Letters To Myself

Letters To Myself

My greatest fear is losing myself…It’s not just Alzheimer’s or dementia, but that I’ll forget the lessons I’ve painstakingly learned about facing tough challenges head on or those of being responsible and not causing others unnecessary pain. I don’t want to be that old person who shouldn’t be driving and hits a child. I don’t want to be the one who is too proud to ask for help from family, so I get swindled by asking the first person who is nice to me to pay my bills and I just sign checks. I don’t want to be the one that family gets calls about in the middle of the night because I was too stubborn to move from my home into a safer environment. I want to anticipate and face the challenges of aging head on! I’ve already taken some steps. We moved into a single story home with a garden level basement that could be converted to a caretaker apartment. I have my legal documents in order and everything ready for my proxies.
The problem in all of the scenarios above is that legal documents don’t address these, and the aging person doesn’t perceive the problem to be as severe as outsiders looking in. I am sure I will be the same way.  I’ve been strong, rational, and a good driver, so why would I start to think I’m not? I could easily rationalize by saying that “it was just once that I sideswiped the car in the parking lot, so now I park far away.  What could that inability to perceive distances between cars have to do with my driving abilities?”
Here’s my answer to this problem of self-deception. I have drafted letters to myself and they essentially say:
Dear Carol,
You’re getting this letter because you don’t want to be that person who should have stopped driving because you killed a child.  Somebody who loves you has reason to believe that you are not a safe driver any more.  It’s time to:
___ Stop driving at night.
___ Stop driving entirely and use Uber, a self-driving car or some other option.
___ Get tested and maybe take a driving refresher class, if you pass the test.
Remember, you’re the one who wrote this letter and asked for people to help you recognize the truth. You made this pact with yourself and agreed to talk with others, get tested or follow the checked box.
I’m proud of me for facing this challenge.
-Carol (your younger self)
I have letters for driving, medical decisions, financial management and moving. They are written and signed by me and stored in the cloud where any of my family and friends can have them delivered to me via email, snail mail or in person. I review them once a year, because I want them branded into my brain. I can’t stop the aging process and my family longevity indicates I’ll face these issues. I can, however, face them as me…responsible, kind and with humor, hopefully!

Please feel free to print these off from our online classroom and share. Encourage the conversations between generations and friends. By the way, the first year I introduced them, several people printed them ALL off and sent them to me. I guess the humor thing is part of the family.

Want to discuss these issues or any other issues with your coach? Attend our monthly Coaching Hours on August 17th from 5 p.m.- 6:30 p.m. MT / 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. ET. The video link is available in your member calendar.

What’s next?  If you’re a club member, ask your coach for access to our Fiscal Fitness Playbook, so you can begin to plan ahead select who will serve as your proxy in different scenarios and begin creating your letters! If you’re not a club member, but are interested in learning more about our services, follow this link to schedule your complimentary call today and find out if we are a good fit!

Fiscally yours,
Carol Craigie

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