Loving, Dying, and Letting Go

What does it mean to love?
What does it mean to die?
And how can we let go? 


These three questions form the basis of the 5-hour Loving, Dying, and Letting Go course originally designed by Institute founder Amy Wright Glenn and now taught by Loving, Dying, and Letting Go certified Institute Teachers.

In this workshop, participants are asked to engage in deep personal reflection on three key themes/ areas of inquiry. These themes are: What does it means to love? What does it mean to die, and What does it mean to let go? Participants are encouraged to work with the energy of fear, transform the energies of hurt, and move forward in loving, dying, and letting go with great courage.

All participants are required to read Holding Space  so they can more deeply apply the questions outlined above to their own life journeys. To receive a certificate of completion, participants must successfully complete the 5-hour workshop.

Three Key Themes

What does it mean to love? How is attachment formed? What are the various types of love known in human experience? How do you love? Who do you love?

What does it mean to die? How do various world traditions approach the topic of dying? When have you known death? What are your hopes and fears?

What does it mean to let go? What does it mean to hold space for loss? How do you work with the energies of fear? How can we embody healthy attachment and reconciliation to loss? What do we hold on to as we let go? 

Loving, Dying, and Letting Go
5-hour Online Workshop
$90 USD
*Scholarships available

This 5-hour workshop is based upon Amy Wright Glenn’s book Holding Space: On Loving, Dying, and Letting Go ~ published by Parallax Press. The workshop is taught both in-person and online. Please note participants register individually with the teacher that is teaching their chosen workshop based upon the calendar below.

*Currently, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the course is taught online only by Institute teachers in accordance to the calendar listed below.

August 2021

August 30 & September 1 ~ Join Institute teacher Lori Adams, for a 5-hour, online Loving, Dying, and Letting Go workshop. The five-hour course will be offered in two sessions beginning at 7pm CST.
To register, contact Lori: loriadams12@earthlink.net

September 2021

September 21 & 28 ~ Join Institute teacher Danielle Pacific, for a 5-hour, online Loving, Dying, and Letting Go workshop.
The five-hour course will be offered in two sessions beginning at 4pm Hawaii Standard Time (7pm PST, 10pm EST)
To register, contact Danielle: danielle.pacific@gmail.com

November 2021

November 29 & December 6  ~ Join Institute teacher Jessica Kilbourn, for a 5-hour, online Loving, Dying, and Letting Go workshop. The five-hour course will be offered in two sections from 6:30 to 9:00pm EST.
Watch Jessica describe her work in teaching this course here.
To register, contact Jessica: jkilbourn@emich.edu


Loving, Dying, and Letting Go Teachers


Kristen Avonti holds a B.A. from Hampshire College wherein she studied psychology and social work. She has a background in herbalism, doula work, supporting birthing families, and end of life doula care. She has a deep passion for the natural world and loves growing plants for food and medicine. Kristen is a “midwife for the soul” who has dedicated her life to tending our most vulnerable and tender thresholds of growth, transformation, grief, and loss. As a Holding Space Consultant and Transformational Life Coach, Kristen supports individuals in navigating the wilderness of our personal journeys, stepping through our thresholds of transformation, and finding our meaning making through the telling of our stories. In addition to offering Holding Space Consultations, Kristen is also a teacher of the Loving, Dying, and Letting Go workshop. Kristen’s passion lies in working with folks who are navigating the impacts of trauma in their lives, and those who are in the transformative process of discovering their authenticity and truth. Kristen’s approach to care is founded on a belief in the sacredness and power of our stories and the ways in which they give us meaning and a sense of place within our lives. Kristen’s deeply attuned presence and calm, caring authenticity invite a courageous bravery to rumble with our stories, get to know our hungry ghosts, and venture into the meaning making that occurs when we are lovingly held in our most vulnerable truths and stories.

