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April 20, 2023

256. Unlocking the Lessons of Death - Cassie Uhl

Through meditation and energy work, Cassie Uhl unexpectedly found her true calling as a death doula, providing comfort and guidance through the journey of dying. When family members came to her seeking assistance in crossing over, she recognized the...

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Through meditation and energy work, Cassie Uhl unexpectedly found her true calling as a death doula, providing comfort and guidance through the journey of dying. When family members came to her seeking assistance in crossing over, she recognized the importance of honoring both the light and dark aspects of life - a sacred calling that would ultimately transform her life in unexpected ways.

In this episode, you will be able to:

  • Discover the profound impact of death doulas in providing end-of-life support and care.

  • Uncover the crucial role of legacy work in enhancing emotional well-being and healing.

  • Delve into the societal barriers that hinder our connection with death and how to overcome them.

  • Grasp life's cyclical nature and how it can lead to deeper understanding and acceptance of death.

  • Learn to incorporate personalized rituals throughout the dying process for added comfort and solace.

Cassie Uhl is a compassionate and experienced death doula, energy healer, and author whose practice focuses on providing trauma-informed spiritual support throughout life and death. With a deep connection to Earth-based and pagan traditions rooted in her ancestral heritage, Cassie has developed an approach that supports individuals during their most vulnerable moments. Her beautifully designed books and decks cover a wide range of spiritual topics, including crystals, tarot, and the Wheel of the Year, making her an invaluable resource for those seeking guidance on their spiritual journey.

Other episodes you'll enjoy:

252. Reclaiming Your True Self - Kelly Smith

249. Unmasking Your Mind-Body Connection - JJ Flizanes

224. Human Design & Intuitive Decision Making - Patricia Lindner

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00:00:07 Hello and welcome to The Meditation Conversation, the podcast to support your spiritual revolution. I'm Kara Goodwin, and today I'm joined by Cassie Uhl. Cassie is a mother, author, energy healer, and death doula. She offers traumainformed spiritual support for her clients throughout life and death. Her practice is rooted in Earth based and pagan traditions of the land she resides on, and her ancestral roots across northern Europe.


00:00:39 Her books and decks offer accessible and beautifully designed information on spiritual topics, including understanding crystals, auras tarot, and the Wheel of the Year. I'm so happy to have this conversation with Cassie. Take a moment to think about how you felt when you saw that the topic of this episode is death. Did it make you uncomfortable? It is this taboo topic depending on what culture you're in.


00:01:06 Certainly in mine, it's not really something we discuss openly. There's a lot of fear and discomfort around the topic of death. I talk about this with Cassie and the opportunities that we miss by ignoring or dismissing death. Cassie has some really important things for you to think about in terms of planning for your own death or helping someone through dealing with a terminal state.


So welcome, Cassie. I'm so happy to have you here today. Hi, Kara. I'm glad to be here.


00:02:22 Thanks for having me. So tell us a bit about your background and particularly the evolution of your spiritual practice. Yeah, well, try to keep it concise. I know we've talked before, so you know a little bit about it, and it's long and winding. Like so many of ours find a spiritual path, but I was really drawn to spirituality as a young person.


00:02:48 I started meditating at a really young age, like when I was eleven or twelve. My grandma had some books and she was more open to spirituality. So that was sort of my gateway into a different and alternative path besides the Christianity that I was sort of brought up in. And once I found this other path and started reading books and started meditating and working with my own energy, I was just like, oh, this is it. This is it for me, this is my path.


00:03:16 Because it made sense of the world around me. It made sense of the things that I experienced and it answered all the questions that I had about religion that nobody was able to answer for me. So that was really the beginning. And then from there, I've gone through a lot of different transformations and paths. I was a yoga teacher for a while and really into yoga and different Buddhist practices and those have all become part of who I am now.


00:03:45 But now I've sort of fallen more in line with my ancestral spirituality and roots and just connecting with the land that I'm on. So now that's very much where my practice lies and energy work has become a part of that, a beautiful part of it. And working with people at the end of life, which are all sort of things that happened very I was very much initiated by the Spirit Realm into those parts of my work. And I can go on to that more if you want, but those are also long stories, so I can just leave it at that as well. Well, that's fascinating because I love your evolution.


