Thursday, April 09, 2015

Making a will

Last year when all the air disasters started happening almost in succession, the paranoid and somewhat morbid me started worrying about what would happen to JED if anything, touch many pieces of wood, were to happen to us.

And while that is a scenario that I truly never want to consider and hope that it never ever happens, I didn't think it would wise to live in that much denial. Because my denial could one day hurt JED.

So, I started thinking about making a will.

To even make that decision to make a will was difficult. I pretty much had to stop being ostrich-like and pull my head out of the ground. And it was coming to terms with the possibility of my pre-deceasing the children.

That was hard.

But because Packrat and I occasionally travel without the children, it would truly be irresponsible for us to not have everything in place. I know of people who think that by doing so, we were cursing ourselves and our children by doing that.

We're travelling again, year end without JED. And I'm nervous about it. Every time there is yet another plane crash, I quake and shudder. But at the same time, it would be the beginning of a very huge and steep slippery slope if I stopped travelling because I was worried of orphaning my children. Then I ought to not drive because car accidents are so much more prevalent. And I shouldn't eat chicken and other hormonally enhanced meat because I could die of cancer... slippery slope.

So the only thing we could do short of cancelling the trip or carrying out a personal pre-flight check of all the aircraft we are flying (though lot of good that would do) was to get started on making the will. So I did eventually call up our lawyer friend to start the ball rolling. 

Preliminarily, he said we had to think about various things, including what our declarable assets were (not much!) and in my opinion, more importantly, who ought to be the executor of our will and who would be the legal guardians of JED. 

Apparently, the executor has to be someone who is good with the nitty gritty but also someone who knew the children because they would be the ones who would eventually have to deal with the executor. 

The executor and the legal guardians also had to be people who would be less likely to pre-decease us, meaning that they couldn't be aged or ill at this point. So no grandparents. Picking the executor, we felt was an easier decision to make because the executor's role is a short-termed one. The legal guardian, that was going to be a different matter.

It led to an interesting conversation between Packrat and myself about who ought to be JED's legal guardians. 

We had loose parameters: 
1. The people in question had to love kids even if they didn't have any. 
2. They had to be familiar with and to JED (Children stories are often have the poor protagonist staying with a mean aunt/ relative because the child had been orphaned) and loved  JED. So preferably people they were close  to. 
3. They had to be people who understood our parenting philosophy and hopefully would parent in approximately the same manner. 
4. They had to be people who would raise the children in strong Christian faith. 

The various parameters did whittle down some we were considering. Eventually our decision was to ask two of very close friends as well as one of our siblings. When I asked the sibling, the response was "YAY! Pizza and ice cream for dinner every day!" Ah hence, the need to for co-guardianship. 

But when I told our close friends it would be a co-guardianship arrangement, their response was "How's that going to work?" and my response to them was "We'll be dead. You all can go slug it out." 

Moments of reprieve and relief in what is obviously a very serious topic of conversation.


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