Legal Etc.

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss

No matter what stage of the journey you're at - newly diagnosed or enjoying a remission - it's never too soon to take care of life's housekeeping issues. Instead of looking at this as a morbid consequence of your illness - have fun with it! A lot of these topics are self-explanatory so here we go:

The "To-do List"
  1. First things first - review and/or finalize your Last Will and Testament. Make sure that a copy of it is in an obvious place along with other vital information such as - your bank account numbers, safety deposit box number (and key), power of attorney upon your death to access the foregoing, investment accounts and advisor's name, land deeds, lawyer's names, passwords etc.
  2. Who do you trust to carry out your medical wishes? Draw up a legal Power of Attorney for Personal Care also known as a Medical Power of Attorney. This document names the person responsible as well as a substitute to make medical decisions for you if you are unable to.
  3. Review and update your gift list - these are smaller items outside of your Will such as who will look after your budgie, who should get Grandma's charm bracelet and who will take care of Aunt Vi's Christmas cactus? Write everything down, date it and have someone witness it.
  4. Have you thought about your funeral - do you even want one? Do you want to be buried or cremated - have you arranged it - have you paid for it? Do you want them to play "Phantom of the Opera-esque" music or Bob Marley? Do you want a church service or a picnic by the lake in your memory? Did you always hate those little sandwiches they served after a funeral or would you rather they served wine and cheese; sushi and Japanese beer or nothing but desserts. Write it down!
  5. Do you want to tell someone something that you can't seem to voice? Put it in writing and mail the letter.
  6. Have you kept letters or other correspondence that you'd rather that your loved ones not find? Deal with them.
  7. What about that wedding dress in the back of the closet from your first trip up the aisle - for heavens sake - get rid of it!
  8. Share the secret ingredient in that cake recipe that you've been holding back for years!
  9. He always dared you, so go ahead and smoke marijuana with your nephew.
  10. Surprise everyone and throw your own "going away party" - I've attended one and it was a blast. Not a tear in the room - nothing but celebration and laughter. Dying is still living - so set an example and keep going!

In the words of Robert Frost:

"The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep."

| Home | Coping with Chemo | Reading & Resources | Hope & Healing | Nutrition | Recurrence | Friends & Family | About |

We strongly encourage you to talk with your health care professional about your specific medical condition and treatments. The information contained in this website is meant to be helpful and educational, but is not a substitute for medical advice.