Siriharma greenSilver City -- The next meeting of the monthly "Life Cafe" takes place Thursday, May 23, at 4:00 pm at the Silver City Public Library, when former Hospice worker and end-of-life caregiver Siridharma Khalsa will discuss end-of-life options available in New Mexico. The monthly, 90-minute life cafe is free, and facilitated by Lisa Jimenez, certified death doula and practitioner of Shamanic healing arts.

"It's so important that everyone become educated about what their end-of-life options are here in New Mexico, get clear about their personal wishes and share those with their loved ones and their primary care provider," said Jimenez. "This is a great opportunity to learn about those options and understand how to be better prepared for death."

End-of-life options currently available in New Mexico are medical aid in dying or MAID, which is available to mentally capable people with a terminal illness; voluntary stopping eating and drinking; palliative care, including sedation; deciding to forego or terminate medical treatments; continuing medical treatments regardless of prognosis; and Hospice care.

Siridharma Khalsa has lived in Grant County for nearly 30 years, and is a former Hospice worker and a volunteer with End of Life Options New Mexico, a non-profit organization which provides information and support for all end-of-life options, including medical aid in dying.

 "One of the greatest experiences of my life was learning to simply be present for people who are dying," she said. "I've also learned how important it is to educate oneself, create a plan for end of life and share it with our family, loved ones and our medical providers. It's a real privilege to help educate the community about such an important issue, and we're so fortunate in New Mexico to have medical aid in dying as an option."

The life cafe offers a safe place for people to come together to learn about and discuss the many aspects of death - especially our natural fears and concerns, added  Jimenez.

"When we consider what our own "good death" looks like and plan for it, we're much better able to let go of this life in a way that is peaceful, sacred, and is a blessing for ourselves and our loved ones," she said.  "The life cafe is open to everyone and embraces all ideas, cultural beliefs, practices and perspectives, and there is no intention to lead people to specific actions, conclusions, products or services."

The Silver City Public Library is located at 515 W. College Avenue. For more information, please contact Lisa Jimenez,  or (575) 574-5473. For more information about end-of-life options in New Mexico, please visit .

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