00:04:27 There's so much that where we mirror each other in our stories. I hear a lot of my story in your story, and I find it fascinating that you were able to begin meditating so young and that became like an integral part of your life at such a young age. And you live in Indiana when you mentioned that we have met, we met in person, which is great. A lot of people I have on the podcast I haven't been able to meet in person, but we grew up in Indiana and so you talk about that like Christianity being everywhere and that's my story too. It was like from where I grew up, if you wanted to connect with Spirit, like the traditional pathway that was all around you was Christianity.


00:05:11 And it does seem like at that tender age, a lot of the story within Christianity or the teachings within Christianity can be complicated and parts contradict other parts and it doesn't really easily apply to a young child's everyday life. So that's really fascinating. I would love to hear also about that. You said you were initiated by Spirit, so a lot of you said your grandma opened up the door of spirituality for you and then you went down the road of yoga. So you would have had like, trainings and kind of teachers bringing you along a certain lineage.


00:05:56 I also recognize what you're talking about in terms of learning sort of shifting from external or at least like plant earth external to being initiated or learning things more from the inside. Would you like to share a little more about that? Because I think that's really pertinent. Yeah, I would. It has a lot to do with the book that I'm writing, a new book now, and that is a big part of it, is honoring and leaning into our own innate wisdom or the connections we have with our ancestors from within.


00:06:35 So for me, what that looks like, and I will say I was working with a woman. Her name is Robin Asanowitch. She's linked on my website. If anybody wants to learn more about her. She is my mentor and guide for many, many years.


00:06:50 I still have a relationship with her. So I was working with her at the time of this initiation, and I'm grateful I was because she was the person that I was able to go to when things started to happen. So it was after my children were I think yeah, it was after they were born that things really started to pick up. And I do think there's something to that. I think a lot of women have had that experience, or people who birth have that experience that after that sort of initiation into childbirth, there's an opening, an even greater opening of that connection to spirit.


00:07:24 So it was after that that I had some visitations from people I knew, family members that were in their dying process, spiritual visitations. So in both instances, they were states away, miles away. And the first time it happened, I just thought I had this presence that was just like, I need help. I need help crossing over. I know you can help me.


00:07:50 And I ignored it at first. I was just like, oh, that's just me making it up. Because I'd never had I've had spiritual experiences. I was familiar with working with energy, but I had not had such strong visitation experiences. And so eventually I couldn't ignore it anymore.


00:08:09 And I went into a meditation, and I worked with this family member to help clear their energy channel, to make it easier for them to detach from their physical body. And the next day, we found out that family member had passed on. And I didn't tell anybody because I was just like, what is happening? It was honestly a little bit scary for me because I was just like there were just a lot of layers to it that I was feeling. And then I shrugged it off, and I was like, maybe it was just a coincidence, like, how we do so often, or at least how I have in my spiritual practice those first times, just like, I probably just made it up.


00:08:48 I can't remember how much longer it was. It was maybe a year or less. And I had a similar situation with another family member where I started getting these really strong visitations of like, please help me. I know you can help me cross over. I'm having a hard time.


00:09:04 And so I did the same thing. And again, the next day, we got the call that they had died, and I sat with her for a little while again. And then I decided I was like, it's time that I go to my mentor, Robin, and I met with her. And it was at that meeting with her that she was just if you're ready to deepen your practice, this is your invitation. If you would like to work with me in a traditional way as student teacher where we're working together and I'm training you, I would be happy to do that.


00:09:37 I was just like yes please. Really hungry for some context and some ways to understand this. So that was where my energy healing practice started and it's also where my sort of initiation to working with people at End of Life also started. And I wouldn't say my initiation into working with people at End of Life. I had an interest in working with people at end of Life before that.


00:10:00 But that was sort of it helped contextualize why I had that interest and how I might be able to be of better service to people at end of life is more in an energetic it was probably in 2018 and 2019 that those Experiences Hired. And yeah, I've been working with Robin ever since to varying degrees and just expanding my practice. And I did receive my end of life death doula training through INELDA, which is the international end of life death doula association. And that's been wonderful and helpful. So it's been a really great experience to see how the energy work and the death work continue to unfold and work together.


00:10:49 And I do them separately but I do them together and it's just been really exciting to see how they unfold. That's amazing. Again, another mirror of each other because I've had also a lot of inner experiences that are just organic, they just kind of surprised me. And I have also had a mentor who showed up and it wasn't like I signed up for a class or anything even though I was like, do you have an online class or something? I wanted to learn from him and in my mind I figured he'd have some sort of teachings that were already laid out, perfect world sort of thing.


