This is a phrase I heard for the first time last night, and it really made me think. I heard this while watching the show Grey’s Anatomy with my wife – One of the actors in the show had a near death experience and was telling a fellow co-worker about the experience. As part of the story he said “until you have your life flash before your eyes you don’t realize how special life truly is. The minute you see all the things you have, you realize all you have to lose.”
Now as a husband and as a father I sat there and I thought about this from a few different angles. First I thought about my amazing wife, and how much she does for our family, and how much she means to us. Second I thought about my kids and how I get up each day with the sole purpose of doing everything I can to provide the best life possible for them. Then I thought about my self, and what I mean to my family – not in a I rule the world way, but truly what do I mean to my family.
I started with the obvious things – I provide support and love, I give them a roof over their head, and food on their table. I do my best to be a mentor, a coach, a role model and all things positive in their life. I try to instill in them the principals of going to work, and working hard, the drive and motivation to never give up on their dreams but most important I give them a sense of security. When something goes wrong (not that Mom wont be) Dad will be there, when they need a shoulder to lean on or to cry on Dad will be there. We as individuals mean so much to our families we tend to forget or not think about how much they would truly miss out on if we were not around. How much they would truly miss us, if we died unexpectedly.
Its tragic yet it happens all the time – young mothers and fathers pass away leaving behind a young widowed spouse and children with only one parent to turn to. Every time I see or hear of a young parent passing my first instinct is to ask or think “Did they have life insurance.?” I ask this for a number of a reasons. but let me paint you a picture. Here you are a married, 35 year old male or female living the “dream,” perfect job, a spouse you adore and 3 children you would do anything for (ages 10, 7 & 4 let’s say). You drop them off at school and head to the office when BOOM! you are struck by another car – you die instantly on the spot. Your spouse gets the call and their world is instantly wrecked, your kids find out and they are in shock. A few days pass and your family has your funeral then its back to reality, well the new reality.
If your’re like me and have prepared for your family’s future here is what that new reality looks like – My spouse gets a large life insurance check and with that she can pay for the funeral and do the type of service her and my children need. She can pay off the house so now she can be a mother to our children without fear of losing the house. She can pay off her car so she has no worry about transportation. My kids will have a nest egg set aside to help pay for college as I do not want my untimely death to impact their future. My wife will have a nest egg to live off of so she can be a mother to our children, and will not have to worry about going back to work right away. She can take all the time she needs to grieve the loss, and she can take time to be there for our kids.
It pains me inside when I see a young parent pass away and they have no life insurance. If you’re that person, and you have no life insurance and you pass away, one day your spouse will see you again – what do you think they will tell you? What do you think that story will look like? What do you think your kids will remember? Will they remember all the good times, Or will they remember the time you died and left them with nothing?
In closing, what does your family stand to lose if they lose you?