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A death doula wishes to proactively plan for her own death, in the hopes of inspiring others to do the same.

Deanna Cochran

Death Doula / Nurse / Author

Transformation and Story Notes

Deanna Cochran is a death doula and nurse, who specializes in training other death doulas. Presently, Deanna is also a part-time caregiver to both her elderly and dying father and her ex-partner, who is stricken with cancer. She lives between their two homes while she cares for them both.

In Late August, Deanna is moving into a new home with her eldest daughter, which would give her occasion to go through the storage unit housing her belongings since she moved out of her own home in 2022. As she moves in with her daughter she will have to downsize for the move, which will require thorough scrutiny of what's in storage.

As a death doula Deanna has helped many transition to the next plane, and has even authored a book about it to dispense her wisdom to other doulas. She has seen firsthand the chaos and uncertainty that can occur at the time of death, and she does not wish that for herself or her family. So, she has decided to proactively plan her own death: her funeral, and her end of life wishes. She would like for her family and friends to be part of the process.

Deanna already has a rough plan: she would like to sit down with those closest to her and tell them all at once what her wishes are for her end of life. She wants to go to Eloise Natural Burial Ground - and choose her grave site. She wants to choose the fabric she is wrapped in. She wants her daughter to make a stone flower with her mother’s ashes that can be laid in her grave with her. She wants to review her end of life care in different situations and explain to her family and friends what her wishes are. And naturally, she would like to curate her belongings.

Between the dual motivation of downsizing for a move, and planning for her own death, Deanna could benefit from a visit from the Swedes.


Deanna’s loved ones are supportive of her but are not comfortable with planning her death. Just mentioning it on Zoom Laura’s daughter burst into tears, saying “I don’t want you to die!”

Planning one's death is not easy because it brings up all the scars and wounds, per Deanna--it explodes everything you’ve been coping with.

Deanna herself cried when thinking about her friends, and the musicians she plays with regularly in Austin. No one wants to plan their end of life care and this is why. It's so damn hard.

Deanna says she doesn’t have alot of stuff, but her daughter 100% disagrees. She has too much stuff  for this next stage of her life.

Stuff/Random Objects
  • DOLLS - a ‘million’ dolls her mother gave her

  • The girls' baby clothes

  • Artwork - she has a collection of art work she has purchased throughout her life

Who is getting their stuff?
  • Daughters

  • Friends

  • Ex-Husband

  • Ex-Partner - Mary

  • Donations

  • Art Sale

Their Thoughts on Death

Deanna says that end of life workers are notoriously known for not planning their own end of life care.  She believes it's important that she do so and wants to do it publicly.

“Death is not scary in our house; it's just sad."


Austin, TX

(Exact home she is moving to with her daughter is TBD)

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