Friday, 20 September 2019

Dying Made Easy(er) by Myra Bennett + #Giveaway + Guest Post

Dying Made Easy(er): Creating Your Happy Ending by Myra Bennett
Published in America by Balboa Press in June 2019.

Stories of American prowess in technology and medicine abound. And while these achievements have extended the lives of patients, they have not always extended the quality of those lives. As the older population in America skyrockets, more and more people who have received a terminal diagnosis, as well as those who love them, must grapple with the devastating decision of how they will forestall--or face--death. In Dying Made Easy(er) by Myra Bennett, we are guided through the diverse phases and considerations of the end of life by an experienced traveler who's spent many hours "as a guest in the sacred place of the dying." Bennett, a hospice nurse and certified end of life doula, who has also grappled with death in her personal life, invites us to contemplate dying from many different angles: legal, social, physical, psychological, and spiritual. Her Dying Made Easy(er) is both a handbook of pertinent information and a medley of informed suggestions for us to consider when experiencing or sharing the phenomenon that is the end of life. Bennett believes it is imperative that we--as a community--are aware of how to find help when faced with death and dying. In Dying Made Easy(er), she provides the resources to address this pressing need.

​Bennett, who is the co-founder of Compassionate Crossings in Sacramento, has seen it all. She's witnessed the dying process unfold in beautiful ways, with gifts for all involved, and she's seen it devolve into a series of anguished mishaps that leave the family praying for an early transition. As there are no opportunities for rehearsals or do-overs, Bennett is committed to helping us better understand dying as the last--but not the least--chapter of life, and to helping us dream what this chapter might look like. In her warm and wise book, we learn how to turn this dream into a personal reality that will meet not only our deep-felt needs and desires but also those of our family and loved ones.

CAN WE TALK? by Myra Bennett

Have you ever wondered why, when the subject of sex comes up, people will often smile? Why is that? Discussions about the subject can be humorous, but generally speaking, sex isn’t all that funny. What it can be however, is embarrassing. So we smile, when we would rather change the subject or even walk away.

The topic of death and dying however, doesn’t usually cause people to feel embarrassed--instead they may feel nervous, or often just sad. Who wants to be “bummed out” by talking about the death of oneself or someone we love? As much as we do not enjoy feeling embarrassed, we really avoid sadness. So we change the subject, walk away, or most of the time--refuse to discuss death and dying altogether.

End of life is as sure to happen as the beginning of life did. Our life comes with an ending that, while can be intentionally planned, can not be avoided. Most of us will have a dying experience that is out of our hands, unless we decide otherwise. If we hope to be in control of our life-- even when we are dying--we better start by talking about it now.

Acclimation is not a word you see in print often and not one you might expect to see here, but we humans have historically benefitted from our ability to acclimate to life. So too can we acclimate to death, and there are ways that we can learn how.

So how do we acclimate to something we so inherently dislike? Repeated exposure to just about anything in life will cause most of us to become accustomed to the object or subject, even becoming comfortable with it over a period of time. In essence, we just need to stop avoiding and denying death.

I suggest starting with small doses of the subject. Read a book or short articles, visit death and dying related websites (see the list below). Once you’re ready to have a discussion about the subject, visit a “death cafe”. If you don’t know what a death cafe is, “google” search it and find one in your area (they’re worldwide). Next, look for a “Let’s Talk About Death (over dinner)” event near you.

Once you’ve exposed yourself to the subject enough, you should be ready to invite dialog with your family and loved ones. Expect resistance, but don’t back down. They will need to know how you feel about your end of life, because they will likely be there too. And at least one of your loved ones may need to be your voice, should you not be able to speak for yourself. Make a list of those you hope will be there with you when you are dying, and invite them over for dinner or a cocktail party, and let them know the reason for the occasion. 

The last action I invite you to take is to complete your advance healthcare directive. You may include this task in your estate planning with your attorney, and many people do. I do not suggest this however, as attorneys know a great deal about the law, but very little about end of life healthcare decisions. Find an end of life doula ( to guide you through the process, as this person will be a good source of knowledge about medical care choices.
Yes, we can talk.

List of death and dying websites:


Meet the author:
Myra has been a student of death and dying since she experienced the loss of her husband in 2001. The years that would follow saw the loss of many friends and family as well, which gave her life experiences she would later use to care for patients as a hospice nurse at a large national hospice agency.

Today Myra is a certified end of life doula at Compassionate Crossings in Sacramento where she not only guides and supports terminally ill persons and their families, she also speaks and educates on all subjects related to death and dying.

Connect with the author:
Website  ~  YouTube  ~  Facebook ~ Instagram

Enter the Giveaway!  

Win one of two hard copies and 3 ebooks of Dying Made Easy(er). One winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card (six winners)
Open to the USA only.
Ends October 5th, 2019

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Etsy Find!
by Caitlyn Minimalist in
California, USA

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Search Literary Flits for more:
Books by Myra Bennett / Self help books / Books from America


  1. What a thought provoking post. I never heard of a death cafe. Need to look that up. Something to think about.

    1. Myra has lots of considerate and thoughtful advice on a difficult topic to broach