Visual Storytelling for Advance Care Planning
Welcome to the newest element of my work! I continue to learn and grow. Most recently, I have become interested and immersed in supporting individuals in planning for their lives—the end of their lives as they hope for it to be, their experiences with illness and suffering, and the lives they wish to live now.
My mission, in all my work, is to provide a path for personal discovery and transformation. I hope you will join me on the journey.
If you’re curious to learn about how I turned toward these areas of interest…
In 2020, I registered for the course, Living Fearlessly, offered by the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care. The experience was life-changing. While already a formal Zen student, the readings, speakers, and conversations gave me new perspectives on the areas of advanced care planning, dying, death, suffering, grief, relationships, communication, and living life even more fully. Our assignment to create our own obituaries became a visual history of my life. It was thought-provoking and a whole new level of engagement with end-of-life issues, as I was thinking about how I had lived and was living my life. The interactions and my reflections brought me beyond my earlier personal experiences.
In that same fall, I joined an informal group of visual practitioner colleagues to explore the area of graphically recording the wishes, hopes, and dreams of those near the ends of their lives and those thinking ahead to how they wanted to live their final weeks and days. In co-creating VEOLI (Visualizing End of Life Issues), we started to think more deeply and broadly about end-of-life issues, connect with, and learn from, other professionals in this field.
Since then, I have expanded my skills to include:
- facilitating conversations about end-of-life planning and graphically recording those experiences
- developing and delivering sessions in creating visual obituaries (Sharing the Memories of Our Lives)
- graphically recording life celebrations (online memorial services)
- starting to draw and write my observations from my internship as a chaplain.
Here is a small variety of my pieces of work in this visual storytelling genre.