Michael Douglas - 20191010

Michael Douglas! Michael is a 53yo primitive skills teacher, community mentor, and educator. I met him at his Maine Primitive Skills School and have been following his work ever since. We do not discuss the decade-old charge against him: please listen to the intro for further details. During this conversation, we discuss the importance of shared story, how community reverses entropy, and why the sacred question should guide us all.

I hope you enjoy! :)

Michael is…
beyond his genetics, the environment he immerses himself in and what he focuses on that environment,
a member of a vibrant community,
a father of a brilliant family,
having fun making it up as he goes,
and trying to find the threads of ancestral wisdom.

Before Michael dies, he wants…
to honor the mentors in his life,
a medicine worker on every street corner,
at least one of his butternut trees to produce butternuts,
and people to realize that you’re not going to be young forever and how you treat your elders is going to come back and haunt you.

When Michael dies, he wants…
a peaceful transition surrounded by his loved ones,
a beautiful sunset,
to end it when he started it,
three years before he goes,
a glass of red wine,
to make a collection of music,
and all his ducks in a row.

After Michael dies, he wants…
to surrender this energy that’s been moving this body around toward where it can make the greatest good, and to see the pendulum not swing so harshly from left to right all the time.

In conclusion, Michael says…
”In spite of all the crazy, love.”

Rashad Davis - 20180329

Rashad Malik Davis! Rashad is a 26yo creative, lover of stories, and story-teller. I met Rashad during my undergraduate years at Tufts University, and I’ve quietly kept tabs on him ever since. He recently published his first illustrated children’s book, Carefree Like Me!, one that I highly recommend reading as he promotes empathy, compassion, and diversity through a heartfelt story. In this conversation, we discuss the painful genesis and healing journey of his book, his deeply rooted spirituality, and the importance of representation in the stories that we tell.

I hope you enjoy! :)

Rashad is…
a creative,
a story-teller,
and someone who loves big.

Before Rashad dies, he wants…
his own TV show,
his own cartoon,
and his own studio.

When Rashad dies, he wants…
to have left behind something that made the world better,
and to be surrounded by love.

After Rashad dies, he wants…
the people that rely on him to be set up,
and his people to know that he’s okay.

In conclusion, Rashad says…
“I’m going to speak to the people who are at the precipice of change but are afraid to take that next step off. For all of you, who are on the edge of their dreams and are very afraid to take that leap, that next step past their comfort: I will let you know that where you are comfortable, the ground is not fertile.

What I mean by that is when we get stuck in a sense of comfort, there’s no growth. Growth comes out of us being willing to step past our comfort zone and being willing to step past what makes us complacent

I want to challenge you to take that leap past the infertile ground and to take that step into the unknown because the unknown is where you’re forced to make change and forced to adapt and forced to excel in whatever you’re doing because you don’t know what you’re doing and the process of not knowing is so important because we can’t know everything and those times when you don’t know, that’s when you grow the most. And that’s where you find the richest rewards because you’re now relying on faith.

Faith allows you to move into such beautiful opportunities that you will not have imagined in your comfort zone.

So take that next step over the grass.”

Camille Culbreath - 20180912

Camille Culbreath! Camille is a 27yo unexpected mama and comedian. Camille jumped on my radar this past Mother’s Day with a post about her son, Arthur, and the story of his birth via cryptic pregnancy.

During this conversation, we discuss how she thought she was dying when she was actually very pregnant, how her brother’s unexpected death separated her family, and how this unanticipated bundle of joy reunified her family.

I hope you enjoy! :)

Camille is…
and someone’s unexpected mama.

Before Camille dies, she wants…
to feel like she’s conquered this motherhood thing,
to be a success to herself,
and to continue to know she has happiness.

When Camille dies, she wants…
everyone around her to celebrate.

After Camille dies, she wants…
to be a legend that Arthur and her future children tell their kids,
and her family name to continue to be strong.

In conclusion, Camille says…
“Parenthood is not a piece of cake.”

Tasia Percevecz - 20180830

Tasia Percevecz! Tasia is a 28yo athlete, coach, and believer. Tasia recently competed in the 2018 CrossFit Games and placed first with the CrossFit Mayhem Freedom team. In this conversation, we discuss the High, Low, Buffalo of the CrossFit Games, how an abusive relationship now allows her to connect with fellow humans, and her single mother’s strength as she mourned the death of her siblings.

I hope you enjoy! :)

Tasia is…
a believer,
an athlete,
and someone who believes that her destiny is to spread love throughout the world.

