END-OF-LIFE & DEATH CARE

Experiencing death (whether sudden or expected, whether ours or another person's) can rupture many things from within us. For some people death is turbulent, undefined, heartache; for others, it is betraying, exposing, or unveiling. Even still, some may welcome death as a trusted friend. Death can be a manifestation, guide, and, in some traditions, a direct connection to what is sacred. Perhaps, a place where we bring forth our desires and memories to honor and bear witness over and over again. Sunflower Services aims to introduce clarity surrounding the emotion, spirit, and physiology of death. 
 
Advance Directive
Advance Directive planning services include education surrounding the process and planning for a person's physical treatment during medical emergencies, their end-of-life time, and/or their eventual death.  These planning sessions are developed to support one-on-one or small group walkthroughs completing Advance Directives for your and/or your loved one's care.  Together with your doula, you will complete and have notarized the written legal documents that outline what a person wants or doesn't want if in the future that person can't make their own wishes known about medical treatment.
 
These sessions range from 1hr to 3hrs on average and are great for anyone who is hoping to put their wishes in writing or begin a conversation about the logistics of planning for medical emergencies, end-of-life, and/or death.​  Some of the legal documents include the Power of Attorney for Healthcare, Power of Attorney for Finances, Advance Directive, and/or POLST forms.  Depending on each person's physical, emotional, and cognitive health the necessary legal documents may be different, we can help to identify which are needed.
 
Advance Directive planning may also include facilitation for creating a death plan.  Death plans expand upon the Advance Directive through additional documents that can include things otherwise not mentioned in legal forms.  Such documents may include identifying comfort needs, outlining preference of choices in medical and/or end-of-life care, finding access to resources, creating a memorial and/or vigil plan, and more.
 
End-of-Life Ceremony / Memorial Planning
For many, planning the ways we wish to be remembered and/or caring for those who have died can move us through grief in ways that bring comfort.  Some choose to work in collaboration with a trusted funeral home, while others may choose home memorials for comfort, affordability, ease, and more.  We are happy to support you, whatever your choice may be.
 
End-of-Life Planning may include legal information and guidelines, creating a death plan of action (DPoA), meeting 1:1 and write-ups, respite for caregivers, incorporation of your traditional & religious practices, creating a unique celebration or ceremony, working alongside doulas, hospice, funeral director(s),  or a hospital team​.  In addition, your doula can offer tools and techniques for processing grief, emotional stress, and end of life rituals or preparation, and will work with you to create and implement a plan that fits your needs regardless of the location.​​
 
Creating a personalized celebration or ceremony includes the incorporation of your wishes, beliefs, cultural background, and inclusion of any traditional, religious, or non-religious practices. Above all, it should reflect the wishes of the deceased and any loved ones they choose. Together we will carefully craft a eulogy, music, quotes, and readings or rituals-- each component will be a genuine, well-prepared tribute to your life or the life of your loved one.
Grief Discernment
Together we can work on planning or documenting your grief, building an interconnected web of support, and creating a care plan. Your doula can act as a companion, advocate, or accountability partner and will answer questions and uplift your choices when it may be time to transition to the next phase of your care plan.
 
Doulas are often members of an interconnected, interdisciplinary group of specialists and professionals that provide guidance and support. Accordingly, they may assist you or your support team in developing an individualized plan of care. Individualized plans may include needs assessment, exploring how grief shows up for you, spiritual consultations, connecting to resources in your community, and/or other activities that facilitate connection to a person's agency, body, and emotions.
Legacy Projects
Legacy Projects are a way to share a person's unique life story using mixed media. This legacy project can be thematically developed to support any big or small grief, including post-traumatic grief processing. Media Options for legacy projects include visual, audio, or text-based story sharing, compiling scrapbooks, and recording interviews. In addition, your doula may offer information about physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional expectations for grief, methods for collaborating with loved ones, grief lore and traditions, and more.
Personalized Youth Curriculum
Death is a natural part of life cycles. Very young children react to the grief they witness and pick up on from older children and adults around them. Young people may learn about death through experiences with plants, pets, and people. If you would like to discuss the topic of death and dying with youth in your life, and aren't sure where to start, collaborating with a doula may help to build a framework for your conversation.
 
By creating a unique caretaker curriculum for death, dying, and grief you will offer the children in your life a framework to begin exploring these topics or processing a terminal diagnosis. This is a collaborative process resulting in a fully developed a unique educational offering which incorporates your beliefs and values about death and dying with evidence-based information about anatomy, relationships, and consent. Previous frameworks include: Intimacy & BiomimicryDeath in Spiritual Life, and The Life Cycles of Plants, Insects, and Animals
About Death Care
Summer Diegel is a full-spectrum doula who has worked in end-of-life care for over 8 years. They have supported in home care support, grief ministry, vigils, and memorial guidance. A doula who supports in the experience of death may offer a variety of services and accompaniment options. Summer primarily offers death care services to those who are experiencing unexpectedly difficult or life-limiting changes, especially related to (but not limited to) that person's own death, or the death of a loved one. Sunflower Services aims to introduce clarity surrounding the emotion, spirit, and physiology of death. We offer tools and techniques for processing grief, emotional stress, and end of life rituals or preparation. 
All Sunflower Services care practices are developed using a consent framework while considering the agency and awareness each individual carries about their body, story, and needs. End-of-Life and Death care services are created for bodies of all shapes and sizes, welcome all ages, and support all gendered and non-gendered persons. Please reach out on our contact page to schedule a phone call and discuss how together we wish to cultivate tools and techniques that fit your need. Check out our unique services or click here to learn more. 
We aim to make our services accessible to community members at all levels of income; everything we offer is available at a sliding-scale rate. Clients paying full price help support this being an option. In addition, we work in a community with Pearl Collective and other local organizations to collectively meet the unique care needs of each client.
 
 
 
 
 
SUMMER DIEGEL, FULL SPECTRUM DOULA
The namesake of Sunflower Services is the Helianthus Annus, the common sunflower from North America which is recognized by the bold petals dancing around the center. This name was chosen to honor a gift of the earth that invokes feelings of safety, inspiration, and awe. Seeing them brings warmth to our soul in a way that only the sun can rival. Thank you for being here.

©2018 by Sunflower Services, LLC.