- Educate the public with unbiased information about their rights and responsibilities concerning practical preparation for the end of life, using an E-book and Power Point presentation ~ both illustrated with original cartoons ~ as well as personal consultations.
- Pre-Need ~ Guide our clients through the maze of decisions surrounding the end of life ~ so that their loved ones, in a state of grief, confusion and exhaustion, won’t be forced to make those decisions for them ~ and get their decisions in writing in a Last Wishes Declaration.
- At-Need ~ Assist the grieving by handling all or any of the details from pre-transition to disposition, thus providing them with the peace of knowing that all the details are being handled impeccably, and that their wishes and goals are our priority.
- Save our clients money, if finances are an issue.
“Many institutions provide elements of what might be called a death-planning program to seniors. Yet none provide an independent planner to consult in advance, for a moderate fee, on the potentially costly details that most avoid confronting. Look for providers to emerge to serve a U.S. market that will only grow the closer 74-million baby boomers get to their twilight years. It’s almost as certain as death and taxes.” There’s a Crying Need for Funeral Planners by Robert Powell, CBS Marketwatch.com, 2/24/04
Transition Planning is filling this need!
Our CD Includes Everything You Need To Know To Practically Prepare For The Inevitable!
Transition Planning: Complete End-of-Life Education & Resources
Written & Compiled by Caryl Dennis & Parker Whitman
*Save Thousands of Dollars!
*Know Your Rights & Responsibilities
*Face Your Fear of Death
*Make Your Own Decisions – Spare Your Loved Ones
Our New CD Includes Everything You Need To Know
To Practically Prepare For The Inevitable!
A complete guide, 167 pages, 160+ original cartoon illustrations and hundreds of Internet resources. (Electronic version available for immediate download – .doc file – no special technology required)
1. Takin’ Care of Business
Transition Kit, Transition Planning Questionnaire, Wills, Power of Attorney, Trusts, Pour-Over Will, Living Will, Health Care Power of Attorney, Advanced Health Care Directive, Medicaid, financial strategies, at-need vs. pre-need funeral purchasing.
Cremation vs. burial, Funeral Consumer Alliance, Federal Trade Commission Funeral Rules, embalming, organ/medical donation, autopsies, caskets, cemeteries, liners and vaults, caring for your own dead, green burial, funeral/celebration planning, visitation, viewing, memorials, obituaries, eulogies, living funerals, the family meeting.
3. Exploring the Inevitable
Nearing-Death Awareness, Hospice, caregiving, Transition Guides, the physical process, grief, what to say and not say. Facing the fear of death, lessons from Near-Death Experiencers, life review, unfinished business, unresolved relationships, Legacy Information, After-Death Communication.
Step by step instructions when you are left to handle all the details of a death and want to do it as inexpensively as possible. (MS Word Document)
Transition Planning Questionnaire
25 pages of in-depth questions to help you get your estate information organized. Save time and money with your attorney, financial adviser or funeral director.
(Microsoft Word Document)
3-page life review organizer. Leave the gift of your life story. (Microsoft Word Document)
Last Will and Testament, Durable Power of Attorney, Living Will, Health Care Power of Attorney, Health Care Directive, Pour-Over Will, Quit Claim Deed, Pre-Need Cremation Authorization, Final Wishes Declaration. (Microsoft Word Documents)
Transition Planning 101 DVD
The Basics You Need To Practically
Prepare For The Inevitable!
