Wednesday 9 April 2014

A Bit of a Stopper

So, I recently wrote my will, which is perhaps an odd thing to do at 33. Until now, I never needed one, as I never had anything to leave. Then someone pointed out to me that if I met an untimely end, the mortgage insurance would cover paying off my mortgage, and I would have a certain amount to leave behind. I like things to be neat and tidy, so I found a lawyer through Amnesty International's "Make a Will Week". This happens in March each year. Amnesty arrange for a free will-writing service, in the hope that people who use it might be inspired to leave a small legacy behind (which I have).

My will is pretty simple, mostly along the lines of "leave money to godchildren, jewellery to best friends, dive gear to dive shop, some gifts to charity, and my family and brother get the rest". The actual writing involves a certain amount of depressing speculation, it being a lawyer's job to point out things like "If your parents die, do you want your brother to get the lot? What about if he dies before you?". It is best not to flippantly reply "By the point this becomes an issue, I won't care, I'll be dead".

I don't always see death the way other people do. Having Asperger's syndrome, albeit very mild, means there's a lot of social detail you tend to miss. I've been called a Vulcan in the past for holding views such as my failure to understand why people eat cake and then complain it's making them fat. Either eat the cake and enjoy it, or don't eat the cake and save the calories, but eating the cake and then complaining about it seems to me to be pointless. For me, the inevitability of death is something I view much in the category of paying tax and getting rained on in autumn; it just happens. It just is. Why not talk about it, when it will happen to everyone? I don't get the urge to avoid talking about death, but then I also don't get why people don't provide for their old age. You know you'll get old, you've seen other people age and need extra support, so why don't you prepare for when it will happen to you? I plain don't get people, sometimes.

Nevertheless, it was quite a stopper to be holding in my hands the draft will. Staring at a piece of paper heading "The Last Will Of..." with your name below it is hard to process. This is a document whose sole purpose to exist is to deal with the fact that, one day, I won't. There will be no more me. That's how things are, but actually seeing concrete proof of it... Still, I'm glad I have the will. It does give you peace of mind, in the end.

I think I'll go and eat some cake now. Without complaining about it.

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