Before Tasia dies, she wants…
to continue to be happy,
to live out her purpose,
to travel,
and to start a family.

When Tasia dies, she wants…
to be at peace,
and to not be in fear.

After Tasia dies, she wants…
to be remembered for good things,
and to be remembered for spreading love and joy.

In conclusion, Tasia says…
“Just remember you're capable of anything you want to do in life and happiness can be just right around the corner cause it's found within you.

So remember whether you are in a hard time or a high time, that joy can be found in each day and it's really important to prioritize that over money and fame and all those things because love conquers all.

Joy, love, spread those things in the world as much as you can. And hopefully goodness will come from it.”

Scott H Once Again - 20190815

Scott H! Scott is a 30yo follower of Christ, family medicine resident, and realist. In the two years since our first conversation, he has experienced a truly wild ride to earn the title of physician.

During this interview, we discuss the lows associated with failing two board exams, how identifying with his faith kept him above water, and why he never considered himself a suicide risk when he wasn’t sure he would graduate medical school.

Scott is…
not a medical student anymore,
a follower of Christ,
and a realist.

Before Scott dies, he wants…
to be used wherever God puts him.

When Scott dies, he wants…
to stay out of the hospital.

After Scott dies, he wants…
the things he did in this life to have an impact on somebody.

In conclusion, Scott says…
”Love God and love others.
The two greatest Commandments that are in The Bible.
If you forget about either of those things, then we’re lost.”

Pamela Wible On Death - 20190801

Pamela Wible! Pamela is a 51yo family medicine physician, emotional bungee jumper, and expert on physician suicide. I met Pamela as a keynote speaker on the topic of why doctors are killing themselves. We caught up and decided to record an interview for the podcast!

During this conversation, we discuss her fondest childhood memories in a morgue with her father, how a pediatrician’s funeral service woke her up to the epidemic of physician suicide, and why she released her book on Juneteenth with endless optimism for a day that can change everything.

I hope you enjoy!

Pamela is…
an expert on physician suicide,
a free spirit,
along for the ride,
absolutely fascinated by human psychology and culture change,
and free flowing.

Before Pamela dies, she wants…
to experience all the fun stuff of life,
to eradicate human rights violations in medical training,
to stop the suicides in medical training,
the male-female to be more complementary,
everyone to be vegan,
and to help physicians release their full healing potential on the world.

When Pamela dies, she wants…
to reunite with all these doctors on her board,
and to not be in physical pain.

After Pamela dies, she wants…
to hangout with Greg Miday,
to hangout with her dogs,
and to play jokes on people.

In conclusion, Pamela says…
”Try not to make fear based decisions. Be in the flow of your power and your truth. You have everything you need inside of you and all the wisdom already exists in you.

The seed of you is there and you really don’t need much, except water food and friends and random people to show up and help it grow.”

Nate Baker On Death - 20190718

Nate Baker! Nate is a 33yo emergency medicine resident physician, father of three, and purple heart recipient for wounds received in combat. I have known Nate since the very first days of medical school: he is a passionate and logical fellow who loves to challenge the status quo.

During this conversation, we discuss the value of song to change our mental state, his experience as a wounded infantryman, and what heaven means for a problem-solver.

I hope you enjoy!

Nate is…
a problem-solver.

Before Nate dies, he wants…
to help people understand what it means to be happy.

When Nate dies, he wants…
to be happy.

After Nate dies, he wants…
to have a purpose or nothing

In conclusion, Nate says…
“If I struck a chord or you’re more interested, the book that I’m writing, I’m going to make it free. Available as an ebook. And it’s going to be called ‘How Christians Are Failing Christ’. So keep that in mind.”

Dayana Pereira On Death - 20190704

Dayana Pereira! Dayana is a 43yo Feldenkrais practitioner, co-parent, and transplant from Uruguay. I met Dayana, without actually introducing myself, while we alternated between the sauna and ice bath at her healing and wellness center, Koru Real Wellness.

During this conversation, we discuss the tension between her strict religious school upbringing and the Uruguayan wilderness, the difference between reverence and spirituality, and how working as a living statue in Australia taught her the importance of breath.

I hope you enjoy!

Dayana is…
here and now,
and waking up.

Before Dayana dies, she wants…
to live life with awareness and love,
to move, breathe, and act in the world at large and in her local community as an agent of change awareness and joy,
and to have fun doing what she does best and to keep learning how to be of service to the expansion of better humans everywhere.