45 minute Presentation by Caryl Dennis
or FREE with purchase of
Transition Planning CD
I can’t even begin to describe how helpful your Transition CD was to Tom and me in preparing for his death, and to me afterwards. I don’t believe I could have managed without it. Thank you so much for that! LH
“Your CD is FABULOUS! I only wish I had it two years ago when my Mother passed away. I now will be prepared to help my Father. Thank you so much for all your work.” TR
“I just didn’t realize how much I didn’t know. I will now be prepared so that my daughter won’t have to make my decisions for me”. FN
“When my Mother died, she hadn’t made any preparations. It was a nightmare. Some of our family members still aren’t talking to each other and it’s been three years. If only she had made her own decisions.” RB
“We looked for my Aunt’s will for three months. What a mess! We are still in the probate courts and it’s been 2 1/2 years since her death. People just don’t realize what a mess it makes for their loved ones, if they haven’t done all the necessary documents. Thanks for getting the word out!” CM
“This information is so important. I can’t believe there isn’t somewhere in our society that this education is mandatory.” MT
“I took your suggestion and ordered a casket for my Mother on-line and saved thousands of dollars. Thanks for the tip.” AD
About the Authors
The Transition Planning project was inspired by the deaths of my brother, Ted (from AIDS, in August of 1996, five days after his 35th birthday), and my father, “Denny” (from cancer, in August of 2002, at the age of 81). Both transitions, which I had the privilege of witnessing, were profoundly impressive experiences, invoking in me a desire to learn more about dying – especially how I could have better helped Dad and Ted through the dying process. Also the process of helping my mother reorganize her life – including paperwork, financial affairs and living arrangements – helped me to understand just how much I did not know about estate planning and other end-of-life issues.
My early experiences with the paranormal gave me an open mind about such subjects as “life after death”; I’ve pursued them along a number of different paths throughout my life. Particularly fascinating to me is the so-called “near-death experience”. Over the years I’ve become acquainted with such notables in the field as Raymond Moody, Dannion Brinkley, Mellen-Thomas Benedict, and P.M.H. Atwater, as well as many other experiencers and researchers. Having met these near-death survivors personally and after hearing their stories, as well as many others, any fear of death I may have had has been, at the very least lessened. However, as Parker told me recently, “you don’t know until you face it personally”.
Ted was my first experience of the death of someone close to me, though, and I was totally unprepared for it. Ted was born when I was eleven; fourteen months earlier my mother had borne twins (Ted was actually conceived as a twin, as was I, but neither his twin nor mine survived till birth. This is known as the Vanishing Twin Phenomenon – more information is available on our other web site). Being the oldest girl still living at home, I became something of a second mother to all the babies; Ted and I were very close. He had terrifying ghostly/paranormal experiences from infancy, and often sought protection from them by scampering into my room late at night and climbing into bed with me. He was a tormented soul – a tale told in our book The Millennium Children: Tales of the Shift.
Dad’s transition process was long, stressful, and exhausting for everyone concerned. Despite attending Ted’s transition five years previously, I still hadn’t done any real research into death and dying; I had very little experience with the ways of the allopathic medical industry and was really unprepared for what was demanded of me. I was Dad’s primary caregiver for nine months. Afflicted with throat cancer in the mid-70’s, he’d undergone a total laryngectomy, thereafter remaining cancer-free until he was diagnosed in November of 2001 with squamous cell carcinoma in his nose, which spread to his face and eventually to his eye and brain. Three weeks after a 7-hour surgery, he suffered an abdominal aortic aneurysm, which led to another 8 hours of emergency surgery. (My friend Carolene Heart, a well-known psychic, “saw” the aneurysm three weeks before I was able to get a diagnosis out of one of Dad’s doctors – hence the “emergency” surgery). Amazingly, he survived all that, and even appeared to be recovering well; however, a follow-up examination revealed that the cancer had spread, leaving a couple of very unpleasant treatment options, both of which Dad decided were unacceptable. “I’ve had a full life,” he said. “I’m done.” He wanted to die at home, but we were unable to control his extreme pain, so it was finally agreed that he would enter the Bay Pines V. A. Medical Center Hospice Unit, with the hope that, after we got the pain under control, he could return home. That never happened. The next eleven days, I can honestly say, changed my life.
