THE conversation has come up often since I first decided to write my Last Will and Testament.
Early this year it has come up more as my lugezi-gezi made me share my year’s plan around, and some have been taken aback at the entry regarding updating my Last Will and Testament.
At first, after getting the WTH’s out of the way I would explain my process and people rarely bought it, but agreed to write their own in a way that told me they needed the conversation to end quickly.
So it would.
And after many such endings I developed a different method that has worked well so far this year.
First, I stopped telling people that writing one’s Last Will and Testament was expected of anyone who had attended school for long enough to write full sentences in English.
So far, I have found that it is not yet realistic to hold the expectation for everybody to understand that acknowledging one’s mortality does not necessarily invite terminal proof.
So I dropped all indications of that in my approach.
Instead, I have started telling people to consider the Last Will and Testament as a challenge to focus them on achieving their annual objectives.
See, in your Last Will and Testament you are forced to consider everything that you own and can bequeath to your loved ones. From a strictly material point of view, therefore, you will have to list all the property and assets that you have against your name.
One friend, who will remain unnamed for now, squinted almost in pain when I said this.
“But…but…” he sputtered a little bit: “I have NOTHING!”
“There you go!” I said, triumphantly, “THAT’S why you have to check that document every single year.”
I explained that point a little further:
Starting the year out by realising that at your ripe old adult age you have accumulated less than you would want to leave behind for your children could make you spend less on pork and whisky and more on chunks of soil identified by land titles.
Computing your official net worth should you suddenly stop being productive, and working out how long your dependants would survive in material comfort thereafter could lower the priority you accord to leisurely frolics over weekends.
Away from the worldly possessions themselves, you will find it interesting to evaluate which of your friends and relatives you actually trust enough to raise your children and keep your home running in comfort without breaking sensitive barriers.
Should your analysis be difficult, you have a whole year ahead to culture, cultivate and create meaningful relationships that will not fade into dust on your departure.
Your Last Will and Testament, ladies and gentlemen, is a serious document.
In fact, just contemplating it and knowing that you haven’t yet written one should also guide some of your actions. If you haven’t written one, for instance, you would be even more stupid than normal to take a boda-boda without a helmet.
The thought of you dying without having deposited a Will with your trusted compadres should horrify you – what will they say at your funeral? Do you want your children to forever think you were so intellectually challenged as to neglect leaving behind a plan for them?
There are more worries than can fit into one article in one day. To short-cut the rest of it just write your Last Will and Testament as an essential part of your 2019 life plan.
When it kicks into effect you won’t be alive to regret doing so, but your loved ones will be alive to not regret your having failed to write one.