Malaprop’s Bookstore / Cafe – Bridging the Gap Book Signing
February 19 @ 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm ESTFree
Kimberly C. Paul chose to leave her dream job in television and film to discover the authentic stories at the bedside of the dying. Working for hospice was supposed to only be a temporary job until she could build relationships in the film industry in Wilmington, NC. But this temporary job spread over 17 years as Vice President of Communications and Outreach for a local hospice. It never crossed Kimberly’s mind that her true calling would find her and lead to unexpected and bold intentions to become one of the leaders in the death positive movement happening in the United States today.
Throughout nearly two decades of hospice experience, Kimberly experienced grief from the loss of young co-workers and many hospice patients as she captured their life stories in order to celebrate the lives they lived. Yet, one loss would come as a total gut-wrenching surprise. As she was attending a hospice co-worker’s wedding, a totally stranger informed her that her recent ex-boyfriend lost his life to cancer at the age of 30. Kimberly tells the complete story within her newly published book, Bridging the Gap, that can be purchased on her website at www.deathbydesign.com/buy-bridging-the-gap-by-kimberly-c-paul/. This startling news lead Kimberly on an FBI investigation to find out the details of what happened to the boy she loved and discovered in the end that the boy was protecting her from a loss that he felt would have been too much for her to bear. This discovery made her mission at hospice very personal and sparked a passion that she is now living.
Kimberly left her job at hospice in December 2016, cashed in her retirement and created a new platform that invites everyone around the table to have open conversations about death and dying. She created a podcast, Death by Design, that hosts industry leaders in medicine as well as artists, designers, caregivers and authors who are reclaiming their voice around their own experiences with death and dying. Each conversation is meant to inspire others to engage in difficult conversations around their own deaths, actively make decisions about how and where they want to die and begin to change the taboo subject of death and dying into the ultimate gift of connection with family and friends. Death by Design Podcast is in its 2nd season and continues to normalize difficult conversations, discover ordinary individuals making extraordinary differences in their local communities and highlight people who are developing new ways to assist the Baby Boomers as they design their own end of life.
Since her book, Bridging the Gap, was published on April 13th, 2018, Kimberly is on to her next adventure of speaking throughout the United States. But she is doing it a little differently than anyone expected. In June 2018, she bought an RV, downsized her belongings and hit the road with her German Shepherd, Haven. Kimberly has named her adventure the “Live Well Die Well Tour” because she states, “The more I talk about death, the more boldly I feel I’m living life to the fullest.”
The tour jump started in Ohio alongside her ex-boyfriend’s parents (the boy who lost his life to cancer over 18 years ago). Kimberly states, “It was a way to put meaning into the beginning of the tour – to make sure it is always personal.” Now she is making her way through every state, with exception of Hawaii, to connect with people and communities, sign books and share how she learned to live life boldly at the bedside of hospice patients.
The Live Well Die Well tour is supported by over 20 sponsors including Cabot Cheese, My Last Soundtrack, Amedisys Hospice, INEDLA, National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, POLST Paradigm and many more who support community education in an effort to empower individuals to reclaim death as a human experience and not a medical event.
You can follow the tour at www.livewelldiewelltour.com.
You can support the tour by purchasing Bridging the Gap at www.deathbydesign.com/buy-bridging-the-gap-by-kimberly-c-paul/.
When Kimberly was asked, ‘What are you finding on the road as you travel?” She simply answered, “I am finding hope in humanity again. I’m finding connection with complete strangers. I’m finding goodness in people. Even if our views are different we still can connect as human beings. I’m finding that living boldly is hard but worth every minute.”