3 signs you may be a Death Doula
Most of us are familiar with the term Doula: a woman who is trained to assist another woman during childbirth and who may provide support to the family after the baby is born. But some women are more cut out for supporting death than birth. As the veil thins from summer to fall, the new season forces our presence with the dying. Crafting a sacred space for the art of dying is a dying art form. Some of us are being summoned to revive this delicate craft. Let's explore the signs of the summoning.
1. Your favorite people have been dying all your life.
Many natural Death Doulas have had brushes with death since early childhood. Maybe you've lost a parent at an early age. My dad died when I was 18 months old from electric shock. Maybe your high school heartthrob drowned or you saw your favorite dog bleed to death. This early loss of physical connection breeds a ripe terrain for cultivating a compassionate connection with the spirits. It's all we have to go on. Our childlike naivety affords miraculous prices through a youthful suspension of skepticism. Before long, our grayest gardens are lush with guides, guardians, servitors and patron saints.
So you're super connected to the "other side." Even still, your closest folks just keep on flickerin' out. The more death happens, the more confident you become with creating a sacred space for graceful transition. You feel a duty. You're move through the shame of potentially appearing "hippy-dippy" or "witchy" to your family and loved ones. You vulnerably risk persecution by the surrounding muggles and fellow mourners in a brave attempt to facilitate the dying's deeper connection to their own source spirit.
2. The dying die within an hour after your visit.
Surely, the art of dying is a scary thing. We fight it off all our lives. Many people need to be given permission, but that permission isn't granted by an egoic whispering, "Joe, you can go... you can go Joe," as if it was up to us. It's true, some folks hang around for karmic business with soul mates, but most folks hang out because they struggle with finding their own source of connection. Simply put, they're sacred. The dying must be held by their own guides and guardians - their energy entrained to the light of their angels. Therein, fear dissipates and grace births them into the arms of harmony. This is where we find permission to go.
You may be a clear harmonic conduit, a Death Doula, if they die soon after your departure. By the nature of your intuitive heart's compassion, you instinctively help align the dying to their guides. When this happens, they don't hang out in their painful bodies for long. Maybe you were surprised how quickly they let go after just a smidge of energy work. But then, maybe not so surprised because you feel the bliss of angel fire. You've been tinkerin' since your youth. Angelic light feels like a salted, fire-warmed bubble bath after a long day of sweltry hot grain plowin'. Some folks struggle to cross over more than others, but generally, the dying ease right on into transition once they find their own source of power.
3. You feel a strong pull of responsibility to become a clear conduit for angelic connection.
There are many stages to becoming a Death Doula and no clearly defined path, but one thing stays constant: a pull to become a lightning rod, a beacon, a ghost whisperer. An obscenely high level of empathy has challenged you to become extremely forgiving and compassionate. Empaths are hyper-vigilant and easily frazzled.
Your sensitivity has had you hunting down tools to help you keep your footing amidst the calamity of other people's erratic energy. One of the best ways I've found to gain my footing is practicing the Electric Fire breathwork. It's Tibetan. It's Tantric. It's essential. Vast expanses of uninhabited landscapes, or at least uninterrupted "me time" is crucial. Recalibration to our source of power allows us to deep dive into other's sources of power.
As we attune to our own power, we make it easier for other's to harmonize. When one string on a guitar is played, all the other's hum just a little and "entrain" to the foundational note. Death Doulas make it their business to become that perfect pitch foundational note. Another awesome technique is using Incantations. I teach vocal chaos magic course to help liberate the voice to pure heart-based expressions.
The journey may be checkered and treacherous, but if you feel the call and the signs are all there, you just may be one of the blessed few who helps revive the art dying in America.