00:11:33 How can I just get that insight? But he became just invaluable in terms of processing and understanding, giving context to things that were happening without having any prior experience with them. So important. Now I understand from our previous conversation that it took some time to really understand the power of utilizing our trauma and shadows for our spiritual growth. So do you want to talk a little bit about that?


00:12:07 Yeah, certainly I'd be happy to. So I did do just to give credit where credit is due, I did a trauma informed training with Katie Kurtz, who I highly recommend and that's also been really helpful in having a trauma informed practice because in that training I learned that it's not enough to just say I've experienced trauma, therefore I am trauma informed. Because there are so many different intersections and lived experiences that people have that my trauma is very different from the trauma of others. But yeah, my personal trauma and shadow work has been a big part of my spiritual practice and I believe is really what's led me to where I am now. Before those experiences around the visitations, I had a lot of experience with personal loss.


00:12:58 I lost the grandmother that I spoke about who really opened me up to my spiritual path. She passed away of cancer and then less than two months later, my dad died suddenly of a heart attack and also admits that my husband and I were trying to get pregnant and I was struggling with infertility. So there was just a lot going on and it really plunged me into this very long portal of just underworld shadow work fun. I can look back on it now and say it was fun because I've seen the gifts that I've been able to excavate from all of that, but I did. I spent a lot of time in therapy, which I'm a huge advocate for.


00:13:46 It helped me a lot. Unfortunately, my therapist was very open to spirituality, so I felt very much like my spiritual practice was a part of the therapy that I did. And then on my own, my spiritual practice, my meditation practice, my own shadow work practice, that was a part of it as well. But that experience is really what opened me up to the importance of going through those underworld journeys, going through those underworld initiations. I think that those losses that I experienced as those deaths were also very much an initiation, an initiation of a different kind.


00:14:22 But it opened me up to, oh, I can be with grief, I can honor the hard parts of life too, and I can give space for my grief and sadness to be. And it was important for me to see that because I would say prior to that experience, I was very much in more of a New Age love and light spiritual bubble where a lot of that was frowned upon. It was that toxic positivity. And so it took a while for me to unravel that and see how harmful it was to myself and how harmful it was to other people that maybe I was. I've been a blogger for a long time, I've had my business for a long time and how damaging some of these things that I was sharing were for other people too.


00:15:14 So it was really important for me to go through those underworld journey experiences to help integrate and to help see that there's room for both and that both have value, that descending consciousness, that underworld connection and learning is very valuable and important as well. Yeah, thank you for sharing that. Can you talk a little bit more about the, how did you say the toxic positivity? Or is that how you said it? Yeah.


00:15:45 Can you talk a little bit about that? Yeah. So for me, that shows up and the way that I experienced it is just this idea of it comes up a lot in manifesting and a lot of yes spaces like that where it's like if I am not always thinking positive things, then bad things are going to happen to me. Like I have to be always thinking positive, doing positive things, speaking positive things. Otherwise I'm not going to be able to bring positive things to me.


00:16:20 If I'm ruminating in fear and sadness and scarcity, that's what I'm going to draw in. And for me, I learned that by pushing away all of those things and avoiding them, I was really doing myself a disservice. Because when I think now about that underworld journey, there's so much richness in there that's like the richness of my soul. That's where the hidden gems are. I was able to heal parts of myself and see parts of myself that needed to be held and loved and supported.


00:17:03 Especially for me, it's interesting. I went to therapy and I was doing all of this healing work and I went because I lost my dad and my grandma and I was feeling sadness about it. But in the therapy and in the work I was doing on my own, so much of it was inner child healing work. Those experiences are what brought me to the point where I could touch into those places. But I spent some time in therapy working with the grief of losing my dad and my grandma.


00:17:37 But a lot of the time and what that uncovered were all of these deep wounds I had from early childhood. And I may have never gone there had I not honored that call to descend into those feelings of despair, of sadness, of fear. So it was in that, that I found this rich, rich soil. And I always imagine things and compare them to the earth. So I imagine digging up the soil and finding all of these things and I'm like, oh, I didn't know that was there.


