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Interview with MJ Grant! (Part 2) MJ Talks About Caring for Her Dad at the End of His LIfe (Ep #027)

 

In this second interview with MJ Grant, MJ shares the most intimate details of an end of life conversation she had with her dad, Manley "Mannie" Grant.

 

In this interview, MJ also shares about how it was discovered that her dad was deaf and the information that his family received from professionals about how to communicate with him (unfortunately the guidance Manley's family received was not affirming of him).

 

MJ also describes her dad's painful illness journey and her role as a caregiver. She opens up about her grief process, shares how she knows that she is burning out as a caregiver, AND her favorite self-care strategies.
 

My hope is that by watching this video, you will have the courage to lean in to difficult end of life conversations when you are faced with them.

 

Grab a box of Kleenex! This conversation will leave you moved and inspired!

 

Read transcript here!

 

About MJ Grant

MJ is a remarkable woman! She is a CODA, that's a "Child of Deaf Adults". MJ was born to deaf parents and has been a member of the Maine deaf community since childhood. She currently provides sign language interpreting services to deaf communities in New England. She's married, caring for aging parents, and parenting four children ages 5, 15, 18, and 25. And today I get to share her caregiving journey with you!

 

 

Here’s a sneak peek at what you’ll learn from my interview with MJ:

  • [03:03] MJ talks about how it was discovered that her dad was deaf
  • [05:08] MJ describes the mistakes professionals made in guiding Manley Grant's family about how to communicate with him. 
  • [06:48] MJ is often in a position of educating professionals about the most affirming ways to communicate. Here, MJ describes educating hospice about her father's need to sign, rather than write.
  • [08:23] This interview takes place at the residential school that MJ's father was educated in and on the island where his memorial service was held. MJ talks about the significance of this.
  • [09:59] MJ opens up about her father's painful illness journey with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP)
  • [11:35] Talking with the hospice nurse, MJ discovers that her dad is in pain and afraid to die.
  • [11:55] MJ opens up about a poignant end of life conversation she had with her dad. 
  • [17:39] End of life conversations are incredibly important in creating a healthy transition to death, MJ shares about what her dad needed to know in his final days.
  • [18:59] From the time her dad took his last breath to days and months later, MJ shares about her grief process.
  • [23:42] MJ lets us in on how she knows when she is getting burned out!
  • [25:35] Taking care of yourself when caring for loved ones is essential. MJ shares her "go to" self-care strategies!

 

 

You may remember that MJ is also caring for her mother and mother-in-law who have dementia. Because of this, I wanted to share with you an important freebie I made just for you, It's called,  Dementia 101: A Beginner's Guide to Dementia Disorders. In it, I describe what dementia is and isn't. I describe the phases of dementia and what to do if you're worried that your aging parent may have dementia. So, take a moment to download it. It answers some of the most frequently asked questions I get about dementia!

 

 

Finally, please share this video with your friends who are caring for their aging parents because nobody should have to do this caregiving thing-alone.

Lots of love to you and your family.

Bye for now,

Dr. Regina Koepp

PS: Here's where you can follow MJ! (And, I hope you do! She'll continue to inspire you!)

 

Related Episodes:

Interview with MJ Grant (Part 1). MJ Talks About Caring for Her Mom With Dementia (Ep #026)

 


In loving memory of Manley "Mannie" Grant (9/16/1942 - 6/6/2019). "Hearing people called him Mannie. His name sign was an ‘M’ on the chest. In Deaf culture, one is assigned a specific sign name that is unique to them. It’s a special thing." - MJ Grant

 


 

I'm Dr. Regina Koepp!

I'm a Stanford trained, Board Certified Clinical Psychologist specializing with older adults and families! I'm an Assistant Professor at Emory University School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, and a staff Psychologist working with older adults and families at the Atlanta VA Health Care System. I'm a mom of two little kids and a daughter to aging parents.

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