March Meeting: Preparing for Death with New PSAS Chart

March 10, 2015, 7-9 p.m., at the home of Nancy Manahan and Becky Bohan, 21 East Rustic Lodge Ave, Minneapolis

Nancy & Diane, a month before Diane's death. Photo by Becky.

A helpful new tool, the Personal Self-Assessment Scale (PSAS), will be available at the meeting. This simple one-page chart can 1) clarify your wishes, 2) guide your choice of a health care agent (not necessarily your spouse or child), and 3) provide an easy opening for The Conversation with loved ones. It also can help you be more prepared and competent when someone you love is dying.

Although we can fill out an advanced directive by ourselves, MTN members find that working in community allows us to hear other points of view and find more clarity for our own questions.

A free Personal Self-Assessment Scale, created by emergency room physician Monica Williams-Murphy, M.D., author of It’s Ok to Die, is available at the It’s OK to Die website.

For short videos of people making end-of-life decisions and having thoughtful conversations with their loved ones, visit Honoring Choices Minnesota.

Meeting Minutes of November 18, 2013

18 in attendance

The Letter

Linda Bergh and Kathy Huset shared their experiences from last year’s class, where they and several others worked on a letter to their Health Care Agent(s) and loved ones explaining their wishes for end-of-life care. The letter takes an Advance Directive to a deeper level, to the heart level. In small groups we discussed what we might include in such a letter. Several people want to meet together to work on their letter and Advance Directive.

Upcoming Events

There will be NO regular meeting of the Minnesota Threshold Network in December. Instead, you are invited to a presentation on Home Vigils and Green Burials at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Community, December 9, 6:30-8:30 p.m. by Rep. Carolyn Laine and Nancy Manahan.

January 13, 2014: Linda Bergh’s home (4315 Xerxes Avenue South, Minneapolis) 7 p.m. We are inviting members of the Funeral Consumer’s Alliance of Minnesota to share their recent price survey of 80 Twin Cities Funeral homes and discuss common interests, including whether Minnesota should require funeral homes to post prices on their websites. On January 1, 2013, California became the first state to legislate such a requirement.

February 10, 2014: Marianne Dietzel’s home (2954 Hamline Ave, Roseville) 7 p.m. Movie night with clips from Amour, winner of the 2013 Oscar for best foreign film. Hospice workers and volunteers will share their end-of-life experiences and perspectives on death.

March 10, 2014: Becky Bohan’s and Nancy Manahan’s home (21 East Rustic Lodge Ave., Minneapolis) 7 p.m. Topic to be announced.

Other

Ellen Goodman’s The Conversation Project provides a kit for starting conversations with loved ones about final wishes. Information is at The Conversation Project.

OktoDie.com is a wonderful website tied to the book It’s Okay to Die, whose author, Monica Williams-Murphy, M.D., was a keynote speaker at the National Home Funeral Alliance annual conference in Raleigh, NC. Marie Jacobsen and Grace Schmitt shared their impressions of the NHFA conference.

We discussed Death Cafés, a nation-wide movement in which people gather once a month at a designated public spot to talk about death. Some people want to connect with the Death Café in the Twin Cities. For more information, see Death Cafe.