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Collective & Personal Trauma: one family’s graceful end-of-life story

Bear Psychology Podcast

Release Date: 12/01/2023

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What does it mean to lose someone so close to you that your world will never be the same? What if this happens when the whole world is locked down during a global Pandemic, a collective trauma?  How do we navigate terrible loss with great compassion and love?  Journalist Mitchell Consky has something important to share with us about this based on personal experience. During the worst of the COVID pandemic, Consky received distressing news.  His father had been given less than two months to live after being diagnosed with a rare terminal cancer. In his book, “Home Safe: A...

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What does it mean to lose someone so close to you that your world will never be the same? What if this happens when the whole world is locked down during a global Pandemic, a collective trauma?  How do we navigate terrible loss with great compassion and love?  Journalist Mitchell Consky has something important to share with us about this based on personal experience.

During the worst of the COVID pandemic, Consky received distressing news.  His father had been given less than two months to live after being diagnosed with a rare terminal cancer. In his book, “Home Safe: A Memoir of End-of-Life Care During Covid-19”, he describes the challenges he and his family faced with balancing a family-centered approach to end-of-life care with the social distancing demands of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Listen our conversation with journalist & author Mitchell Consky as we talk about his family’s journey supporting his beloved father die with dignity during a pandemic lockdown. Consky walks us through the experience of home hospice during a lockdown filled with dance parties; episodes of Tiger King, and his father's deadpan humour.

Mitchell Consky is an Toronto based author and journalist with works published in the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, the Walrus, BNN Bloomberg and CTV News. Consky specializes in long-form feature writing and essays about loss, travel, and adventure. He also holds a Masters degree in Journalism from Toronto Metropolitan University, and a bachelor’s degree in English and Film from Wilfrid Laurier University.

Mitchell Consky’s book utilized his journalistic talents to interview his father daily, documenting the last conversations, heartfelt farewells, and the spontaneous hilarity that marked his father's final days. These interviews provided a platform for fatherly affection, a chance for emotional disclosure during the slowed down of a locked down world, and an illustration of how far a family would go to ensure a dying loved one felt comfortable at home.

Listen to our conversation with Mitchell Consky as we discuss his experience with end of life care during a global pandemic and saying goodbye to someone you love.

If you are interested in Consky’s story and the heartbreaking reality of terminal illness, this podcast is for you.

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