Gratitude, humor and a lively discussion about death!
Death Cafe Cincinnati resumed meetings on September 26 at the Pleasant Ridge library. Eight people attended and we had a lively, organic conversation about death.
We shared resources with each other and I thought you might find them helpful.
First, we talked about the humorous side of death. Even in the depths of difficulty and sadness, there are those who find a lighter way to move through it.
A novel: “The Whole Town’s Talking” by Fannie Flagg (author of Fried Green Tomatoes). Here is a blurb about the book:
With her wild imagination, great storytelling, and deep understanding of folly and the human heart, the beloved Fannie Flagg tells an unforgettable story of life, afterlife, and the remarkable goings-on of ordinary people. In The Whole Town’s Talking, she reminds us that community is vital, life is a gift, and love never dies.
A memoir: “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and Other Lessons from a Crematory” by Caitin Doughty. Here’s a description:
Armed with a degree in medieval history and a flair for the macabre, Caitlin Doughty took a job at a crematory and turned morbid curiosity into her life’s work. She cared for bodies of every color, shape, and affliction, and became an intrepid explorer in the world of the dead. In this best-selling memoir, brimming with gallows humor and vivid characters, she marvels at the gruesome history of undertaking and relates her unique coming-of-age story with bold curiosity and mordant wit. By turns hilarious, dark, and uplifting, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes reveals how the fear of dying warps our society and "will make you reconsider how our culture treats the dead" (San Francisco Chronicle).
You Tube Channel: Caitlin Doughty also has a popular show/podcast called “Ask a Mortician” which you can access here: https://www.youtube.com/c/AskAMortician
Second, we discussed the real pain of grieving someone we love. Many resources exist for the grief journey and this book was shared as being deep and helpful.
A non-fiction book: “Grief is Love: Living with Loss” by Marissa Renee Lee. Here is a brief description:
In Grief is Love, author Marisa Renee Lee reveals that healing does not mean moving on after losing a loved one--healing means learning to acknowledge and create space for your grief. It is about learning to love the one you lost with the same depth, passion, joy, and commitment you did when they were alive, perhaps even more.
The theme that came through as expressed in the evaluation forms was GRATITUDE. Gratitude for life, living and being able to talk about it.