Hello and welcome to another edition of Ed’s Monthly Letter.
I do apologize for the tardiness of this month’s letter. Just before my father passed on, he asked “Watch after your mother until I get back”. So, what does a man do? He looks after his mother of course.
Last week I spent the night in the Emergency Room looking after mom, one night until 8:30 am. (I have not stayed up for 24 hours or more since college.) Mom is OK now and we are taking steps to make her better.
These two events have led me to scrap the letter I was working on and discuss health care and life events. After 25 years of being a trusted advisor, I have experienced most client concerns that could be addressed. From officiating a wedding to delivering a eulogy and everything in between. So, this letter is a brief discussion on recent life events.
Health insurance is very important and should not be overlooked. Some people self-insure and most need to share the burden with an insurance company. Please don’t take health care for granted. Review your policy and see what it covers. For us, we knew we could go to the hospital 10 minutes away instead of our provider’s hospital 20 minutes away. Sometimes minutes matter. Do you know what your insurance provides for? Do you know what hospital you can go to? Do you know how to get to the hospital? These are the biggest takeaways for us in the last week. I hope you can do a mental dry run through this. Call me with questions and I can help steer you in the right direction.
While mom was sleeping and probes and wires and things were sticking out of her, I was asked if I was her care giver. I said, “Yes she is my mother”. They asked for paperwork. Wow! I had no documentation with me because it was a sudden trip to the ER. I thought we had everything in order. The last documentation we had was when my father was alive, and he was her everything. I ask you this, do you have updated legal documents? Do you have an updated trust? Who has the say when you are in the hospital? Where are your documents? Does the person taking care of you in these circumstances know where your documents are?
I am a man who also learns from what went wrong and what could be better. I have created a one-page list for mom and myself. It has a list of our medications, our doctors, emergency phone numbers, directions to local hospitals and urgent care facilities. We have a designated place in the home where this and our legal documents are located so we can grab it and go. We have snacks and water bottles here also. I tell you what, at 2:30 in the morning most cafeterias are closed.
Lastly, I called my friend and personal Estate Attorney to update things. It was my responsibility to contact him. He was on it like fast on fast. I am not an attorney, nor do I practice law, so I cannot give legal advice, but I can share with you the nickels and dimes I have in my pockets. My attorney is Christopher G. Hartman. I have known Chris for 47 years. He knows Estate planning and I trust him. If you have any questions about the legal side of things, please let me know and I will share Chris’s number with you.
I only hope this can help you.