My best friend, Connie, left town yesterday, after spending several days with me helping accomplish several things.
One of those 'things' was to meet with my lawyer to finalize giving her my Power Of Attorney, a Health Care Directive, and a Will. There are still some details and blanks I need to fill in, but I feel releived now that it's been pushed forward.
However, what I wasn't prepared for were the emotions I felt. I didn't expect it at all. I looked at it as a 'task'; just paper stuff, but of great importance.
When I was diagnosed with PSP early August, 2012, during that visit with my Neuro plus 2 additional visits scheduled closely together, he strongly emphasized the importance of getting these things done asap, as well as finish any unfinished business. It was stunning to hear and rocked my world.
I talked at length with my therapist about how I felt about his directives. Shelly, my therapist, is in her 30's. She calmly told me that every adult, even young adults, should especially have a health care directive in place, because if a person should sustain a substantial head injury or a severe illness that cognitively impairs that person, it becomes a hot mess without one. Basically, it's too late; get it in place early in life; it can always be tweaked later on.
She said the same about power of attorney. She and her husband had already assigned their's to each other, as well as had a will, etc.
I don't know how many times in my adult life I've heard or been encouraged to get a will in place, health care directive, and power of attorney. But I always rejected it out-of-hand. Nah, don't need it, I'm too young, etc. etc. etc.
So as I sat in the conference room with Connie and my attorney, putting my thoughts, do's and dont's together on paper, I felt a rush of creepy, I'm circling the drain, and most importantly....why didn't I do this when I was healthy?????????? During that process, I realized tho it might've seemed a little creepy or 'over-kill', pardon the pun, to do it earlier in life and/or when I was well, it sure would of been easier than doing it when I'm sick.
Please encourage the people in your world you care about, young and older, to take care of this business now, when they're well. Then it's done. It can always be revisited later. Doing it when you're unwell was quite an unpleasant experience and only because I didn't want to take responsibility for my affairs. Life turns on a dime. It's never too soon.