Trish Rux is Registered Nurse and holds a BA degree in Organizational Management and Communications from Concordia University. She is certified as a Hospice and Palliative Care Nurse with over eight years of experience in an inpatient hospice unit caring for people and their families during active dying.  She is a certified end-of-life doula specializing in end-of-life care planning, vigil, and bereavement. She is faculty in a program for end-of-life doulas, coaches, and educators.  Trish also teaches focused awareness meditation and mindfulness and uses those practices in her daily life.  Trish is a member of the Institute for the Study of Birth, Breath, and Death and offers the Institute Course; Loving, Dying, and Letting Go to groups online.  When she is not exploring ways to normalize talking about death she enjoys playing with her grandchildren, gardening, and reading.

Barak Morton holds an BSHS in Human Service Management and is currently attending Walden University for a Masters in Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling. Barak has been working in the mental health field since 2008 and has been holding space for a wide spectrum of populations. As a Marine Corp Veteran, Barak is proud to say that his two children are currently serving as active-duty Marines. Barak’s passion for veterans and adolescents has spanned his career as he has professionally supported youth in the juvenile justice system as well as helping begin a program for homeless veterans in Stanislaus County, California. Barak is experienced in running  support groups for a myriad of at-risk populations including juveniles and adults on probation. Barak is passionate about the work of the Institute for the Study of Birth, Breath and Death. He is both an Institute Teacher of the Loving, Dying or Letting Go workshop as well as a Holding Space Consultant.

Alicia Suárez holds a BCE from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez. She also holds certifications as an educator, birth/postpartum doula, breast/chest feeding counselor, and yoga teacher. Alicia’s compassionate and mindful presence enables her to hold space for people navigating significant life changes including, but not limited to, death of a loved one, separation/divorce, pregnancy complications, caring for elderly/sick parents, loss of income/job, and the passing of beloved pets. Her work is greatly influenced by her studies in Body-Mind Centering®, as well as her background in perinatal psychology and mindfulness meditation. In 2013, Alicia founded La Luna Azul, a full-spectrum provider of holistic childbirth services located in New York City which focuses on supporting a spectrum of families through birth, adoption and/or surrogacy. In addition to offering Holding Space Consultations, Alicia is also a teacher of the Loving, Dying, and Letting Go workshop and has been trained by the Institute in art of group facilitation. She is humbled at the opportunity to witness and support the emotional journey of people of all races, gender identities, and financial standing. Alicia is fully bilingual and happy to offer her services in both English and Spanish. Learn more.

Dawn Welburn is an ordained interfaith/interspiritual minister, a clinical/intuitive massage therapist, a full-spectrum doula, and a creatrix of jewelry, poetry, and art. She has recently relocated to Austin, Texas to pursue graduate studies at AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine. Through The Institute for the Study of Birth, Breath and Death, Dawn is a certified teacher of the courses Holding Space for Pregnancy Loss, and Loving, Dying, & Letting Go, as well as a certified facilitator of Pregnancy Loss Support Groups. Dawn lives a seeker’s journey that involves reawakening, rediscovering, and reconnecting to herself and the world. Helping others during their own self-discovery, holding space for each individual wherever they are right now, with all of the tools she is learning along her own path, is her Ministry and Service. Learn more. 

Erin Collins, RN BSN CHPN is a certified hospice and palliative care nurse with 14 years of experience in hospice and adult and pediatric oncology. She is the founder of The Peaceful Presence Project, a non-profit organization with a mission to reimagine the way communities talk about, plan for and experience the end of life. She has been a yoga practitioner for 25 years, and has been teaching yoga as the cycle of life and death for 12 years. Erin is also trained as an end-of-life doula, an advance care planning educator and is pursuing a masters degree in nursing education. She educates and empowers families to be present with their loved ones in the final stage of life, however long that may be, and believes that by talking about and planning for death with our loved ones, we can ease much of the suffering that arises at the end of life. Learn more. 