When Dayana dies, she wants…
to breathe and surrender,
to smile,
and to embrace death as a continuation of her life knowing that she lived with awareness of death everyday.

After Dayana dies, she wants…
to be a speck of love in the heart of those that she touched with her presence,
and to be a spark of joy and awareness to whoever remembers her.

In conclusion, Dayana says…
“Smile. Breathe. Look up.”

Nicho Watts On Death - 20190620

Nicho Watts! Nicho is a 30yo father, Christian, and trader. I grew up with Nicho as a childhood friend and we have been loosely following each other since high school graduation.

During this conversation, we discuss his return to Christianity, the importance of stories and archetypes for a developing mind, and why he wants his death to feel like taking off a watch.

I hope you enjoy!

Nicho is…
a trader,
a Christian,
a father,
and a husband.

Before Nicho dies, he wants…
to see his grandkids be successful,
and to have great grandkids.

When Nicho dies, he wants…
to feel like there is nothing left to do,
to feel like things are good to continue,
to feel like he is taking off his watch,
and one last laugh.

After Nicho dies, he wants…
life to go on.

In conclusion, Nicho says…
“Reach out to your neighbors, especially the ones you disagree with, and find a way to agree to disagree. But also, find a way to listen to each other and at least understand why it is that you disagree in the first place. That’s how we make a better world.”

Suzie Marschhausen On Death - 20190606

Suzie Marschhausen! Suzie is a 28yo mother, writer, and coach. I attended high school with Suzie and have been watching her personal and spiritual journey from afar. During this conversation, we discuss her recent Ayahuasca ceremony, the difficulty of releasing attachment as a new parent, and how the pain of abandonment takes on a new meaning for her.

I hope you enjoy!

Suzie is…
a creator,
and everything.

Before Suzie dies, she wants…
tto know and live the truth of who she is,
and to have faith in her soul’s purpose to truly follow that path.

When Suzie dies, she wants…
to be fearless,
and to release loved ones from attachment.

After Suzie dies, she wants…
to do it all over again.

In conclusion, Suzie says…
“You are unconditionally loved. You are supported in every way possible that you could ever possibly imagine. You have everything you need right inside of you. I would pray that you are able to open yourself up to this. To experience life as the heaven that it is meant to be. Because we are all everything. We are all one.”

Adam Arazi On Death - 20190523

Adam Arazi! Adam is a 30yo traveler, dog-father, and son. I have known Adam for almost a decade and we have both changed dramatically over this time. Shockingly, his father died unexpectedly 10 days after recording this interview. During this conversation, we discuss his existential confusion, why he may expatriate to the Philippines, and why he intentionally does not think about sudden death.

I hope you enjoy!

Adam is…
a husband,
a son,
a father to a dog,
very vulnerable,
and a risk-taker.

Before Adam dies, he wants…
to explore passions deeply,
to see as much of the world as possible,
and to accumulate at least one, if not more, properties that are attractive enough for his friends and family to want to come visit him.

When Adam dies, he wants…
to be very physically comfortable,
to not die in pain,
his family around him,
to not be in a hospital,
and to have a better understanding of death than he does now.

After Adam dies, he wants…
all his offspring to be happy, well-fed, rich, and loving life,
to donate everything he possibly could to science,
his body to be reincarnated into another living thing,
people to be more in tune with nature,
and to be remembered for as long as possible.

In conclusion, Adam says…
I encourage anyone listening to have conversations like this. I think it is important to stop talking about work, stop talking about sports, stop talking about celebrities, and talk about yourself, your goals, and your desires.”

Chloe Costigan On Death - 20190509

Chloe Costigan! Chloe is a 31yo physical therapist, teacher, and half-orphan. I met Chloe while interviewing her husband, John Giacalone, and quickly realized she’d be a wonderful guest. During this conversation, we discuss what makes a good clinician, why she considered herself a flight risk, and how she has been shaped by the death of her father at an early age.

I hope you enjoy!

Chloe is…
a living being.

Before Chloe dies, she wants…
more clarity,
and to help people.

When Chloe dies, she wants…
there to be stillness and peace that permeates around her.

After Chloe dies, she wants…
people to continue to benefit from the time she spent on this earth.

In conclusion, Chloe says…
I’ve always identified so strongly with myself as an individual, but I’m beginning to realize more and more that we as individuals make up a community and a variety of communities. I think that one of the best ways to thrive as an individual is by relating to your community and I think that we go about doing that with empathy and vulnerability. I would strongly encourage people to embrace their lives in that way.

