4 Myths about Dying That It’s Time to Debunk

Over time, many believes have been adopted about the dying process. While some are true, several are just myths, developed as people across the centuries have tried to understand something all of us go through, yet few truly understand. These misconceptions can interfere with receiving the best care possible at end of life. Debunking these

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Grief Sucks! Grievers Don’t

I love the way my friend Crystal approaches grief. She is right out there, no BS, and gets right to the heart of it.  Grief. Sucks! In her book Confessions of a Griever: Turning a Hot Mess into an Haute Message (Laughable Lessons for When Life Just Sucks) Crystal brings us into her world of

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Resilience: What it is and Why it Matters

When your world has suddenly fallen into chaos, you tend to hit survival mode pretty quickly. Your life becomes focused on just getting through the day. Beyond that, you don’t have the time or energy even to care. The best times for personal growth are when our world has turned upside down and we’re being

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5 Ways to Experience Personal Growth… even in the midst of chaos

When your world has suddenly fallen into chaos, you tend to hit survival mode pretty quickly. Your life becomes focused on just getting through the day. Beyond that, you don’t have the time or energy even to care. The best times for personal growth are when our world has turned upside down and we’re being

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Five Easy Ways to Build Resilience

Box Breathing – Also known as 4-square breathing, this exercise helps to clear your mind, relax your body, and improve your focus. Not only is it highly effective, but it’s also quick to learn and easy to do. Close your eyes (if you are in a place where you can) and breathe in through your

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When Traditions Change: Remembering Loved Ones At The Holidays

Thanksgiving used to be one of my favorite holidays. With 20-25 close family members gathered around, we laughed. We ate. We went for a walk. And ate some more! From my childhood, I remember the teeny little crystal glasses with handles even my small fingers couldn’t grasp filled with all sorts of liqueurs. “After dinner

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In Chaos Are Stars

Three things I do when life feels out of control I joined a mastermind recently. It’s amazing! The information, support, experience, community are the best by far. I love it! And I hate it! There is so much involved that there are days I feel totally lost on what I should do next. My desk

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Mom and Child

Because We Moms NEVER Feel Guilty!!

There are so many things moms can and do feel guilty about. “Will I breastfeed or use formula?” when our children are newborns to “What college should we choose?” when our children are beginning to leave home. Does this describe you? We feel guilty when we choose fast food instead of a homemade dinner with organic

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Be My Guest with Jan Lewis, Upton Public Television

(Watch Interview Here)   My name is Jan Lewis and I am the Host of “Be My Guest!”, a television interview program that airs on  Youtube and locally online.  I read the article in the Community Advocate about your work as an end-of-life coach, and I think it is wonderful!  I would like to extend an

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The Community Advocate – Life Coach, Rev. Lee Atherton

Marlborough-based End-of-Life Coach Rev. Lee Atherton: Driven by Faith Reverend Lee Atherton is a professional officiant and life coach. She offers highly personalized services for anyone facing one of life’s momentous transitions.Inclusive and welcoming, Atherton believes that no matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome. An ordained minister and

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GRIEVING AND THE HOLIDAYS

Holidays, whether religious or secular, are especially painful for those who are grieving. The death of someone you love can make this “most wonderful time of the year” anything but joyful and bright. Grieving During the Holidays Grieving this last year in the midst of Covid-19 has left many feeling more isolated and lonely than

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CELEBRATING LOIS – FUNERALS AND LOLLIPOPS

Several years ago when I began working at AseraCare Hospice, I was introduced to an extraordinary woman named Lois.  My colleague Judy knew her long before she had dementia and long before I began caring for her.  She heard Lois, accompanied by a famous pianist, sing with grace, beauty and intensity.  Her joy and passion in life were

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Grief but not crazy

AM I GOING CRAZY? NO, YOU’RE IN GRIEF

Grief is a natural reaction to losing an important person or thing. You may feel all kinds of emotions like you are going crazy! This might include sadness or loneliness. And you could experience it for many reasons. Could be the death of a loved one, a relationship ended, or you lost your job. Other

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GRAM’S BUSH – A YOUNG CHILD’S EXPERIENCE OF DEATH

I attended the funeral of a beloved Grandmother. One of her grandchildren, James, who is 6 years old, spent that last week of life with Gram. What an amazing gift they both received before her death! Children and Experience of Death We often try to avoid conversations about death and dying even though death happens just

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CREATING A LASTING TRIBUTE

What is a tribute? A tribute is a clear indication of the abilities and accomplishments of an individual. Saying or doing anything in honor of, or to show regard and respect for a person, you pay tributes. How do you want your loved one to be remembered? What is most important for you to share with

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HOW WILL YOU LIVE YOUR DYING?

