Veterans life insurance

Opinion: Packing up and moving on | Opinion

One early summer day many years ago, this writer was working outside in the yard as a new family moved in across the cul-de-sac. Seeing me, their very young son decided to say hello to me. Dragging a small wheeled suitcase, he walks up the driveway and asks, “Do you want to see my cars?”

His mother watched as her son pulled out a very large collection of tiny Matchbook cars, lining them up one by one on my driveway with a running commentary on each. She told me later that she thought to herself, “That poor man!

Over the years, my wife and I became very fond of the boy and his little sister who was born about a year and a half after the family moved in. As he grew, his verbal and social skills were impressive. Knowing that my wife and I love to travel, he always asked about our adventure plans. When we got back he would ask about the hotels, what we had seen, and it was amazing what he remembered and the conversations that ensued.

“He’s going to be a seller,” I said to myself.

Fast forward to a few days ago. The young man parked in the cul-de-sac with his own car, parking away from the moving vans that were loading goods from his parents’ house. As he got out of his vehicle, he greeted me and told me that he had come to say goodbye to his childhood home. He introduced me to the lovely lady who is at the center of his life. He is now 27, a college graduate and active in his church where he is a youth counselor. Recently he started a great new job as the Southeast Sales Manager for a growing company. He is well anchored, on a good path with strong values, and yes, he is a “seller”.

His sister is a college graduate and lives alone in Atlanta with a good job that excites her career ambitions. Parents have every reason to be proud of the children they have raised and guided to responsible adult life. A few years ago, as a second home, they bought a cabin at Lake Oconee, as the father, in particular, loved boating and golf. What they called a “cottage” would be considered a palace in many places around the world. Dad made the decision to retire at the end of this year, so he and mom, who gave up her job, decided to move to the cottage full time.

Mum admitted it was hard to leave the family home where they had lived for so long, raised their children and generated lasting memories. But it was time. So the moving trucks came and went. As this is written, the painters are preparing the house for the new owner.

Life transitions of all kinds are challenging, especially if you’ve been in a place or situation for a very long time. The mother recently lost her mother and father, so she had to deal with all the complications of concluding an estate, determining what was what, disposing of the family home. Now, while she can hope for a new life by the lake, merging a house into two means that everything you love and cherish won’t fit. What to let go, what to keep?

The oldest of the baby boomer cohort will turn 76 this year, and members of the previous so-called “silent generation” will be between 77 and 97. , widows and widowers, as well as their adult children. Gen Xers, ages 42-57 this year, are increasingly having to step in to deal with the health issues and care needs of mom and/or dad. All of this is on top of soaring inflation, 9.1% year over year, impending college and other expenses, and perhaps career decisions and pressures in our post-COVID economy. Often the benchmark “alpha child” is a daughter, although it may be a son, so the decisions you make in advance, mom and dad, to deal with the contingencies of aging may have a lot to do with the mental health of one or more of your children.

What to do with all your “stuff”, the assemblage of lifetime possessions that can’t go into the new house or the seniors’ residence? Walk around your house. If you were to downsize or move to a care facility, what would you do with everything in sight or out of sight? It’s not just stuff…it’s bank statements, investment statements, computer documents, passwords, how bills are paid, etc. Are wills, trusts, powers of attorney for assets and health care, advance directives, DD-214 form for veterans, insurance policies, etc. readily available to anyone who will intervene? Are the documents up to date? If you have life insurance in force, have the policies been reviewed based on their performance? Does the alpha child know where everything is, what do you want? If you don’t have adult children, who intervenes? Perhaps a meeting with your financial planning advisor is in order.

When you leave Hotel Earth, the only thing you take with you is your immortal soul. What happens to all your earthly treasures? What happens to your soul? This last one is the most important question. Eternity is really very long!

Lewis Walker, CFP®, is a life-centered financial planning strategist at Capital Insight Group; 770-441-3553; [email protected] Securities and advisory services provided by The Strategic Financial Alliance, Inc. (SFA). Lewis is a Registered Representative and Representative Investment Advisor of SFA, otherwise unaffiliated with Capital Insight Group. He is a Gallup Clifton Strengths Certified Coach and Certified Exit Planning Counselor.

Lewis Walker, CFP®, is a financial life planning strategist at Capital Insight Group; 770-441-3553;[email protected] Securities and advisory services provided by The Strategic Financial Alliance, Inc. (SFA). Lewis is a Registered Representative and Representative Investment Advisor of SFA, otherwise unaffiliated with Capital Insight Group. He is a Gallup Clifton Strengths Certified Coach and Certified Exit Planning Counselor.