It’s like, it’s okay we’re all struggling and struggling becomes a really loose definition for living life as we know it. Honing that sense of community can really give you such a strong foundation for living a life as fulfilling as you want it to be. And, of course, that community can be as broad or as narrow as you want it to be.

But I really think it comes down to vulnerability and empathy. And I really strongly encourage people to embrace those two aspects.

Eugene Kim Once Again - 20190425

Eugene Kim Once Again! Eugene is a 29yo student, recorder, and gamer. In the nearly three years since his original interview, Eugene has been physically much closer to life and death. During this conversation, we talk about everything from: being indoor humans and how one day we might be more apelike to the game of Go/Baduk. The importance of connectedness and community shine throughout our conversation with an optimistic look forwards toward his future as a psychiatrist, father, and human.

I hope you enjoy!

Eugene is…
a student,
a recorder,
and a gamer.

Before Eugene dies, he…
still wants to be a grandfather,
to see all his children reach sexual maturity - ideally longer,
to feel like he has done enough weird shit with his MD to feel like it was worth it,
and a period of a year with Mackenzi, going back to a couple.

When Eugene dies, he wants…
to be enjoying it,
to have fun dying,
and to have expressed love recently to many people.

After Eugene dies, he wants…
to move through the temporal dimension freely,
humans to no longer be the dominant life form on this planet,
humans to get off the ground,
and Mackenzi to have a whole lot of fun.

In conclusion, Eugene says…
“Practice something. Practice all the time. You don’t need to practice the same thing all the time. Just keep practicing and pursuing mastery and getting better, as a gamer would be getting better: trying to speed run through a level of a difficult video game.

Just have fun practicing.

Don’t allow yourself to be lulled into complacency by a plateau. Understand that a plateau is just your lack of perspective.

Just keep practicing. Keep trying to get better at stuff. Because once you stop trying to get better, things are over. You’re dead.

So just keep trying to get better!”

Mackenzi Kim Once Again - 20190411

Mackenzi Kim Returns! Mackenzi is a 27yo mother, 4th year medical student, and future family medicine physician. In the intervening three years since her initial interview (the first ever On Death episode!), she dove headfirst into a relationship, married her partner, and birthed a wonderful son.

During this emotionally vulnerable conversation, we discuss her lessons from the deaths of family members, what she has learned from a few months of motherhood, and how she imagines a wonderful reunion with loved ones after death.

I hope you enjoy!

Mackenzi is…
a student,
and becoming.

Before Mackenzi dies, she wants…
to effect positive change,
to see her children grow up and leave the house,
to physically see more parts of the world,
to continue learning and growing,
and to foster greater connections and deeper relationships.

When Mackenzi dies, she wants…
a moment to accept what's happening.

After Mackenzi dies, she wants…
those she loves to have a level of comfort in their lives,
humanity to get their shit together,
and to join that collective.

In conclusion, Mackenzi says…
"Life is an incredible opportunity. Just enjoy it. Enjoy that opportunity. Take it and don't squander it. Love as much as you can. Learn as much as you can. Do as much as you can."

2019 Season Prospective - 20190328

This week, I tease a bit of the upcoming 2019 Season of the On Death Podcast! During this solo-cast, I review some of the changes in my life this past winter. Then, I provide some sneak previews into the 2019 Season ahead. Happy Spring! I hope that your year is off to a strong period of growth.

I hope you enjoy!

Jim Goodreau On Death [REPOST] - 20180816

Jim Goodreau! Jim is a 71yo retired vascular surgeon, Air Force brat, and grieving father. I met Jim as a coach for my medical school program, SELECT, and I’ve been itching to sit down with him to dig through his rich and profound life experiences. During this conversation, we discuss his time as a Naval surgeon covering a huge swath of patients, his two strokes, and the immense losses of two of his sons.

I hope you enjoy!

Jim is…
an Air Force brat,
a Roman Catholic,
a physician,
a husband,
a father,
a grandfather,
and a coach.

Before Jim dies, he wants…
to see his seniors and juniors graduate and be a part of their lives,
to enjoy his grandchildren,
to somehow solve the problem of his disabled brother and disabled sister in Chicago,
to take on another class,
to the see world come to a sense of peace,
to lose some weight,
to get back to playing golf,
and to walk in the Out Of The Darkness walk.

When Jim dies, he wants…
to not be a burden to anybody in the closing moments of his life,
to go out quietly, maybe not wake up tomorrow with his kindle by the bedside,
to be remembered as someone who tried to do the right thing,
to not die in the hospital,
and to write a letter to the medical students that will dissect him.