00:18:14 I didn't know that this experience from childhood was causing this thing over here to feel so broken. And so when I excavate it and I pull it up and I sift it, I mix it in and I heal it and I love it, then it affects everything out here. I think about the roots going down into the soil. If that soil is cultivated and loved and taken care of, then the whole tree can blossom and grow even further. And that was my experience in learning what it's the importance of tending to the shadows, the things that we avoid, not avoiding those underworld initiations and underworld journeys.


00:18:59 Yeah, thank you for that. That's such a powerful metaphor. The soil I like to think too of like when something is being processed but gets brought up and then like, okay, let's offer this to the earth and let it make compost out of this energy. And that's really powerful. And you're so right.


00:19:21 I think that a lot of people, if they've been on the spiritual path for a little while. They definitely are at least aware of the love and light, where it is like, oh, we're just going to focus on light. And I've been there too, for sure, where it's like, no, we're calling in the light. And I also have recognized that there are things within me that I don't want to look at. This was happening even just last night where some things were coming up and I could feel myself, I really don't want to think about that, the things that had happened years ago, but it was like, no, it's so uncomfortable and I don't want to think about it.


00:20:00 But then I could feel within that what is there, what gifts are there in this? Like, there's something yet to be processed with, that there's something yet to be integrated and to be like, I'm still keeping something away. Energetically, it was like, you're still holding something out and it just keeps it from there are lessons with everything. There are gifts and opportunities and energetically, there are these pathways that open when we do allow and we process and we accept and we allow it to be a part of our experience. And that does neutralize it.


00:20:48 It does help to make it okay if it does pop into our minds, but it's hard work. It's not for the faint hearted, but the rewards are immense. I have noticed that this cognizance that comes, this understanding that comes where when I do allow myself to really see what I've not been wanting to see, that it opens it up to this panoramic understanding of so many different facets of it and how things just like opportunities come up in that acceptance and integration. So there are so many gifts that come from that. And we want to definitely be aware if we are not allowing ourselves to if we're still holding at bay anything that's uncomfortable in favor of love and light, what it is, that what opportunities we're holding ourselves back from.


00:22:04 And the love and the light is real. This is really the whole point of it is it's not like only be in the darkness wallow and really give in to the sadness and so forth. It's not about that. But it's like we have this ability to increase our light by integrating all of us, all parts of us. So it's really beautiful.


00:22:29 Thank you. Yeah. And I was going to say that same thing about it's not that the love and light is bad, it's that we need both. And I also want to push back on something you said just because it's something that I am also personally trying to become more aware of. And it's this idea that doing the shadow work, doing those underworld journeys, are hard work.


00:22:55 Because if I look to my greatest teachers, which are the earth around me, the moon, the stars, we see the moon grow into fullness and descend into darkness, and she does it with ease, both directions. We don't see the moon struggling to fall into darkness. The moon just falls into the darkness and then she grows again into fullness, just like the Earth around us descends into winter and then rebirths into spring. And I think that some of this is just a societal thing that I've learned and absorbed. That because I've had this messaging that love and light is better than the underworld journey.


00:23:41 That the Underworld journey is therefore hard or difficult or something to be ashamed of and something that I'm learning over and over again through leaning into the wisdom of the Earth and watching the Moon and connecting with the energy of all of her faces. Is that is it really harder? Or is it that I've been trained or disillusioned that it's harder? And really, can it be just as beautiful as the full moon? Can that Kara Goodwin phase, is there just as much beauty in there as there is in the full moon?


00:24:23 Because something that I experienced when I realized that I didn't need to be positive all the time, I didn't need to be love and light all the time, I was like, oh, thank goodness. That was exhausting.


00:24:40 Yeah, that's a good point. So I just share that because like I said, it's something that I've noticed within myself that I am trying to relearn and reintegrate is that maybe the dark phases, just like the moon, they're not necessarily harder, they're just different and it's just relearning how to be in relationship with them. Yeah, that's a great point. So let's talk about your work as a death doula. Can you first just explain what that means?


00:25:18 Yeah, absolutely. So I think a lot of us now have an idea of what a birth doula is. A birth doula is somebody who's your advocate, who is your emotional and spiritual support through the birthing process. Well, that is the same role that I fill when people are dying. I am the advocate, I am the spiritual, the emotional support for the dying person and for their loved ones.


00:25:46 So in the same way that a birth doula helps care for and really carry and support the family and the mother through the birthing process, I help carry and support and be a rooted, grounded person through that difficult, not sometimes difficult and just different experience. And there are differences, of course, in the way that looks and appears in relation to a bird's doula. So, for example, one of the things that I do a lot of work with is legacy and legacy projects. And that's really just an opportunity to discuss with the dying person and their loved ones what is your legacy? Is that something that's important to you?


