like any other Saturday morning…

by Bella Rum

signing-a-willIt’s another overcast day here in the cul-de-sac. We’re sitting here in the office, coffee cups at the ready, each of us pecking away. I’m posting and H is doing his will. He’s leaving me the whole circus, all three rings and every single tent. Sweet boy.

Technically, we already had wills, but we made them thirty years ago when my son was a minor. We had no grandchildren, and my sister, now deceased, was the executor. Our situation has changed significantly, and the old will was no longer appropriate.

I can’t believe we didn’t do both wills at the same time, but there’s a reason for that. When I was sick last December and January and had to undergo the heart catheterization, I had no will. I quickly did a will on LegalZoom, and chose the overnight delivery.  Understandably, we were under some pressure and time constraints, so H did not attempt to make his will at that time. He said he’d do it as soon as, “this little crisis is behind us.”

My will arrived in time, but we could not get it notarized because the hospital did not offer notary services. (What’s up with that? Am I behind the times? Wasn’t that a service hospitals and banks offered once upon a time? No longer. Banks will not notarize wills either. Not our bank or hospital. So don’t count on it.) When the “little crisis” was over, my will shifted to the back burner, and from time to time either of us could be heard to say, “We have to take care of the wills.” Ho hum.

We are finally doing it. The colonoscopy prompted me to get mine finalized, and he’s doing the same before his colonoscopy on February 5. Please, don’t point out that  we’re much less likely to die from a colonoscopy than an auto accident. We don’t like logic.

Did you know that if you want to be cremated you have to document it? A member of  your family could object. This happened to someone I knew. He had a brother and three sisters. Even though he told all of them that he wanted to be cremated, he neglected to document it in his will or medical directive. Upon his death, two of his sisters objected and refused to relent. People are funny and sometimes very stubborn.

I remember when one of H’s cousins called and asked if he would object to exhuming their Uncle Theodore’s remains  and moving them to the family grave site about thirty miles away. He had lived in Richmond and was buried there a very long time ago. When his wife died, she was planted in the family plot, but now he was “all alone” and H’s cousin’s mother (Uncle Theodore’s sister) (on her death-bed) made H’s cousin promise to get Uncle’s remains moved to the family plot where he could rest throughout eternity with his wife and the rest of the clan.

H said it was fine with him. His cousin said that all the remaining seven cousins had to agree or they could not do it. The lawyer told her to expect one of the seven cousins to object. He said there was always one that spoiled the pie.

About a month later, H’s cousin called again. She told H that one cousin had objected; Uncle Theodore would remain all alone in Richmond. H asked her which cousin had refused. She said, “Your brother.” H asked why. Apparently he felt that Uncle Theodore had been at rest all these many years, and he saw no reason to disturb him now.

Make your wishes known and document them. People are unpredictable.