Adriane Weller holds a Bachelor of Engineering Degree, Minor in Arts from McGill University. She is a certified Life Coach, Life-Cycle Celebrant, Pregnancy Loss Doula, Yoga Teacher, Postpartum Professional, and passionate community educator. Through the Institute for the Study of Birth Breath and Death Adriane is certified as a teacher of Loving, Dying, and Letting Go, and a facilitator of Pregnancy Loss Circles of Support.  She has traversed much terrain, both exterior and interior to herself, and is dedicated to bringing out and responding to the truth and authenticity of all she meets. As a trained End of Life Doula Adriane companions others through illness, dying, death and bereavement, while offering services and guidance in Advance Care Planning, End of Life Planning, Family-Led Death Care and Natural Burial. She is passionate about tending to fear and confusion around dying and death and replacing it with education and awareness to unearth more autonomous, meaningful and resonant choices in all moments and thresholds of life.


Lori Benson Adams holds a Master’s Degree in Special Education, is a certified Life Design coach, and a yoga and mindful meditation teacher.  As the founder of Soulprints , Lori helps others in living a life of intentionality, meaning and authenticity.  With over 35 years as an educator of both children and adults, Lori utilizes interactive strategies, mindfulness tools, and  creative personal and group engagement to lead Loving, Dying and Letting Go courses.  She is grateful to the work of Amy Wright Glenn, who’s book Holding Space:  Loving, Dying and Letting Go transformed her own personal journey of saying goodbye to a loved one.  Lori offers one-on-one coaching support and courses on Life-Design Journaling, Mindful Meditation and Unearthing Your Soulprint.  When not teaching (but always learning!) Lori works as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), serving children who have been abused or neglected.  She lives with her husband and two pups on a farm. Learn more here. 

Kathleen Putnam is a certified life coach specializing in Life’s Transitions through Grief and Loss and is a founding member of the Gental Passage Doula Collective in Seattle WA.  She holds a Masters in Science from Bastyr University and is the founder of Nutrition Works and life coaching practice located in Seattle WA.  Kathleen has decades of education, consulting and counseling experience in private practice, community health and higher education.  She supervises graduate students at Bastyr Natural Health Clinic, consults with the cardiology clinic at Speck Health, and serves as Associate Professor of Nutrition and Human Development in multiple higher education in Seattle.  Kathleen a foundation of skills and tools of mindfulness, responsive education, group facilitation, and coaching offering a healing presence for those experiencing transitions in health, loss, grief, and end of life.  Kathleen is known for her compassion, communication and ability to meet people where they’re at while creating a safe and loving space free of shame and stigma. Kathleen is thrilled to offer her services as a consultant and teacher with the Institute of Birth Breath and Death. Her services include coaching, group facilitation, and speaking engagements, and webinars for individuals and groups specifically designed to support individuals and groups through life transitions of loss, health, and end-of-life. Learn more.

Sheila-Rea York is proudly known in her family caregiver circles as “Dorothy Mae’s Eldest Daughter”.  She dedicated herself to her mother’s at-home care during 15 years and 4 months, including seven years of hospice-level bedbound care.  Rea draws on practical and spiritual lessons learned from her mother to personalize services for caregivers and self-caring individuals through Caregiver Option, LLC, a boutique caregiver support company.  This lifelong learner is a Loving, Dying, and Letting Go teaching certificant, Certified Caregiver Consultant (Denise M. Brown, The Caregiving Years Training Academy), Social Work Advocate, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Family-to-Family peer, NAMI Support Group Facilitator, former American Cancer Society Volunteer Educator, and Licensed Massage Therapist trained in Touch Therapy for Trauma SurvivorsTM.  With pragmatic compassion, Rea’s approach is to arm with education, prepare as much as one can, practice various courses so they become familiar, and let go of attachment to specific outcomes.  She seeks to help people end up feeling they made great use of time and are able to cherish the unfolding.  Rea converses in English, French, and Spanish, and studies Haitian Creole.

