As an older mum, I’m 47 with a 3 year old little boy and a husband 8 years younger than me, I worry about the future of our little family. Plus I am a women, all women like to talk and I want to talk about death. My husband isn’t so keen.
Recently we seem to have been surrounded by death. In the past 18 months we lost my husband’s Grandad. He’d had a good innings at 91 but it was still a great loss. We lost my Grandma at 97, which was devastating but again a great age and my dad’s brother passed away too – I didn’t see him much but still a loss for my dad. On top of these personal experiences, a friend has been left devastated by the sudden death of his dad and more recently a guy I have worked with who fought cancer for 6 years passed away leaving his wife and young son.
It’s the latter that has made me think long and hard about the need to lay out some plans incase death strikes our little family of 3 before it should. My friend knew what the outcome was going to be so I am sure as a family they had discussed it and their young son was aware of the inevitable but it still breaks my heart to think of a little family being torn apart and left to rebuild their unit. I don’t know whether having the time to talk and prepare is better than it suddenly happening.
I know I have the need to talk about death with Mr S but not with a 3 year old. He hasn’t asked about Great Grandma or Great Grandad yet, I’m not sure what we will say, I suspect he won’t ask for a few years, pictures of them suffice.
Men don’t like to talk!
Mr S isn’t one for talking, let alone about dying. When he has something on his mind, I can hear him ‘thinking out loud’!! As my husband and my son’s daddy I need to know my wishes are in place, not just so I get what I want, after all I won’t know, but to make things easier for him and my family that are left behind.
I know of families that have fallen out over funeral plans, fallen out over the Will, I don’t want that, it’s just not needed. Mr S will have enough on his hands with the Rockstar and clearly grieving for his loss, without worrying about what happens next.
As an ‘organiser’ I want my funeral to run like clockwork, in fact I’ve already written the ‘event schedule’ for it! I’ve made suggestions on where the after party should be, food and drink. It’s what my friends would expect of me. Mr S ignores me when I tell him.
I haven’t got a huge amount of ‘special items’ but I’ve listed who should have what. I imagine the girls going through the wardrobe for coats and handbags whilst drinking fizz.
The next thing I want to do is get back to writing more emails and blogs for Rocco to read over the years. I have no intention of leaving him just yet and I hope I will still be around when he reads them but just in case something happens, I need to get back on top of that. I constantly fill his memory box of reminders of our adventures. I print off lots of pictures and pop them in little albums for him to flip through. (FreePrints is the best app ever!)
Mr S and I have talked briefly about what happens if we both die at the same time. Who would have Rocco? It’s an easy one for me when we have such close siblings whose morals and values are the same as ours, so it’s not actually something I really worry about. Once we decided that Rocco would be an only child I did panic somewhat about him being alone but that’s not a concern since we have talked about it.
Since we have been talking about death, Mr S has told me of a few things he would like at his funeral, I didn’t know these things, so talking has helped. It hasn’t felt morbid, yes it’s an awful thought and one I hope we don’t go through for some time but you just don’t know.
I’ve downloaded some info on writing my own Will just so it is there in writing. Although for me it’s not about who gets what, it’s more about making sure people know how I feel about them.
If the recent past has taught me anything, it’s taught me to talk more about what happens next, it’s not morbid, yes it’s a bit scary, but it needs to be done. Mr S hates it, I guess maybe most men do, but I need to find out what he wants, work on that bucket list, call the mate I haven’t spoken to for a while and just spend some time doing the fun stuff.