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Letter from Publisher

February typically conjures thoughts of red hearts, chocolates and other expressions of Valentine’s Day love. So this month’s editorial theme of Conscious Dying had me a bit apprehensive.

The topic isn’t one typically discussed in everyday conversations and family gatherings. It’s often reserved for moments surrounding someone’s passing from this Earth. Even then, most barely deal with it. In the midst of a time of raw emotions we try to make sense of things through a flurry of distracting activity while we begin our grieving process.

Having recently lost several close friends and family members, I wasn’t looking forward to reading anything about dying, yet like the popular movie line, “You had me at hello.” Linda Sechrist’s feature article, “Sacred Passage: Conscious Dying as a Transformative Healing Journey,” had me at the first paragraph.

Eloquently written with deep understanding of the beautified dignity this inevitable stage of life deserves, it opened my mind and heart to the potential of a life well lived being one that embraces now and compassionately prepares us to “gently embrace and tenderly navigate life’s final transition with grace and love.” It explores how we can thoughtfully express care for one another—both those going on and those staying behind.

Steve Ross, a good friend of ours and co-producer of the Walk the Talk speaker series, recently wrote in response to my January publisher’s letter. He shared Henry Scott-Holland’s poem Death Is Nothing At All, a moving piece that encourages our understanding that “All is well.”

It was no coincidence that I received Ross’ note while drafting this letter. His words resonated: “Yes, we have lost too many loved ones over the last couple years. It does encourage me to live a life that matters!” Living a life that counts is certainly a precursor to a meaningful and sacred passing on to what’s next.

Several of the support services noted in the national feature article are available in the Indianapolis community, including a chapter of the national group at ThresholdChoir.org. The Threshold Singers of Indianapolis sing with uplifting inspiration to bring comfort at a time of great need.

Americans are almost as reticent to talk about the aging process. I imagine that most parents, like my folks, don’t talk with their children about what it’s like to grow older. Life coach Elaine Voci’s local feature article, “Key Philosophies in Mindful Aging,” delivers a thought-provoking view of the potential opportunities our mature years offer. Voci, a strong proponent of celebrating life’s journey, also teaches a Conscious Aging class and hosts the quarterly Carmel Death Café.

February, a month closely associated with messages of love. Throughout this edition, I hope you’ll find a wealth of actionable advice, perspective and tips for loving well and living life to the fullest. Other articles ranging from “Fit for Life” to “Indoor Kitchen Gardening” add welcome ideas to nourish mind, body and soul.

Here’s to the journey,

Teona Signature

Teona Wright, Publisher

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