On Wednesday 13th November we held our first public event "Let's talk about Death, Baby" at Muxima in Bow. We already knew that there was a desire and appetite to create a space where people can talk about taboo subjects. Topics that are normally left unsaid or at best results in a #cringe moment, as you try and navigate a conversation that all parties feel extremely awkward about. We are exploring this through creating open spaces for people to come and talk through these things, with essentially- strangers (AND IT WORKS!)
Even though torrential rain started pouring down just as the event begun, a fabulous bunch of 15 people rocked up, despite the rain, ready to find out what this, "Let's talk about death, baby" thing was all about.
Our very own co-pilot, Helen Fisher spoke so movingly as we explained who we were, and why we were there....here's my favourite part:
"But as you move through the ongoing journey that is grief there are some glaringly obvious flaws in the system. And the first is people really don't know what to say. It creates an exclusion zone of awkwardness that is only penetrated by very close friends or people who are robust enough to deal with any potential fall out. I felt uncomfortable mentioning it (and still often do) , not because how i feared I might respond but how uncomfortable I may make others feel. In the situation of a dead parent in my early 30's I became the benchmark amongst friends, the leader in a race that I really would have preferred not to have entered. A club that no one wants to join. Slowly, over the years I have gained more members to my exclusive club. It's VIP entry and the eligibility criteria is strict, and brutal."
Using the wonderful Crucial Conversations tools, from www.huunuu.com we broke out into small groups to get the conversations started. I'm so grateful that everyone came with open minds, and really got stuck in. I am also grateful to all of the team at Huunuu, and particularly Clare Turner, who have been very supportive as we get set up, and are allowing us to use their beautiful materials in our sessions, as key partners. Check out their website- maybe even make your funeral plan!
Check out some of our feedback on the slideshow below:
We got some excellent feedback, as well as some food for thought for our next events, for now we are planning our next run of sessions in 2020, we'll update the website as soon as we can, and if you're interested in coming along, give us a follow @thelossproject1 on Twitter or subscribe to our newsletter.
With special thanks to Helen Fisher @snapstorelondon, Muxima @muximamuxima, Hunnuu @hunnuudotcom and everyone who joined us, and of course Rufus the cat- it was great to meet you all.