Life is full of tough decisions – what to wear to work, what car to buy, what players to pick for your fantasy football team – but there’s one thing no one wants to make a decision on: death. No one wants to think about death. It doesn’t matter if your faith tells you there’s a heaven/hell/giant candy playground in the sky when you kick the bucket, no one wants to accept that it’ll happen to them. Other people die, you never will, you’re immortal until proven otherwise.
I know, I know, it sucks.
But you know what else sucks?
Not talking about it, especially to your family.
Have you talked to your family about living arrangements if you’re unable to care for yourself? Do you want a DNR? Who will make sure they play that horrible country song at your funeral? If you haven’t, you need to sit down right now and do it. Don’t say, “Oh, I’ll do it tomorrow, it’s too depressing to talk about today,” or “Just put me wherever you want,” sit down and make those tough decisions now so your family isn’t scrambling later, trying to figure out what you want.
You don’t know where to begin, you say. There’s too much info out there. It’s too expensive to hire a lawyer. I’m too young – I’ll worry about it when I retire.
Stop making excuses. You’re only hurting your family. Death can happen tomorrow or a thousand tomorrows.
Colby and I are looking at options for living arrangements for his dad, hence the post, but his dad hasn’t given us any info at all and is reticent about telling us what he wants. It’s a bit frustrating to say the least.
Good news is there are a lot of resources on the web to help, sites to help you customize documents from things like Power of Attorney to a written complaint to the BBB to eviction notices. Personally, I used RocketLawyer.com to help. Their forms are pretty idiot-proof, just choose the document you want to create, input your state (since each state has different requirements) and give them the info they want.
They offer a free one week trial, so I logged in and created documents for everything I might need in the future: bill of sale, request for bank or credit reference, acceptance of service (no idea why I might need that one), and so on. Since I don’t have specific information, I input the field names and saved the document as a Word doc to edit in the future.
So sit down with your family, talk about the future, funerals, etc. Don’t leave them scrambling. Yes, this means you, Mr. 34-year-old.
Also, make sure all of your important documents are easily accessible – birth certificates, marriage licenses, divorce decrees, list of medical conditions/meds, and so on. I made a pretty list for our cars and emergency household kit – names, birthdays, important contacts, blood types, allergies, current medications, insurance info, etc. – in case we’re incapacitated and someone needs to know. I can upload a pretty PDF if y’all would like to use it – just let me know in the comments!
All seriousness aside, LIVE your life – treasure every moment, every hug, every slice of pizza. You never know, Skynet might take over tomorrow and outlaw chocolate.
Because I could not stop for death, He kindly stopped for me; The carriage held but just ourselves and immortality. — Emily Dickinson