Beth Riungu - A Good Death
Manage episode 317183555 series 3302145
Beth Riungu is a mother, sister, daughter. She’s been a registered nurse, a chef, administrator and is now developing a business as a soul midwife or death doula.
In her twenties she traveled to Africa to learn more about her Kenyan father. As she shared in her blog, her blended Scottish-Kenyan ancestry meant she was “neither a local nor tourist, she was a tribe of one adrift in a nation of many”.
It was 1986, and as she traveled through east Africa with others she met along the way, she found herself in the Luwero Triangle. Brushes with death were frequent. She passed through South Africa, Uganda, and Somalia at times of intense strife and peril. Those experiences were life changing.
“…the atrocities that defied human understanding had not murdered the spirit of hope. The people I met were not trying to reclaim power in their lives through revenge but by rebuilding. Visitors were invited to witness what hate had done, but also what the human spirit could do. My mind couldn’t fully appreciate what that meant at the time but it is a lesson my soul absorbed and it has shaped my life ever since. Lessons from death are always lessons about living.”
When she turned 50, she decided to develop her growing interest in end of life care. She became a hospice volunteer and studied to become a Soul Midwife; a guide, carer and advocate for the dying and their families.
There’s no question that in North America we have a fear of death. An aversion to dealing with it. We hide ourselves from it, from thinking about it, facing it.
The current pandemic, especially at the beginning has forced many of us to contemplate our own mortality. Circumstances have robbed many people of the gift of being present during their loved one’s passage. A process that help us and our loved ones with acceptance, redemption, grief or perhaps a good death.
Beth's writing and business can be found at:
Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest: @morternity
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