We assume the really serious changes in our lives happen slowly. 
But it’s not true. The big stuff happens in an instant. 
— Meredith, Grey’s Anatomy (1/14/2010)

I dreamed last night that my little Mini Cooper had an engine fire and was pretty much toast — burnt toast. A nice policeman offered to call someone to come pick me up and take me home. Now here’s the nightmare part of it, I couldn’t think of anyone for him to call!

I woke up, with the wind howling, and the house creaking and thought, “Oh, my God! Who do I call if my car breaks down?”

And not just that!

Who do I write down as my emergency contact on all those stupid forms that call for such stupid things?

What if I need surgery, even simple out patient stuff, where they say I need to have someone drive me home? Who’s going to drive me home?

What if I need a hip replacement? Who’s going to help take care of me?

What if I’m unconscious? Who will know anything about my medical history or insurance information?

What if I get the flu and can’t get out of bed to feed the horses or let Java outside?

Who do I put down on my living will? I’m not so much worried that someone might pull the plug prematurely. I’m more worried that they will keep me going in a vegetative state indefinitely. Maybe I can leave the X down on that form…

I’m trying to make a joke out of this but it really is no laughing matter!

Maybe I can make up people and hope they never need to actually be called.

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  1. I hear you. I wonder that too, not being married. I worry that someday, when I’m an old lady, I will not have children to care for me, or a husband. Then all my cousin’s kids will have to care for me. Good thing I’m charming them up now, LOL!
    I know you are joking, but also serious. I have these thoughts. Thanks for making me feel normal! 🙂

  2. What if…..woulda, coulda, shoulda.
    All you can do is try to cover all your bases as well as you can. You could create a letter with all of that information you talked about, have it coated in that plastic stuff (what’s that called?) and keep it in your purse or on your body if you’re riding or not carrying your purse.

    I think you mentioned that you are active in a church, right? If you ever did need a hip replacement (why hip? why not knee? lol!) there are many folks that attend church that always seem to be willing and wanting to offer their help or assistance.
    After I had my ACL knee surgery, folks from our church brought over meals and helped do our laundry and cleaned my house a few times.

    As for leaving an emergency contact, why not leave the name and phone of your pastor or church?
    When my husband went through brain surgery, our pastor was at the hospital with me and stayed until the surgery was over.
    And if the pastor isn’t able to be there, churches always have deacons or church members who are delegated to visit hospitals and those going through surgery.



  3. Maery Rose…I could not say it better than Lisa. She covered everything. Don’t forget your son. He should be on the top of your calling list. There are millions of single people out there who must be thinking about the same thing. It is a serious topic, but not hopeless.

    Long live the mini cooper!

  4. It’s good to see your making light of some serious questions. I agree with LOR, the church has a vast amount of resources and caring people when it comes to these woulda, coulda, and shoulda things.

    Have a fantastic day and may you and the mini cooper be blessed! :o)

  5. I gave up a couple seasons ago on Grey’s Anatomy, but this post reminds me of that episode, where Meredith says … you’re my person (in exactly this context).

    I’m thankful to have my boy, but I face the same dilemma when it’s time to list a not-us emergency contact for the dogs.

    P.S. I hope your Mini remains in working order a long time.

  6. Pony Girl – Even if there are logical answers to those questions and fortunately, few people are completely alone, it is still scary. And now I’m thanking you for letting me know that I’m not alone with my thoughts.

    Lisa, Lori, and Nezzy – Logically, I know there are people I can put down as emergency contacts or call on for help. But asking for help is a really hard thing for me to do. And my insurance card ALWAYS goes in my saddle bag, along with my license. I suppose that doesn’t do much good if Luke runs away and leaves me…

    Dusty Roads – Thanks. I appreciate knowing that.

    Roxanne – I remember that episode. It is such a good thing to have a person.

  7. I worry about this stuff too…my parents will die, I’m not married I don’t have kids…but if I keep worrying, I can’t enjoy the people I have in my life in the now…worry and fear spiraling and spiraling until I’m one big panic monkey with a huge headache and all kinds of other body aches…I might just call you : ) or forget that colonoscopy all together…screw ’em!

  8. Lynn – I don’t worry that much, it just ticks me off to even have to consider these things. Which is why I know I’ll refuse to cooperate with any forms trying to pin me into a box of marital status and emergency contacts. I’m thinking of putting down Santa Claus as my spouse and Rudolph as my emergency contact. But boy, am I glad I already had my colonoscopy and don’t have to do it again until I’m 70 or something. But I’ll be totally there for you whenever you need me!

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