'Death, Dying, and Dessert' Discussion Group at Livonia Civic Center Library

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Have you ever wanted to talk about a funeral or a friend’s passing but couldn’t find anyone to listen? How about planning ahead and letting people know about your own wishes for end-of-life care? These and other topics are encouraged at Livonia’s new “Death, Dying, and Dessert” discussion group, which began in October, and will continue the second Monday of each month through April 2016. The group will meet in the Michigan Room of the Civic Center Library from 7 – 8:30 p.m. All are welcome. Tea, coffee, and cake are provided, and there is no charge.

Across the country, similar groups have sprung up that promote open conversation about death and dying, including the very popular “Death CafĂ©” and the less well-known “Death and Dying Dinner Parties.” Church and community groups have begun offering advance directives workshops and adult education classes about planning ahead.

“These groups recognize that death, once accepted as a part of life, has become a taboo topic. They aim to change that by normalizing the conversation,” said Merilynne Rush, RN, an experienced death educator, and facilitator of “Death, Dying, and Dessert.” “After all, death is the one thing everyone has in common.”

The “Death, Dying, and Dessert” discussion group is not a grief support group. Neither is it an opportunity to give or receive advice. But those who want a chance to share their story and listen openly to others are encouraged to attend.

“There is no presentation. The participants lead the conversation,” Rush said.

All adults are welcome. For more information, contact Merilynne Rush at (734) 395-9660.

“Death, Dying, and Dessert” is hosted by Angela Hospice.

About Merilynne Rush
Merilynne Rush, RN, is a retired hospice nurse and home birth midwife. She first became interested in home funerals and natural burial in 2008, and now serves on the board of directors of the Green Burial Council. Rush also spent two years on the board of the National Home Funeral Alliance, a nationwide network of those advocating for personal choice in caring for their own dead. Rush holds a bachelor’s in humanities and women’s studies from Michigan State University, and a bachelor’s in nursing from the University of Michigan. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in hospice and palliative care at Madonna University.

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