Being here, now


Josefine Speyer, founder of the Natural Death Centre shares a snapshot of her life

My husband was killed in a car accident. It was June 2001. I remember the day as if it were yesterday. We’d been married 10 years. We had wanted to grow old together.

The month before we married we launched the Natural Death Centre. Why think and talk about death every day? To us it was about social change. We had an awareness that we were always in the presence of death. That death could come unexpectedly.

So therefore being here now, being alive now, being together now, that was precious to us. When Nicholas suddenly died, we knew what to do. We had in the years since the start of the NDC, helped friends create family-organised funerals and natural burials. We had practice. We wanted to create something for Nicholas’ funeral that was deeply meaningful to us.

It was a healing experience for all who took part.

Nicholas’ mum was 85 at the time. She said it was the best and most beautiful funeral she had ever been to (and her first natural burial!). I agree with her. It was the best funeral we could have created. And we were able to do it ourselves.

Josefine is an experienced psychotherapist and counsellor with a practice in London. She is a Patron of the Natural Death Centre and regularly runs Death Salons, workshops and courses and gives talks on death education.

Stay in control of your choices. Capture your thoughts in your Wishes on Final Fling. Try starting with music you’d like played at your send-off.

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