I’ve learned a lot about death and dying since my experience with Dad, and am constantly seeking to learn more. What follows is the result of my research to date (Summer of 2004), offered in e-book form so that I can continue to update it as I gain in knowledge. Rather than “reinvent the wheel”, I provide links to many of the sources of information that I found (please excuse any unbroken links as they are unavoidable), offering only a paragraph or two on each subject, including personal experience and my insights. I don’t necessarily agree with all the information on the links; they’re provided to enable the reader to do whatever research and reach whatever conclusions he or she desires. Parker has added his cartoons to the mix to help “lighten up” the subject, since some folks find the subject of death “morbid”.
We can’t really know what happens when we die until we die, but until then, we can consider what the “near-death” experiencers report. You’ll find herein, therefore, many references to NDEr’s reports, insights and experiences.
I believe that exploring the NDE, Nearing-Death Awareness and After-Death Communication can help us face the fear of death and empower us to make the many necessary decisions surrounding the inevitable end of our time on earth.
In the course of doing Intuitive Life Readings over the last decade or so, I have on occasion contacted departed loved ones for clients, and even helped a few “go to the Light”. I hope to develop this ability to telepathically connect with the dying and those in spirit in order to better aid anyone in need – whether living or not! It’s my belief, based on what I’ve learned and what I’ve experienced via the “sixth sense”, that a necessary part of living well is to make any day “a good day to die”, to quote Chief Crazy Horse.
I am honored to say that Transition Planning was recognized by the State of Florida Department of Elder Affairs as a “Best Practice 2004″.
The best way to live, the sages say, is to be ready to die at any second (without, of course, seeking or desiring to die – “compassionate detachment”, I think the Buddhists call it)…We’re also told, by any number and all sorts of spiritual technology sales-people, that one who achieves such an exalted state – who becomes, without emotional attachment or aversion, “at one” with his or her death – also achieves a state known variously as “Imperturbability” or “Divine Nonchalance” or “Union of Mind and Heart” or Salvation or Enlightenment or Nirvana or True Freedom, and so forth, depending on the path one follows. Indeed, one cannot be truly “ready for the final surprise”, as Steve Miller put it so long ago, without attaining such a state, because only then can one transcend the fear with which the ego responds to the idea of its mortality. It is even asserted by some that the so-called “religious impulse” originated in the ability to foresee the inevitability of death. It follows, then, that if one is equipped with the necessary spiritual resources and has one’s “affairs” properly in order, there should be nothing frightening about the dying process, except perhaps for the pain that can accompany it…It is all, we hear, a matter of preparation and perception – and, I believe, imagination.
I imagine being dead, for example, as permanent weightlessness, a total absence of any sense of MASS. Just utter and complete relaxation, continuous uninterrupted exhalation, an endless sigh of relief…plus, no Ego to “experience” any of this, to judge it, to find fault or virtue! I imagine the complete absence of “Otherness” – of any sense of separation. Of course, some would argue that there is no “sense” of anything at all; the majority of the modern scientific community, as far as I know, is still of the opinion – due to an ostensible lack of good evidence to the contrary – that precisely nothing, in terms of consciousness, “happens” after the physical body expires. Other folks, and certainly all religions of which I’m aware, are pretty much convinced that some aspect of existence – the soul, the spirit, the astral and/or etheric bodies, even mere tendencies of behavior – somehow makes its way along the spiral of life and/or sentience to reappear elsewhere, or to at least exert some kind of influence. There is, in other words, that which abides, beyond that which merely recycles. I think that’s probably true, but I also feel that it’s only true if it’s vividly imagined – that is, believed…Which leads naturally to the question, “Is there an Ultimate, All-Encompassing, Unimaginable Imagination, from which all mortal imagining proceeds?” Stephen Hawking says the Universe doesn’t require it, but do we? And if so, why? What ancient genetic or tribal or cosmic programs are running here?
Over the ages, millions of words have been written and spoken in answer to these and all the other questions related to the process of dying, the shift we call “Death”. Herewith, we offer you some of those words – some perhaps familiar to you, some not…They are words of advice, comfort, inspiration – words that have helped Caryl and me through some difficult times, as perhaps they have helped you. It is my wish that these words will enable in your life – as they have enabled in mine – experiences that are easily beyond words.