00:26:34 Is there anything that we can discuss or maybe even create that will make your legacy more permanent or more visual? Because there's actually and I can't not bring this up because I just think it's so important. But they've done studies about legacy work and the value of it for folks who are at the end of life. And when loved ones and the folks who are dying are engaged in legacy work, there is a decrease in their pain. Really?


00:27:11 Yes, in their emotions and their happiness and their peacefulness. So there's already been studied that there are real benefits to implementing legacy work at end of life because so much of hospice and there's nothing wrong with hospice. Hospice is amazing. But hospice focuses on the physical. They focus very much on the pain management.


00:27:40 So what legacy work and what the death doula can do is say where are some other ways that we can focus our energy besides just making sure that you're physically comfortable because you are a whole being, you have a spirit, you have emotions. How are those doing today? And how can we support those parts of you throughout this process? And the legacy work is a really powerful way to do that, to give the family and the dying person something else to focus on and hold on to besides just how is your body feeling today? Yes, I love that.


00:28:20 That's very powerful to be able to offer this kind of opportunity for reflection so that they can process their whole life experience and then also feel like they are taking a part of them that will live on like, okay, here's my experience. And it's encapsulated in some way, in some creative way that then we feel like, okay, people who I may not have had the chance to get to know yet, like a grandchild or something, who's too little, but who I love so much. This is a way that when I'm gone, I can share with them what my experience was. And we can have that level of relationship even without my physical presence. And that is really powerful.


00:29:20 I love that. So how do you see death as being a missed opportunity for how we experience life? Oh, yeah, that's a big question with so many doors to walk through. One of the things I've been sitting with is and it goes back to what I was saying about the full moon versus that Kara Goodwin and how we say, oh, the full moon is one is better than the other. And I've just been thinking so much about how when somebody is pregnant, we do all the things we are excited for them, we have the parties and the showers, but when people are dying, we tuck them away a lot of times we certainly don't have celebrations except for maybe after they've passed.


00:30:18 And when I think about that and I think about the time I've spent with people at end of life, it just, it breaks my heart because there's so much happening just like a birth, there's so much happening on different levels, on the, on a physical level, on emotional level, on a spiritual level. And I think because at death, similar to birth, people are so open, a lot of times it brings us to a place of vulnerability and openness that a lot of times we're not able to get to in the day to day in day to day life, because, like birth, it forces us to slow down. When we're dying, we have to slow down. And just as in birth, there comes a point for most people where, okay, we got to slow down. I'm too big.


00:31:17 I can't move anymore, or, I just gave birth. I need to slow down. I've got this tiny human, and the same thing happens at death. We slow down, and then there becomes this opening, and within that opening, there's just so much potential and possibility for healing, for peace, for that legacy work, for reflection time. And by tucking away the death, by not talking about it, we're missing that opportunity.


00:31:52 And I don't think too I don't think we have to wait for death to have those conversations, because we have these cycles and many deaths that happen throughout our lives. We have these different initiations. I thinking puberty menstruation going from mother to elder and being initiated into that crone phase. We have all of these opportunities where parts of our lives die. And again, we have that opportunity.


00:32:24 We have that opening. We have that portal of what's? Here in this death phase? What am I letting go? What opening is that creating?


00:32:32 What am I calling in?


00:32:36 So I think, of course, there's so much opportunity at the actual physical death of our bodies, but I think that it can also be carried into a lot of other areas into our life, so that when we get to that final, the big death, we're a little bit more familiar with it. If we can bring those cyclical experiences and welcome death as part of our lives, then when we get to that big death, it's like, oh, I'm familiar with you. I know you. I've danced with you before. Yeah, that's beautiful.


00:33:18 Do you have thoughts about what causes us to ignore the reality of death, particularly in Western culture? I have lots of thoughts, yeah. I don't know how much everybody will want to hear, I'm not the end all, be all on this. But in my personal experiences learnings, I see patriarchy, white supremacy, colonialism, a lot of these systems that we are embedded in, that we've grown up in as being the most detrimental to our relationship with death and inherently our relationship with our humanity, because death is part of our humanness and we've really been severed from it before patriarchy was really took hold. And I'm thinking about even in where I come from, which is throughout northern Europe, there is more of a balance.


