There is a looming "death wave" of "Baby Boomers" here in the US, and we seem fairly ambivalent about it. Death, dying, and any of the grief and challenges which follow are uncomfortable, but I implore you to make sure you get through them. Here's why:

Early in the morning of December 2, 2019, my father passed away. My mom, sister, and I were beside him. We were all at my childhood home in South Florida.

Through mid October, everything seemed normal and on track. My parents had plans to attend Tortuga music festival and make a family visit to my father's homeland of Colombia in South America. As the month progressed, my father started exhibiting unusual behavior. He would sleep at his desk at work, skip meals, and sleep as soon as he got home. His speech was nonsensical and slurred.

An emergency room visit later we learned he had elevated calcium levels. A week later we had referrals to oncologists. On 11 November we learned he was terminal.

Then, he was gone.

The truth is, we lost him pretty much in mid October. Talking was difficult, if not impossible most of the time. He slept 23 hours a day by then. And the reason why it's important to have all your personal affairs and final wishes in order is precisely for this situation. He wasn't dead, but he wasn't really alive, either. We knew he was going to pass away, but we only had vague ideas on what he wanted for his final arrangements. My mom had urged him to read and sign his will, living will, and other documents, but he procrastinated.

We were then left to figure it all out, while caring for him in his final days and in the aftermath of his passing. We're fortunate that we're a loving and caring family without any dramas surrounding whatever assets he had.

So here it is: as uncomfortable as it may be to think about your own death, or the death of your significant other, imagine how much more uncomfortable or unbearable it could be dealing with these things after they pass away.

Things you need to arrange:

  • Living Will and DNR
  • Durable Power of Attorney
  • Last Will
  • Funeral arrangements or final wishes

Please. Do this for you. Your father and mother. Your spouse.

Alvaro Diego Gomez,  8 May 1952 Seville, Colombia - 2 December 2019 Pembroke Pines, Florida, US.