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Beautiful Landscape


About Me

Why did I want to become an End-of-Life Doula? The fact is, I’ve been one for most of my life. My mom had a massive heart attack when I was 12 years old. She survived, but was greatly limited in what she could do. 

Over the years, I documented 12 pages of health issues, doctor appointments, specialists, medications, and notes while caring for her until her end of life. When Mom passed away, I realized I had a natural gift for caring for people and helping them during a difficult time. I searched for ways to make a career of taking care of people, and an End-of-Life Doula is what I found. 

As my mom and I went through her life, one of the things that I noticed was that we were always making decisions mid-crisis, which is never the best time for that. Even when things were planned, I always felt like I wasn’t getting all the information to make the right decisions. I didn’t always know the right questions to ask, the agencies to go through, or the resources that would have helped along the way. There had to be easier ways to get answers, or someone who could help me get the answers. 

In August 2020, I found Doulagivers and enrolled in the Doulagivers Specialist Courses. These included the Certified End-of-Life Doula Care (CEOLD), Elderly Care, and Care Consultant classes. Since passing those courses in 2021, I have also become certified through the National End of Life Doula Alliance (NEDA). Before Doulagivers, I had a 22-year career at Vanguard as a project manager and graphic designer. I managed the creation of top-quality print and electronic communications from start to finish within the marketing arena. 

Currently, I’m the program chair of graphic design and web programs at the Lansdale School of Business, where I am also an instructor. I encourage students to use their talents to create individual projects with an eye toward creating a meaningful portfolio that will help them attain employment. 

Through my Doulagivers training and my background in marketing communications and teaching, I’m able to offer my patients and their families a unique support system. Hosting monthly Death Cafes is another way I plan to help the community understand more about the end of life - that everyone can have a peaceful death and no one should be afraid to talk about their desires in their last days. 



So my friend Heather Manners is starting her own business offering end of life doula services. (Don't worry; while I could make a good guess, I didn't quite know all the things that entailed when she first mentioned it, either. Usually I think of doulas as the nice, well-informed, probably pretty hippie-vibes lady who helps expectant mothers deliver their kiddos. Turns out, some doulas help people leave this world as well as coming into it.)


The thing is, when she and I were colleagues, I watched her deal with the slow passing of her mother over the span of several years due to serious illness. She faced a gut-wrenching situation with more love, compassion, patience, and strength than I think I could ever muster, and it's exactly those sorts of qualities that combine into what we call grace.


While I really hope you don't need her services? If you're in similarly difficult circumstances regarding the care of a loved one, she is exactly the sort of person you want on your side and you should consider reaching out when she has her new site all set up. ~Melanie

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