00:34:23 The goddess was accepted as a key role. It wasn't just a male god. It was the goddess in relationship with all of these. Other beings, and the cyclical nature of life and death was honored. But in patriarchalized world that we live in now, we have this linearity that we've been severed from the cyclical nature of living.


00:34:57 So I'm not an expert on these systems. I've learned from a lot of people who are. Sarah Durham Wilson is one of my teachers who I've learned a lot from about just reconnecting with the goddess. And I've also learned from Therese Couture, who has been a wonderful teacher in understanding my role in connection to white supremacy. So those have been some of the teachers that I've learned from and would send people to, because that is not my expertise, but that is what I feel has been a source of our severance from death and dying and the importance and power that it has.


00:35:43 And also capitalism. I mean, how do we have time for dying if we're meant to be producing all the time? There's no time for dying because dying requires slowness. It requires us to stop doing. Yeah.


00:36:03 Thank you. I love how you relate that our relationship with death, with so many other aspects of life and real humanity, the real human experience that we have, this illusion crafted with the time that we've been born into it's. Like we have been just immersed in this illusion of man made what a life experience is supposed to be, which is very much removed from the natural world. So it makes sense that our relationship with death just is a byproduct of our relationship with nature and the cycles and so forth. That's beautiful.


00:36:48 Do you see things changing culturally in terms of the acceptance of death? I kind of feel like it's coming. I don't know. But you're closer to it than I am. I don't know if there's been much movement lately in that way.


00:37:06 Yes and no. It's a real both, and I do see shifts, but then sometimes I'm like, oh, we're not there yet. We're in this real titration phase of, like, dipping a toe in because I know the interest is there because when I say I'm a death duel, people want to know. People want to talk about what's that? And I do volunteer work with a local hospice, and even with them, I've done a talk for their staff about what the death duels are.


00:37:40 So there's interest. There's interest. So the wheels are turning, I think, but at the rate that I would like it to be, no, but I know it's happening because even with all the interest there, the people that are like, okay, well, I'm ready to pay you some money to do this death duel. And that's something I hear from other I've heard it from other death duels. They're like, it's so weird.


00:38:06 It's like people are interested. They want to hear about it, they want to talk about it. But then when it comes to actually paying for the service, there's sometimes a disconnect there of people think it sounds nice, but they don't necessarily want to go there. And again, I think this goes back to culturally, it's a big hurdle to get over because we've spent almost our entire lives avoiding talking about death. So why would you want to give somebody your money to talk about death?


00:38:41 Yeah, it's fascinating because we do I'm thinking back to times when someone is dying and culturally, how we've been entrained to deal with that. It's like there's this well, don't bring it up. Don't make them think about it. Act like everything's normal. And that's the culturally appropriate way, at least the way that I was.


00:39:06 I don't even want to say raised because I think that puts too much on my parents. But just the culture I've been indoctrinated to is like, oh, they're dying, or someone that they love is dying. They're going through a hard time, let's distract them, is kind of the default. Like, let's make them feel better. Let's take them out of what's happening with them.


00:39:30 And so then that is a hurdle or, like, a boulder for people who are doing that type of work, because there's a whole and cultural indoctrination that's like, wait, not only am I supposed to look at this, but is it appropriate for me again, like, the cultural societal way that we look at it? Am I doing the right thing by putting this in their face? The person who's dying? Okay, it's time to think about how you're dying. Now, I would imagine there's a fear there about, is that the right thing to do?


00:40:02 Rather than understanding the opportunity and this nurturing that is available to say, okay, this is the reality, and it's an important time and it's a potent time, and we could really get a lot out of this time, like the person who is dying and the people who are dealing with that impending loss. It's like this is an opportunity to kind of your experiences and get some closure, to feel okay about what is happening. So I hadn't really thought about that until you're bringing that up. But yeah, we do have a lot to get over, I think. And I think that it ties in a lot to the work that people are doing on themselves, but all feeds in.


00:41:00 But that's really interesting. Yeah. And even I don't think I touched on it. But part of moving through that boulder because sometimes we can't go over, we got to move through it, is that on the other side of that. And it's like the birth doula, too.


00:41:20 The birth doula helps you make your birth your own. And as a death doula, I'm like, it's your death. How do you want it to feel? How do you want it to look? It's an opportunity to reclaim that experience.