One of the most difficult messages to hear from your medical practitioner is “This is a terminal illness. You only have a limited time to live.” How do you want to live the time you have left? Do you have a bucket list? Who do you want to visit with again? What relationships need mending?

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MY VALUES. MY WISHES. MY DIGNIT

Mom died over 25 years ago. When I look back at that last year of her life, I see so many gifts she gave to her children and grandchildren. It was clear that she had put thought into how her dying would impact those she loved most. That “D” word, even today, is one that

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5 WISHES

Mom died over 25 years ago. When I look back at that last year of her life, I see so many gifts she gave to her children and grandchildren. It was clear that she had put thought into how her dying would impact those she loved most. That “D” word, even today, is one that

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NAVIGATING GRIEF DURING THE HOLIDAYS

Going through the “Firsts” of grief can be one of the most difficult parts of grief. If you’re wondering how to survive the holidays without your loved one, here are some strategies you may find helpful. 1.     Remember That Time Doesn’t Heal All Wounds Grief doesn’t just go away after a short time. When others say

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I TOOK THE PLUNGE!

When, in your life, have you just jumped in with both feet not quite knowing what will happen next? It takes a whole lot of courage! That’s for sure! How do I know? I just did it over the summer. After quite a while having a steady income (who doesn’t like that?!) and doing work

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MARRIAGE; THE MAKINGS OF A PERFECT SOUFFLÉ

“A soufflé isn’t the soufflé, a soufflé is the recipe.” – Clara Oswald, Dr. Who A few weeks back I was going over my Easter menu and as I mentioned the possibility of a soufflé a good friend immediately asked, “well isn’t that hard”?  Well sure, but isn’t it worth it? Look, we have all

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WEDDING GUESTS

Who Should We Invite? Sure, we could go back to Emily Post and see what she says about this sticky subject.  There’re whole websites dedicated to wedding etiquette. We’d find all the traditional “Do this”,  “Do that”, “Remember if you invite Aunt June then you better be sure to invite her 5 kids and their

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SONG LYRICS AS READINGS

Using Your Favorite Love Song in Your Ceremony   Wedding ceremonies often include a “reading”.  Sometimes it is a reading from the sacred text of the bride’s or groom’s faith tradition; sometimes a favorite love poem.   Readings that speak to the couple can set the tone of the ceremony.  Whether read by the Officiant,

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ARE CHRISTIANS REALLY SUPPOSED TO BE CELEBRATING HALLOWEEN?

Pastor Lee answers: Are Christians really supposed to be celebrating Halloween? First let me say that whatever you hope the answer is, you’ll find an article or blog on line backing you up – whether you are Christian or not. I never put too much thought into this until my very conservative neighbors moved in.

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SHE SAID YES TO THE DRESS!! MOM’S PERSPECTIVE

My daughter’s getting married in June 2019.  She’s got lots of time to plan, so when she heard that a nearby bridal shop was having huge going out of business sale, she asked me to go check it out with her.  We both figured it couldn’t hurt to start daydreaming.  So off we went spur

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WHY YOU SHOULD BRING YOUR BABY TO CHURCH

As a clergy person who preaches every Sunday morning and is often found at weddings and funerals, I often get to tell parents, “Don’t stay away. You and your baby are welcome!” In fact one of my church members has fun teasing me when she sees me sway while I pray.  Or sing.  Or…  Anything I’m doing

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WHY SHOULD I GIVE SOMETHING UP FOR LENT?

I’m not Catholic!  Why should I give up something for Lent? “I’ll quit smoking!” “I’m not going to eat meat.”  “No more swearing for lent – catch me do it and I’ll put a quarter in the jar!” Are you scratching your head over this one?  This traditionally Catholic practice can actually be a practice

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DO WE NEED A WEDDING REHEARSAL?

I don’t require a rehearsal, but there are lots of points to consider before you opt out.  There’s more confidence going into a ceremony and less chance for a snafu if you are able to have one.   Knowing the purpose of a rehearsal is the first step to deciding.  Do you and your participants

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5 WAYS TO PREPARE TO MEET WITH YOUR OFFICIANT

Be Ready To Share Your Stories Your officiant should get to know you well so that he or she is able to make your ceremony uniquely yours.  Be ready to share the stories of how you met, how you were engaged, who you are as individuals and what you look forward to as a married

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