Part one in a series regarding death, assets and trusts, from a professional and personal experience point of view.
Death – gotta deal with it. Morose, you say? Not at all. It’s reality.
We’re all born, we die, we pay taxes. Not necessarily in that order.
Each time I learn of a person’s death, whether it be one I know or through a friend of mine, I’m reminded death is imminent. Even young people are not exempt. Newsflash, I know, yet most are afraid to confront death.
The Greatest Gift
When Mom died sixteen months ago, I had no idea how much I would appreciate the greatest gift she gave. Not a house, estate, specific asset, clothing or rare books. It was her trust, her written instructions of her DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) her completed plan and pre-paid cremation. It was her gift of peace.
Before Mom died, death played little part in my life. My grandparents passed away years ago, that experience a further distance from one’s own parent. I am in a quandary whilst dealing with another family member, not knowing for certain what their plan is. It’s causing anxiety in me. The anxiety stems from little to no cooperation, the hesitation from the family member to share pertinent information which is necessary to help them. Why such hesitancy? How much does fear reflect inaction? If not for the recent experience of Mom’s death, there would be less anxiety, as I now under understand, fully, completely the significance of her gift.
Expect the Unexpected
It was brought to my attention today at my weekly meeting that a colleague’s neighbor passed away last night, completely unexpected. In addition, he was young (mid-forties) and not married though lived for years with his girlfriend. Evidently, no will, trust in place. Of course this is all hearsay, though got me thinking a lot about Mom’s death and my own mortality.
While married, my husband and I were on the ball regarding a trust. As one was put together for my dad-in-law, he and I wasted no time having the attorney do one for us as well. At the time (almost 10 years ago) I didn’t hesitate having it done, yet didn’t see the value either. As parents of younger kiddos at the time, hubby and I weren’t gonna leave this earth anytime soon. But it made sense at the time, mostly due to simple default: almost a two-for-one.
Recently divorced, I shall begin the process of having a new trust written up in my own name. No longer dependent on my ex-husband to proceed with such matters, I’m awake, paying attention and taking note of my life – and my death. My children, both adults now, will not be put in a precarious place upon my death. They will experience my death though they will also experience my gift – the gift of peace, protection and love.
One not need be an old person to confront death. I find the more I deal with this subject straight on, fear diminishes.
How prepared are you for your loved one’s death? Are they prepared or do they need your assistance? Are you having difficulty helping them confront their own mortality or even discussing the subject of death in general? Help and resources abound. Where to turn, whom to trust?
Next time, resources and different options in confronting loved one’s regarding death.