My mother has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. I'm still in a bit of shock. It was just last year that my father died of pancreatic cancer. Isn't there a limit or time spacing thing about dealing with death? No? Well there should be. Anyway, understandably so, mom doesn't want to spend whatever time she has left working, so she wants to sell the house, move in with her sister, and enjoy her life. I totally agree and understand where she's coming from. Of course, I have a few concerns. At the risk of sounding like a morbid ass, they are the following:
- I'm concerned that whatever she'd make from the sale of the house (which would be minimal considering the current market and the fact she owes a considerable amount on it) would not be enough to cover whatever she'd like to do. It's kind of hard to say because we don't know her prognosis.
- I'm not all that convinced my mom will sit down and look at her finances and reasonably think about how she plans to fund all the things she wants to do. I'm not convinced it can happen. Some, but certainly not all.
She asked if I'd take over the mortgage. I flatly responded that I can't afford it. She seemed unhappy about that. Truth be told, I'll barely be able to afford rent for a lame studio in the city (I live in a HCOL area. Factor that with having to save a decent amount for retirement, and yeah...bolonga sandwiches for the next 30 years).
I think the most important thing we can do right now is figure her financial/legal situation and options.
- We need to set up powers of attorney for her health care and financial affairs as well as a will. I've reached out to a lawyer that helped us with my dad.
- While everything my dad needed was covered under Medicare, I'm concerned that it may be different for mom. It was 4 months from diagnosis to death for my dad. I'm hoping the time for my mother will be much longer. Also, her illness is different from my dad's. I'm wondering if there may be things with her treatment that may not be covered under medicare.
- I know she doesn't want to work, however it may be beneficial to go down to part-time work instead of full-time. It will be less trying for her physically and still keep some income.
- We'll need to sit down and discuss her financial life. If she has any debt, types of insurance, other possible sources of income, etc. We'll keep to keep track of everything submitted to Medicare and her supplemental insurance so we know what's covered and what isn't.
Then of course, there's the whole deal of where I'm going to go, where I can afford to live and still get to my mom, how long I'll have to live there, wondering if the BF will ever move here...I'm just kinda in "stop-the-damn-world-cuz-i-need-some-answers"mode.