You hold your cold clammy hands together and cast your eyes unseeingly around the room. The supposedly warm yellowish lights fail to improve the ambience. Sharp wafts of disinfectant serve as another reminder of the situation you are in.
The door swings open with nary a sound but the change in light prompts you to turn your head. The bespectacled doctor greets you with too much familiarity and confirms your identity. A faint scent of alcohol rub still lingers in his hands as he pores through the clipboard that is the summary of your life.
Quick and polished, medical terms are rattled off, not that you care to understand.
But each one seems to be an inevitable nail to be used later, for what you dread to be a coffin.
He stops abruptly and looks into your eyes.
“Sorry, but we cannot do anything more for you.”
The wave comes crashing down on you, and your brave front cracks just a little more.
Your voice is even, but your racing heart betrays the true anxiety within.
“Doctor, how long do I have?”
“Five” is his solemn rejoinder.
“Five what? Months?”
“Four, three, two…”
Joke aside, the realisation that your life is going to end so soon is a thought-invoking exercise.
It tells a lot about you.
What do you value?
Who do you cherish?
When you think deep and hard about the question, it will hit you hard.
A lot of things really do not matter. While a precious few really do.
What are the things you might do if given that you have a 24-hour expiry date?
Let us examine them.
Spend your Wealth?
Branded accessories, high-performance cars, designer labels.
These may be some consumer goods that you love.
Since it shall be your final chance to indulge in them, it is understandable if you want to do so.
No judgement here, but it is not be something that I would do on the final day of my life.
It could be the conspicuous lack of my own wealth that prevents me from doing so, but anecdotal evidence confirms this decision.
Relive your accomplishments?
You can retrieve and dust off the Employee of the Year plaque from the bomb shelter.
Or the winning medals from your track days.
And even replay the Thank You speech on TV.
It is a nice and warm feeling.
We love to refresh our memories from our glory days.
I may even have a few myself.
At the end of the day, this will take an hour. Two hours, tops.
Even for a high flyer, it must be boring to recount every single one of your achievements.
Spend a little bit of time and move on, big boy.
Sort out your Legacy?
This is not the end of the world scenario where everybody dies.
People still live, after you have passed on.
Thus, it may dawn upon you that you got to have your legacy in order.
If you want to be remembered fondly (or otherwise), there is nothing much you can do about it.
You will be reminisced based on your whole lifetime of work, not how you behave on the final day.
But you can still make sure your monetary legacy goes to the right people.
Make a will.
Entrust someone to take care of the young ones.
Go to your insurance company and make your nomination.
Getting the inheritance in order is what I will do.
But would that be the best use of your last day on Earth?
Wouldn’t it be more prudent to handle this way beforehand?
Spend time with your loved ones?
You do not want to spend your last day in office, slaving away for a tyranny boss.
Or polishing your car since you cannot bring it along to the afterlife.
Telling your parents how much you appreciate them for all the sacrifices they have made for you.
Holding the hands of your partner and telling them how much you love them.
And hugging your cute little ones really hard.
Perhaps even have a cold one with your mates, for old times’ sake.
I can’t speak for you, only myself.
But this activity will make up the bulk of my final hours on Earth.
And it still feels like it is not sufficient.
When it comes right down to it, Life is all about people.
It isn’t about money.
Not about accomplishments.
Definitely not about work.
It is about sharing precious moments with the people you love.
Forming priceless, unbreakable bonds with them.
Your loved ones are those that really matter in the end.
And you want to protect them.
Even when it is not physically possible.
Preparing for The Day After Tomorrow
This is a hypothetical question.
At the same time, it is not.
We cannot predict when we will go.
Life is fragile and unpredictable.
Hence, it is a question that we should be asking ourselves on a daily basis.
While we are around, we can take care of our family.
How about when you are not?
The answer is insurance.
Insurance helps to maintain your presence beyond just memories.
It helps maintain your family’s way of life by paying for the house.
Insurance makes sure that your offsprings can still afford their education without paying any more premiums by way of some nifty rider benefits.
And that Home for the Handicapped that you are so passionate about?
You can arrange for some of your insurance proceeds as a charitable donation.
Money that you always wanted to give but have never been able to afford.
Leaving a legacy for those who I care about and spending time with them.
That is pretty much what I shall be doing on my last day.
There is no right or wrong answer on what you should do if tomorrow is your last day.
While it is a personal opinion, I believe most will agree that people and not things that matter.
And insurance helps those people you cherish so much to live their normal lives, post-you.
Have you thought about what would you do if you have 24 hours left to live?
Share with us what matters to you the most in the comments!
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