Jessica Rae Kilbourn holds a Master’s Degree in Liberal Studies in Women’s Studies (now Women’s and Gender Studies) with a concentration in Leadership and Counseling from Eastern Michigan University (1997) and a BS in Sociology with a Social Work concentration with a double minor in Women’s Studies and Family Life and Human Sexuality (1995) from Central Michigan University. Jess (she/her) has the pleasure of teaching in the Women’s And Gender Studies Department at EMU since January of 1999 and also teaching in the only Michigan women’s prison in the State of Michigan, Women’s Huron Valley, for the last decade. Jess is a Massage Therapist and Bodyworker of 22 years in her community and a recent certified Reiki Master Teacher. The unfolding of Jess’ work in the world involves being a certified End-of-Life Doula (EOLD) for the last four years with a small collective of EOLDs,  as well as, offering comfort touch to those that are dying and offering grief massage and healing sessions for the bereaved. Jess’ interest in justice, Movements, advocacy and healing for all marginalized communities, but especially those who are survivors of Domestic Violence/Intimate Partner Violence and sexual harm, incarcerated communities, LGBTQIA2S+, BIPOC and women, allows for her to be compassionate, empathetic, respectful and willing to hold space for others as they move through life’s cycles and seasons, one breath at a time. With deep humility, Jess is honored to be a part of the Institute. Learn more.

Danielle Pacific holds a BS in Biology, became a Manual Therapist shortly after and remains fascinated with anatomy and movement. She trained in the Hatha style of Yoga and became a Birth Doula with ToLabor, and recently was trained by Bodhi be and INELDA as an End-of-Life Doula. She currently lives in Hawaii, and is passionate about learning indigenous Hawaiian culture and brings this information into Loving, Dying and Letting go. She holds Women’s Grief Groups and One-on-One Grief Sessions, mostly via zoom during this pandemic. Danielle values the lessons Amy shares about Holding Space and Companioning others , and has found her generosity and kindness are ever evolving as her work deepens. Learn more.


Diana X. Muniz has a BA degree in Education.  She attended the University of Houston and studied Journalism/ Public Relations.  She is presently finishing her Masters in Chaplaincy while working as both a Hospital and Hospice Chaplain.  Diana also recently received a scholarship to begin Doula Training and a Conscious Dying Educator Certificate with the Conscious Dying Institute. After college, Diana began teaching Art in MECA (Multicultural Education and Counseling Through the Arts) and with award winning non-profit Children’s Prison Arts Project.  She has 20 years experience teaching Art in Montessori, Public and Private School and was also a mural artist for the Museum of Fine Arts Houston and educator for their Parent Center.  Diana has curated many exhibits for local and nationally renown artists and curated altar exhibits for “Día de los Muertos” (Day of the Dead).  She has taught many community workshops about the Day of the Dead tradition and how the celebration brings Beauty and Healing to the community.    Diana looks forward to sharing “Loving, Dying and Letting Go” with Spanish-speaking communities locally, nationally and internationally.

This book is like a superhero, showing us how to run bravely toward the darkness and come out the other side as a human being. Amy deserves not just praise for writing in gorgeous, clear prose, but deep thanks for creating a gentle guide we all need for that one thing no one escapes: death.
—Tina Cassidy, Birth  
Doula, chaplain, theologian, mother, wounded daughter, philosopher, lover, Amy Wright Glenn writes with poetry and power… Holding Space, part memoir and part spiritual exploration, is brilliantly written and asks the central question we all face in this life. ‘What does it mean to love, die and let go?’
—Patricia Harman, Arms Wide Open and The Midwife of Hope River 
In Holding Space Amy Wright Glenn delivers a thoughtful and poetic meditation on bringing mindful presence to the two major transition points in life: birth and death. Utilizing stories from her personal life and her experiences as a birth doula and a hospital chaplain, Amy reveals how we can keep our hearts open to both deep sorrow and ecstatic joy in these ‘sacred thresholds.’ You will find wisdom, love, and tenderness on every page of this very special book.
—Henry Fersko-Weiss, Executive Director of the International End of Life Doula Association,
Caring for the Dying 

“I am a doula. I am also a hospital chaplain. In holding space for birthing and dying, I’ve come to see one thing clearly. Standing with an open heart in the presence of birth is very much like standing with an open heart in the presence of death.”

~ Amy Wright Glenn

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