I lost my only child in an ATV accident over Christmas break 2013. Dalton was only 15 years old, and our entire world revolved around him. The grief that goes along with losing a child is unimaginable and beyond explanation. It's baffling what emotions can do to your brain and how they affect your every move and decision, if you can even make decisions. I have a hard time even figuring out how to move one foot in front of the other these days. That said, I am so very thankful for my brain working in 2012 when I finally purchased life insurance for my son and each of my sister's children.
I never intended to actually use the life insurance for its purpose, as the inexpensive policies I purchased carried a guarantee that would help each of the kids later in life, where they could raise the death benefit up to $450k, without ever having to re-qualify for the insurance. To me, that was a safety worth paying for, just in case any of them ended up with a debilitating disease that would somehow not allow them to qualify for life insurance later in life.
Dalton's accident happened in California, so we had to cover all of the standard expenses there, as well as covering them again, here in Colorado. Then, there was the added cost of transporting him home in the proper container at the proper temperature, paying the funeral home in California to work with the funeral home here, then paying for the casket here for the viewing (because the box we brought him home in was not for viewing). Then we had the blessing, celebration of life, programs, pictures, urns, cremation, food and drinks to feed everyone while they were here, travel expenses, toiletries and paper products (you have no idea how many people travel through your home during this time), etc. With all the expenses, this could have bankrupted us. Just a few months after the accident, we had incurred over $21,000, not including any of the time we spent away from work, or medical expenses incurred at the accident scene.
Had I not spent the $60/year for the life insurance policy I bought for Dalton, we never would have been able to give him the celebration his short, beautiful life deserved, nor could we have made our house payment, or paid any other bills for several months following the accident. More importantly, though, we would not have had the brainpower to figure out how to make it all work. That, in itself, proves to me that life insurance is something which must be budgeted for every single month.
So, please, if you have children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, or friends with children, who do not have life insurance, there are so many other benefits more than just a death benefit. Please, look into it for a birthday or Christmas gift or just because. It's worth it just for the guarantee that they'll be covered when they grow up and have babies of their own.
My husband and I never dreamed this could happen to our son, but it did. Please think about it, and then DO something about it. Waiting until tomorrow could be too late.
Submitted by Roni Wing Lambrecht,
Speaker and Author of three books available at www.ParentingAtYourBestWithoutRegrets.com:
Parenting at Your Best; Powerful Reflections and Straightforward Tips for Becoming a Mindful Parent
A Parent's Guide for Journaling to Their Child; Simple Strategies for Writing Heartfelt Love Letters to Your Child
A Parent's Journal to Their Child; With Simple Strategies for Writing Heartfelt Love Letters to Your Child