00:41:37 And that's what the birth doula does. The birth doula helps the birthing person reclaim and say, this is my experience and I want it to look and feel the way I want it to look and feel. And that is, again, that missed opportunity at death is we're just saying I don't know how to die. I don't know. And I'm saying, no, you can.


00:42:01 Let's talk about it. Let's get into the hard, uncomfortable stuff and make this death your own. Who do you want to be there? What do you want? Do you want sense?


00:42:13 Do you want light? Do you want music? Make it your own. But if you don't talk about it, that's again, that missed opportunity. I don't want to say it like there's something wrong with it, but like you said, I think a missed opportunity is a nice way of putting it.


00:42:32 There's a lot of potential there for healing, for taking something that so many of us view as hard and difficult. And again, finding the beauty in it, finding the beauty in the dying process, because there is I get teary eye bicky about it because I've seen it. There's beauty there, then we can make a lot of meaning out of it. And ritual is a big part of the work. I do too, because I think there's a lot of ritual is a really beautiful way.


00:43:08 It's a really nice way to find that beauty and create the beauty of the experience of dying. Yeah, that's amazing. Do you have any recommendations for people who are dealing with the dying process right now? Either themselves or a loved one? We talked about that legacy, which I think is really powerful and of course connecting with a death doula to really help to nurture that process.


00:43:37 But is there any kind of low hanging fruit that jumps out at you as like yes, this is something that's often overlooked. Yeah. And this can happen at any time in life. Like I said, I'm not even going to say you don't have to wait till you're dying to start thinking about this. I'm going to say don't wait till you're dying.


00:44:03 Advanced directives. Who do you want to be responsible for you? If you are not able to speak for yourself, that's a big low hanging fruit. Who do you want to be making decisions for you? And have you had a conversation with that person about what you want to happen if you are not able to answer for yourself?


00:44:32 That is a big part of reclaiming your death and dying experience because it forces you to face the fact that A, you're going to die someday and that you don't know what that death process is going to look like for you, you might not be in a position to verbalize what you want. So by taking the time when you are able to think about it, to think about who do I trust with those big decisions and do I need to have a conversation with them today, do I need to write it out? And I would say yes, please have a conversation with those people and write it out. And that might not sound spiritual or fancy or frilly, but talk about low hanging fruit. That is a good starting place because that is going to be really big part of possibly a big part of your death experience, depending on what state your body is in and your mind is in when you are on the cusp of death.


00:45:39 Yeah, I love that. Thank you for that. I mean, it's funny because we think about this in terms of our stuff, our money and our property and all of that, our children. What do we people maybe have planned that out, particularly the further you get in life in terms of your age, but yeah.


00:46:05 How much are we planning for those personal parts of what is this actually going to be like? It's kind of whitewashing. Like, taking care of our stuff, our property, our money and things like that is whitewashing. That whole experience, we're like, oh, yeah, I mean, I've planned for dying, but it's like your stuff that may be engulfed in flames by that point anyway, who knows? But what about you and your journey?


00:46:34 Yeah, that's wonderful. Yeah. So this has been so rich and amazing. I thank you so much. Please tell people how they can connect with you.


00:46:49 Yeah, the best place is just my website, which is Cassieule.com. Can learn more about all of my offerings, deftulate energy work, my books that I have out, and I'm fairly active on Instagram. The Gram is oh, man, it's really testing me. I don't know how much lost there at Cassie. And then I have an fairly active newsletter.


00:47:14 So in a podcast you can find the podcast and the newsletter if you go to the website@Cassie.com. So those are the best places to find me and interact. Awesome. Well, thank you so much. I'll have links to the resources in the show notes for easy access, but I thank you so much.


00:47:36 This has been wonderful. Cassie, thank you. Thanks for having me. It was really fun to talk, Kara.



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Cassie Uhl


Cassie Uhl is a mother, author, energy healer, and a death doula living on Native Miami land in Carmel, IN, of the so-called United States. She offers trauma-informed spiritual support for her clients throughout life and death. Her practice is rooted in earth-based, animist, and pagan traditions of the land she resides on and her ancestral roots across Northern Europe. Cassie's books and decks offer accessible and beautifully designed information on spiritual topics, including Understanding Crystals, Auras, Tarot, and the Wheel of the Year. Learn more about Cassie's work, or book a session at cassieuhl.com.