The Cook Awakening

Your Year To Live

a home study course

Whether you have a diagnosis or not, you’re finding yourself curious about, challenged by, or in fear of the idea of death. It’s coming home to you that “Everyone dies someday” actually means, “One day I’M going to die. ME.”

Lake Winnipesaukee sunset

Beautiful endings

You may feel a lurking anxiety, and you’re working to keep the thoughts at bay. You might have gotten your affairs in order, have your Living Will and Advanced Directives filled out (or you don’t, and you’re trying to push THOSE thoughts away). Perhaps you’ve talked about it with friends or a counselor. You might even work in the field of death and dying, as a hospice nurse or something similar. But, you still feel unsettled about the idea of your death.

What would be possible for you if you could approach your own eventual death with curiosity and acceptance?

The fact of death won’t go away by trying not to think about it. The fear of death isn’t really “solved” by practical planning for it. And, we are in a death phobic culture, so often our friends and even some counselors are not really equipped to address our feelings and wonderings effectively, because their underlying anxiety colors whether they can look at death directly with you.

Because death and dying touches on our deepest vulnerabilities, there are a few things that really help you to face it with dignity. Your Year to Live includes all these things.

Straight up information to demystify challenging topics… that are only mysterious because we haven’t learned about them yet.

Some ways to work with fear, so our minds can be steady.

Clear action steps, so we don’t remain frozen.

A strong container to rest in so we feel safe to feel what might be uncomfortable.

You don’t have to be religious to take this course. Having an openness to the idea of spirituality is helpful, I draw from an eclectic array of traditions, most strongly from Buddhism. I was inspired to create this offering by the book A Year to Live, written by Stephen Levine. In honor of his influence, and my own training, a lot of what you’ll hear is taken from Buddhist traditions. The Buddha taught about how to work with difficult mind states skillfully, like fear, ignorance and aversion — all those feelings that tend to come up when we are faced with the idea of death. We’ll touch on other traditions as well, but my intention is to draw threads together where all spiritual paths overlap, rather than indulging in any kind of dogma.

You will learn a number of different forms of meditation. These will work on a deeper level if you can do them on a regular basis, but you’ll still benefit from the course if you don’t have, or don’t care to add a daily practice to your life. We’ll reframe the definition of meditation you may have heard. You’ll learn that anyone can meditate! Even you, if you’re someone who has thought, “I can’t meditate. I’ve tried.”

The recordings are designed to be listened to during time set aside for yourself. You’ll create sacred space — space in which to write, make art, sit quietly, lie down. Space in which to contemplate one of the deepest questions you’ll ever be presented with — what do you need to do to feel ready to face the inevitable end of your life one day?

Fear may come up for you. Fear comes up for most people when faced with the reality of death, if they’re honest. The course will offer time honored practices and techniques to be with, even embrace your fear, in a way that is gentle, soothing, and nourishing for the heart.

The cost is $148 for:

links to 13 recordings, one delivered to your inbox each month

monthly insights and prompts for contemplation delivered with the links to the recordings

access to a private Facebook group with myself, and others who have taken the course in the past or are currently participating.

You can pay $148 in one payment, or in 3 installments of $50 each through PayPal over the first 3 months of the course.

Each recording is about an hour long, except for one that runs about an hour and twenty minutes.

More support is available! You can have one on one sessions with me via Zoom video conference service at my regular counseling fee structure.

Interested? Fill out the inquiry form to the right and I’ll get back to you within a couple days with next steps. (I often don’t respond to emails or calls on the weekends, as a part of my self-care.)

Complimentary First-time Telephone Consultations!
To set one up, contact me with times that work for you and your reasons for reaching out.

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“The “Your Year to Live” class has really been helpful and provided something I didn’t know I needed. Talking about death and its many facets is useful, but engaging the subject deeply with a small group over time is very satisfying. A lot of nagging questions and feelings have been addressed and a richer view of that other end of life has been put in place.”

Susan M., Graphics Professional, Beaverton, OR

This group has been such a great process around death, dying and grief. I heartily recommend it. Durga Fuller is a fantastic facilitator. It’s been thought provoking on so many levels. Durga provides a safe place for process and ceremony and I look forward to our monthly class.

Rachael C., Early Childhood Educator, Newberg, OR