-can-we-do-death-and-dying-better/j6faym76f

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ALKALINE HYDROLYSIS

Alkaline Hydrolysis is a process of reduction of human tissue, whereby the elements of the body return to a liquid state and placed back into the water cycle. Alkaline hydrolysis is a process of chemical reduction whereby organic and protein-based materials are reduced to liquid. There are different ways of doing this, using both pressurised machines with high temperature, and unpressurised machines with a low (or atmospheric) temperature. There are two main companies providing this technology in the USA – Bio-Response and Resomation. This is a relatively new method of human body disposal, which is both a disruptive technology and a working technology.  This process is known by many names including flameless cremation, water cremation, Resomation, Aquamation and it is legal in more than 20 states of the

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Natural Burial, Your Final Earthly Gift

In 2023 the Geeveston Progress Association opened up this patch of land pictured here, to natural burial. A local community volunteer run cemetery, for the community, by the community. It is an exciting step for Tasmania, being the first space set aside in a cemetery for natural burial in the state. I have been looking at natural burial for a long time. In 2017 my family and I traveled to the UK and spent time visiting many natural burial grounds and meeting with cemetery managements and funeral directors. In 2019 I completed a Churchill Fellowship to continue looking at it, and I expanded the scope. It was 10 weeks, 6 countries, 21 flights, 4 train journeys, 47 interviews, 2 conference, 3 chauffeurs, 4 guided tours, 2 interpreters, scores

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Funeral Director: Why DIY Funerals Do Work

Funeral Director: Why DIY Funerals Do Work Funeral Director: Why DIY Funerals Do Work Good news! While we have spent the last hundred years outsourcing more and more of life, the DIY movement has been claiming it back, and those who want to avoid funeral costs are working out the many and varied benefits of this approach to death. In the last 120 years we have lost over 5000 years of knowledge about caring for our dead. Every one of you is capable of caring for your dead. It is legal, it is possible and it can fundamentally change what it means to grieve in this world. Facts –    * funeral directors are not always a legal requirement in every situation;    * there are many things

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A Living Funeral

Have you ever considered what your funeral will be like? Who will attend.. what will they say… what will be chosen by way of flowers, music and decoration… will there be tears.. will people celebrate you and all you meant to them? But more than that, what would you say if you had the chance… What would your last words be? Last week Edwin and I were privileged to have the opportunity to attend the very first living funeral ceremony in Tasmania. The very generous and thoughtful Maria Lazovic came to Tasmania and offered her Living Funeral session for the lovely people of Hobart. More than just a time to contemplate mortality, this is a few hours of intense soul searching and internal reconciliation of both what is

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The Churchill Fellowship Report

I am so pleased to be able to share with you all the report I submitted for my Churchill Fellowship. Some of you might know that when I sat to write I came up with about 80,000 words and so it was with the help of two incredibly supportive and courageous women that I identified the main points and created something manageable for a report. Annetta and Pia, I can not thank you enough. The rest has not gone to waste, I am considering options for putting it into a book. You will find the report is now available on my Fellowship page on the website of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. Just click the ‘download now’ button and the report will appear. I hope there’s a little something

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A new horizon

Time just seems to fly. Sometimes I wonder if that is how I will feel when my own life comes to its inevitable end. I hope to look back on the people I have loved, the places I have been and all the beautiful moments that I have shared with the special people in my life. But will I think it’s all been too fleeting? There are few things more powerful in the world than our memories and connections with each other – often with age, our memories fade but the feelings they leave us can most often stay a lifetime. In the last six months, we have been making some of those beautiful lifetime connections. As many of you know I went traveling in 2019 after being

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Dying to live.

Dying to know… dying to get there…. dying to see you again… It’s amazing how often we hear people talk about what they are dying to do….. When I logged in tonight I realised it has been four months since I wrote a blog post. The death of my Grandmother. And she was dying to die. She had lived an incredible life and she had had enough. Since then I feel like the world has been turning a little too fast. I have done talks at various places, the Whittle Ward, Southern Palliative Care Service, a Lung Transplant support group… You n’ Taboo has been asked to have a table at a new event this week coming called ‘Shining a Light on Death’ – https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=508476, we are organising ourselves

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