After Jim dies, he wants…
his children and their children to live in a world where they can prosper.

In conclusion, Jim says…
“There’s a quote and I’m gonna say it wrong, and it comes in three parts:
Whatever happened before, you can’t change it. You can learn from it, but don’t wallow in it. Get over it. It’s done.
Whatever we’re doing today, do the best you can do. Think it through. That’s the big thing. Just think it through and try to do the right thing. And of course we can argue about that.
And the other is: Don’t be afraid of tomorrow. It’s coming, but prepare yourself.”

Bansi Savla On Death [REPOST] - 20160525

Bansi Savla! Bansi is a medical student, a Jain, and an incredibly thoughtful 22-year-old. During this lovely conversation, we talk about time, death, her faith, all in a way that is relatable and digs at essential truths.

I hope you enjoy!

Bansi is…
a part of everything,
and a friend.

Before Bansi dies, she wants…
not to want.

When Bansi dies, she wants…
to be at peace with herself.

After Bansi dies, she wants…
to break the cycle of birth and death,
another adventure,
and ultimate truth.

In conclusion, Bansi says…
“Enjoy the ride. Do you. That’s what matters.”

Michael Caron On Death [REPOST] - 20180426

Michael Caron! Michael is a 40yo father, coach, and motivator. I met Michael while at a yoga teacher training and we have kept in touch ever since. I chose this time to interview him because of the recent birth of his son, Stadler, who was 1mo old at the time.

We dive deep into one of the hardest months of his life, with the death of a life-long friend as a result of brain cancer and the loss of his matriarch grandmother. He read the eulogy at both services and I’m sure the stories will leave an impression on you, like they did me.

Additionally during this energizing conversation, we discuss his formative years through a semester at sea, the wonder of being a new father while being present for a stepdaughter, and his philosophy on leadership and self-development.

I hope you enjoy!

Ayden is…
A writer,
An artist
An assistant director of a company that studies one person's experiences
A lover
A reader
In love

Before Ayden dies, she wants…
To write another book, at least,
More humans to encounter their own humanity,
To Continue to travel,
To show some of her artwork in galleries,
To have a home,
People to think differently

When Ayden dies, she wants…
To feel at peace,
It to be a moment of acceptance

After Ayden dies, she wants…
All her loved ones to be healthy and happy

In conclusion, Ayden says…
“I hope [your listeners] can be curious about the world around them.”

Ayden LeRoux On Death [REPOST] - 20180607

Ayden LeRoux! Ayden is a 29yo artist, writer, and BRCA1+ human. I’ve known Ayden since my grade school days where we won a swing dancing competition together and we haven’t spoken for almost half a decade, this interview served a chance to catch up and see where life has taken us. During this conversation, we discuss the intertwining of science and magic to predict her future health, Land Art installations as spirituality, and how a partner changes our plans for death.

I hope you enjoy!

Ayden is…
A writer,
An artist
An assistant director of a company that studies one person's experiences
A lover
A reader
In love

Before Ayden dies, she wants…
To write another book, at least,
More humans to encounter their own humanity,
To Continue to travel,
To show some of her artwork in galleries,
To have a home,
People to think differently

When Ayden dies, she wants…
To feel at peace,
It to be a moment of acceptance

After Ayden dies, she wants…
All her loved ones to be healthy and happy

In conclusion, Ayden says…
“I hope [your listeners] can be curious about the world around them.”

Kristen Prosen On Death [REPOST] - 20170316

Kristen Prosen! Kristen is a 26yo herbalist, yoga teacher, and scared white woman. I've had the pleasure of learning Thai yoga massage from her and she teaches with grace and understanding. In this conversation, we discuss the universal relationship of plants, activism through addressing cultural bias, and the death of her grandmother.I hope you enjoy!

Kristen is…
embodied heart presence,
an herbalist,
a yogi,
a white woman,
a witch,
an activist,
and a servant.

Before Kristen dies, she wants…
to be a mother,
to have a house,
and to write a book.

When Kristen dies, she wants…
to be graceful.

After Kristen dies, she wants…
to not worry about it,
and to be cremated.

In conclusion, Kristen says…
"You are whole already.

I know it's not enough for me to say that you're whole to feel that you're whole. There's a lot of life experiences that you're gonna have to go through and a lot of grasping and running from pain and a lot of cultivating that will lead you to that realization so that it sits in your body and in your heart and in your mind, but you are.

You are already whole. You are already home.

And drink some plants."