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Old 01-11-2004, 07:21 AM   #1
 
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-11-2004, 07:27 AM   #2
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

I don't think I would change my lifestyle, but if I were diagnosed with some strange incurable disease, then I would want to spend a good part of the five years researching the disease in the hope of finding a cure.

And if the doctors turned out to be wrong, I'd still have a couple of PhD's in the end
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-11-2004, 07:46 AM   #3
 
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

Wabmester,

You answered another question. The question was How would live your life if you knew that you only had 5 years to live. No changes in Health, wealth or any other circumstance than you have now. And no chance at all of living more than 5 years.

A valid answer is that you might decide that you liked to find cures for diseases. If so, then the next question might be why am I not doing that now?

It is basically a life decision question, meant to challenge and/or validate your current lifestyle.
Truly, most people given this circumstance, would do a few things differently. Then they can ask themselves, if these things are valid to do differently, not knowing whether or not you have 5 years to live are they still valid actions.
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-11-2004, 08:10 AM   #4
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

I have a retired engineer buddy who is in his third or fourth year(depending on which of his doctors he quotes). He's doing pretty much what I would have to do.

With a hardcore 'financially challanged' other half - put financial affairs so no decsions 'can or need to be made' and bring the house up snuff - physically and fiancially. Then putz in the market with hobby money, do a little fishing and enjoy life.

One problem will be visiting relatives who want to come and visit 'one last time'

My plan would follow the same general course - altered slightly for for my specific situation. As for relatives - I may be harsher as time will be my most precious asset - especially 'doing nothing special - just puttering'.
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-11-2004, 11:01 AM   #5
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

One of the reasons I want to retire early is to have a few years to be totally free, and that includes freedom from having the end hanging over me like a guillotine. At some point it's probably natural to see the end coming, but I want to keep my head in the sand a few more years. I was at a family reunion last year and a cousin from the Korean war generation referred to himself and my Dad as the "check-out" generation. That made an impression. I thought, "Wow, that must be depressing to think of yourself in those terms." I still think like a kid - death is something that happens to other people, and I like it that way.

So to answer your question, Cut-throat, I'd probably be mad as hell and waste a year dealing with the shock and anger. Then I'd be depressed for four years, and then I'd die. Not a pretty picture, but knowing myself, it's the most honest answer. It's my worst nightmare, even worse than running out of money.
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-14-2004, 08:33 PM   #6
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

Hmmm, 5 years to live, eh? Same thing as the Terhorst two year test, just add 3 more years..

In my case I would do all the things that I am working for early retirement for, so I have the time to do them !

In the working world, it's tough to get months off at a time, as everyone knows, and many things I'd like to do require this kind of time. I would take a motorcycle trip across and around the country (USA) and thru Canada, up to Alaska, etc. That could take about a year or so. After that, I think I would pick 4 countries, live in each one for a year, and try to learn as much about the culture as I could, see as much as the country had to offer, and try to immerse myself in my new surroundings/culture. At the end of the year, I'd move on, unless I was REALLY enjoying where I was ! Hey, I take things as they come now, and that certainly wouldn't change !

I like this exercise, I think it's important to think of this kinda stuff, as the answer to this question is the kinda stuff we should be striving to do with our lives as soon as possilbe. I'm young now (33) but I remember when I was 21 and thought 33 meant having one foot in the grave. To quote "The Shawshank Redemption", "Get busy living, or get busy dying !"

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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-15-2004, 04:51 AM   #7
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

I love foreign countries - that's why we've spent 25+ yrs in LA as 'dam yankee's' - I can even 'spoke rite', 'make groceries', 'pass a good time', say 'how's your mamma and dem' - BUT still can't pronounce New Orleans properly - maybe someday.
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-15-2004, 08:35 AM   #8
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

Ted,

I'd tell my wife I love her every hour and call my parents and brother once a day and tell them I love them. I'd pay 5 years worth of life insurance premiums, quit my job, put the house up for sale, and discard all calendars. What ever is left in the house come spring time gets sold with it. I'd give the realtor POA and the deposit account number and then I'd drop the boat in the water, load the family, start sailing, and forget that I have only so much time left. I'd have plenty of money for this and wouldn't think about money at all. My family could then use the life insurance money to keep sailing or to "start over".

I'm not doing it now because I hope to hang around another 60 years and to spend 10 of those sailing around... Any more questions? ;')

Cheers,

Chris
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-15-2004, 01:12 PM   #9
 
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

If I had 5 years to live, I would not change a thing.
We both assume we have less than that now, and
live accordingly.

John Galt
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-24-2004, 06:52 AM   #10
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

This question is very real for me. My beloved wife has been fighting cancer since 1996. She has had 3 recurrances and is currently undergoing radiation therapy once again.
Every day I do tell her how much I love her. We traveled enough for us to realize that a home on our small ranch away from the city where we can sit on our porch watching livestock and wildlife or just the clouds passing overhead is great fun.
On any rainy day and each evening for fun, we gather our black labrador 'Smudge' and our orange kitty 'Billy' with us on our big bed and curl up all together.
Each precious day together is wonderful ... Life couldn't be any better!
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-25-2004, 07:00 AM   #11
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

With 5 years, I'd start out with an adventure, like bicycling from the top of the Rockies in Washington State, down to the Mississippi. Or maybe building a small boat and taking it all the way down the Missouri River to New Orleans.

Then I'd take it easy and spend a summer on a sailboat in some remote anchorage in the Great Lakes haulin out some fish and cookin em up with spuds and coffee.

By that time I'd probably be missing our home sweet home, so I would go home and spend some time tending the woodstove and reading books from the library. Learn to cook some new recipes, maybe try inventing some interesting flying and floating machines.

As my allotted time came near, I think I would get my boat ready and try crossing the Atlantic. If I made it and still had time, I 'd try for the Pacific.

Statistically speaking, I've got a short 40 years to live. Maybe my approach with 40 should not be that much different than with 5 years to go.

Those are some things I would do if the decisions were entirely my own and I was unattached in a relationship. The reality is that I would want to do things with my wife and that would require some compromise. I would be willing to compromise because lifes a lot more fun with her. But I would start the discussion by trying to convince her to go on some adventures with me.
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-25-2004, 09:26 AM   #12
 
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

I have a thought for Bob_Smith and his shock/outrage/depression comment. This
(the 5 years to live deal) could actually be a blessing if you
were old enough and looked at it in the proper
perspective. For example (I'm not sure about 5 years),
if I could be guaranteed, oh say 10 years of good health
before my passing at age 70, I believe I would take that deal. I have led a pretty interesting life and could pack a lot into 3650 days (that's 10 years for you folks in Rio Linda). And, it would make planning and
prioritizing oh so easy. Anyone else want to weigh in?

John Galt
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-25-2004, 12:24 PM   #13
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

Hi John,

You have a point. It's just that the timing would be very bad for me now. I've got 11 months left at work, and then I hope to jump. If I get a few years of ER, I'll feel differently, I hope. I'm only 51, and I can see the end of the tunnel. To have that snatched away would be tough. I hope that when the time nears I'll be able to look at it as you do. Ol_Rancher's comments were also very moving. I admire you both. Maybe I'll get there someday. I hope so.
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do
Old 01-25-2004, 01:57 PM   #14
 
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Re: If you had 5 years to Live - What would you do

I think you need to look at my philosophical question
as you would an investment, i.e. how much risk
(in this case lifespan) would you trade for
certainty? In my case, I would lean toward
the sure thing as I do when investing.
You also have to consider how many people live
into very old age but have little quality of life.

John Galt
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