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When you hit that age you begin to think about retirement, there’s also that other thought of your will that you’ve pushed to the back of your mind one time too many. 

H received his retirement packet in the mail yesterday and after ingesting the twelve pages of do’s and don’t’s, the big W question came to mind. 

It’s not that we have a fortune to disburse among the heirs, but there’s a little here and a smidgen there. There’s also my family, our family, me, and him. If something disasterous happened to both of us at the same time, it could be a mess if we let it be. 

We need beneficiaries on everything from the bank accounts and annuities to the stocks, properties, and vehicles. That’s the easy part. We might as well take care of all of this in one fell swoop! My head is spinning with the thought of it all. 

The problem we have is all this stuff. Whose name shall we put on those ten billon screws in the workroom and countless old tools? There’s the old ceiling fan in the new ceiling fan box and the old fixtures from the bathroom packed neatly in the new fixture box. At least H is keeping it neat and tidy.

If you can make your way to the back of the workroom you will find a gold mine in old used carburetors from cars not around anymore. Who shall benefit from those? 

Should I question who wants or deserves those too-many-back-issues of National Geographic bundled neatly in the storage unit?  Show of hands? 

Maybe we should just put a beneficery on the storage unit itself. That storage unit could maybe hit it big on an episode of Storage Wars! Or maybe not. 

To be honest there is some good stuff in all this old junk. Mainly my stuff to be exact. But of course we all think our own stuff is the best. I know H thinks his is the best even though it’s not! 

There’s too much to list one by one in a will, so I think I’ll start labeling anything worthwhile with a name and then there will be no question. 

It’s easier this way. Trust me. I know. H’s mother had it all in order from naming an executor for her estate to beneficeries on her bank accounts and life insurances. We were lucky. I want our kids to be lucky. 

I’ve made a list of items to be checked off and instead of getting shorter it’s growing longer day-by-day. May thirty-first is H’s retirement date. What happened to the time? Just yesterday it was five years and now we turn around and it’s less than four months! 

I realize he’s not dying, just retiring, but it’s a small step in that direction. We went out to eat last night and the dinner talk consisted of wills, bills, and budgets. 

Our daily conversation lately has been about Social Security, VA, Medicare, and health insurance. We’ve been lucky his work has covered health insurance. Now we’ve thrown The Will in the mix. 

Since I’m the worrier in the family, I woke at three o’clock this morning with numbers refusing to add up in my head and piles of paperwork growing bigger. I worry about things I shouldn’t worry about and if there isn’t anything to worry about I invent something. 

H is taking this in stride. Maybe I should too. 


About Elle Knowles

Elle Knowles lives in the Florida Panhandle with her husband and off-at-college-most-of-the-time son. She has four daughters, one son, and eleven beautiful grandchildren. 'Crossing the Line' is her first novel. The sequel 'What Line' is a work in progress. Recently published is Coffee-Drunk Or Blind - a nonfiction story of homesteading in the Alaska wilderness with her parents and four siblings, told through letters by her mother and remembered accounts from the family.

11 responses »

  1. My husband retired last year and we actually got the Will out of the way before that. We did everything at once….living will, will, POA, medical POA. Like you, we didn’t want to leave a mess behind if something happened to both of us at once. We’ve also been traveling more since he retired, so that factored into the decision as well.

    I lost my mom in 2012, but she had everything covered right down to pre-paid funeral arrangements, and it was a huge burden off her children. Yet even with that, there was still so much to do. I’m forever grateful she had in place what she did.

    And yes, we talk stocks, wills and insurance now too, LOL!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, those 3 a.m. thoughts! Reminds me I ought to be tackling those issues myself…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You never realize how much work goes into where everything will go when you go. It can consume you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve been retired 4 years and have yet to write a will. I think about it. I want to make sure someone takes the cats. I don’t have kids so it’s not a simple answer. My husband has kids but I don’t consider them “will savvy.” Perhaps I’ll leave my stuff to a shelter.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Or maybe not “cat savvy”? Lol! We inherited cats with the house. The two brothers refused to acknowledge them. There were four and now only one plus a stray. We were not cat people, but now we are…kinda…
      I think about that will a lot. Usually in bed or while driving. At all the times I can’t do anything about it!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. There something to be said for taking care of business, unsavory or otherwise. Once it’s done you’ll feel a weight has been lifted.

    We all worry. I have a magnet on my fridge that says…today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.

    Life’s short. Should be the global anthem. A true, honest post Elle. Your candor is applauded. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


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