Pre-planning a memorial service

By Chaplain Diane GunsolleyI was blessed with a wonderful grandmother named Lucile. She was upbeat and lived life to the fullest. She was also one of the kindest and most thoughtful people I’ve known.
March 9, 2019

Why Your Funeral Director Will Likely Be Female

Funeral director Jan Smith of Flanner Buchanan in Indianapolis guides a casket into a hearse. [Photo credit: courtesy of Jan Smith][/caption]By Kevyn Burger for Next AvenueJan Smith was in the final semester of her training to be a funeral director when her 8-year-old nephew died after a heart transplant.Her family’s heartbreak deepened her understanding of the value of the work she was preparing for.
March 26, 2018

Sharing words of wisdom and humor

One of our newest residents, Carl Erwin, recently shared “Book #1,” a compilation of his funny one-liners, words of wisdom and tidbits of humor.His face lit up as he remembered the situations from which he collected the content for his book. “It is important to always be positive and uplifting, and if words can do that, then I feel accomplished,” he said.
March 19, 2018

How a Daughter Helped Her Mom Face Death

“I have a question for you, Aim,” Mom said from her blue La-Z-Boy. “How did you stay so positive during everything you went through?” This takes me by surprise. “Uh, Prozac?” I joke, and she laughs. She needs to laugh. I know she is scared and depressed, awaiting her next chemo treatment. Twenty years ago, she battled uterine cancer, but stayed cancer-free ever since, a miracle. Three months ago, she was diagnosed with cancer again: non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. “I’m serious,” Mom said, and my brain begins its search for an answer.
March 15, 2018

How to Be Supportive to Friends Experiencing Loss

Loss is an inescapable part of life. Whether we’ve lost someone to death, or are going through a living loss such as divorce, retirement, a life-threatening illness, a debilitating injury or a life-altering condition like dementia or addiction, support can make all the difference in helping us summon the strength, faith and courage to fight our way back into life.
February 1, 2018