I have been forever on this sacred path of serving as a soul midwife.
As Lori Safford, I was born in Detroit, Michigan, the third oldest of six siblings. I have been blessed with four sons (all now adults), and four grandchildren (thus far). I have enjoyed many occupations: school principal, teacher, lay midwife, nurse, waitress, bartender, hot-line worker, gardener, dishwasher, basketball & soccer & softball coach, tutor, free-lance writer, non-profit grant writer, to name a few…
I am profoundly grateful for every encounter that prompts self-reflection, personal growth, and a refocusing of my attention.
Above all else, my Faith and my commitment to Service to Others have remained my touchstones.
I embrace wholistic energy healing practices such as acupuncture, homeopathy, massage, polarity, herbal & flower essences as personal healing modalities.
Yoga, meditation, prayer and aromatherapy are also essential aspects of my daily life practice.
About Soul Midwifery
For as long as folks have been dying, caring folks have kept vigil by the bedside or in a field, along a forest path or in a trench, holding a hand and blessing the passing of Spirit. Since this benevolent act has become an identified sacred role–25 years ago or so–the person’s title is varied and personal: death doula, end-of-life doula, death midwife, circle-of-life practitioner, death walker, soul midwife. Indeed, sociologists Krawczyk and Rush (2020) wanted to know not only what these death-watcher folks wanted to be called, but also what exactly was the scope of the practice. The researchers interviewed 22 people from four countries, and listed 16 different names provided by the interviewees. Krawczyk & Rush, Dec. 2020
I called myself a soul midwife long before I learned about The Soul Midwives’ School in England, founded by Felicity Warner. I was honored to be accepted to her school as a distance learner. After two years of inspired study, I am so blessed to enrich my 40 year nursing and hospice experience with many of Felicity’s wise, sacred and practical teachings.
(Check out Felicity Warner’s website here.)
Code of Practice for The Soul Midwives’ School
- I will respect my ‘friends’ and their loved ones’ confidentiality and dignity at all times.
- I will work harmoniously with all associated health professionals, doctors, nurses and the friends’ careers in all settings and facilities.
- I will refrain from sharing my own religious beliefs, and I will follow the Soul Midwives’ School non-denominational approach.
- I will respect my friend’s faith as part of the Soul Midwives’ School’s acceptance of all faiths.
- I will be supportive of other Soul Midwives within the School.
- I will refrain from diagnosing illness or claiming to cure or heal medical conditions.
- I will not do anything that might bring Soul Midwives and our work into disrepute.
- I will only carry out treatments and give advice within an area in which I am professionally qualified.
- I will keep full and accurate records of all friends and all treatments carried out and store records in accordance with the legislative rules of my country of residence.
My Formal Education
PhD. Educational Leadership (Capella University, Duluth MN)
Ed.S. K-12 Education Administration (Oakland University, Rochester MI)
M.A. Linguistics (Oakland University, Rochester MI)
B.A. English (University of Maine, Orono ME)
LPN (Kirtland College, Roscommon MI)
Certificates & Continued Areas of Study
- Hospice Volunteer–Androscoggin Home Healthcare & Hospice (Auburn, ME)
- LPN (Maine)
- Master Gardener
- K–12 Building Administrator (Maine)
- Professional Teaching (Maine): Secondary Ed.
- Teaching English as a Second Language
- Notary Public (Maine)
- 45 years in nursing
- 30 years in hospice
The short animation–WHY ME?— illustrates the reactions of one individual whose doctor has just told him he will soon die. In a terse and sometimes humorous dialogue with his doctor, Nesbitt Spoon runs the gamut of emotions commonly experienced by people trying to deal with this devastating yet universal situation.