Friday, August 7, 2009

Just in case...

I love this kid. I mean it-- I really, really love this son of mine. And not just because he's so adorable, or he has such a sweet smile, or his chittery-chattery laugh is so infectious... I love him because he is this physical embodiment of everything that is good about me, and everything that is good about Joel, and everything that is good about people in general-- and I am lucky enough to be his mother. I get the honor of taking care of him and helping him learn how to live in this world we've made. I get to nurture him through the achy, sore, yucky times, and sing along with him through the fun, silly, happy times. It's an amazing gift, and I feel so lucky to be able to share this time with him.

And it's really crazy how much this experience-- motherhood-- has made me slow down and take in every moment as if there may never be another one. Watching my son sleep and play and gaze with curiosity at everything around him has made me strangely and intensely aware of my own mortality. I've been really fixated lately on making sure that Joel and I have wills done before we leave on our trip at the end of August. Not that I think anything is going to happen, mind you; it's more like a "just-in-case-something-happens-while-you're-gone" policy, right alongside getting life insurance and making sure you have someone to water the plants or pick up the mail. I can't imagine leaving for a long trip without the baby, and not having something written down that designates a guardian for him. And I want to have videos and pictures attached to the will or accessible to the guardians (and updated regularly, of course) so that he will always have these memories saved for him. And unfortunately, the more I think about this topic, the more morbid it sounds.

It's not that I want to focus on where Ethan would go if anything happened to Joel and me, or fixate on the possibility of death; but now that I'm a parent, I can't help but have something in place for my son. I am responsible for him, whether I'm here or not, and that responsibility will never end. Ever. So if there's anyone out there who hasn't made a will yet, or set up guardians for their kids, do us all a favor and get it done. The one thing a loving parent does not want is for their child(ren) to be stuck in a long, drawn-out court scene, and possibly in court custody, while their living situation is being figured out. Personally, I want to designate those guardians myself, and make sure my baby will be with someone who will love and cherish him just as his own parents would.

Okay, enough of the morose and depressing conversation. But, please: go write your will.

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