One and a half billion dollars; that was the Powerball jackpot.
Currently I'm spending a three month hiatus from my job at our home in Florida. When the
Powerball lottery reached such an astronomical amount, I followed the crowd and did what I rarely do; bought five quick pick numbers. It's a fun pastime to ponder what I'd do if I win.
On Thursday morning I saw on Facebook one of the winning tickets was from Florida. My heart quickened. I thought, holy shit, my chances of becoming a billionaire just increased. I felt a nervous excitement and thought, "damn, where will I deposit the check if I've won?"
Dreaming is one thing, but dealing with the possibility of actually holding that check in my hand got my analytical mind a whirring, just as it does when contemplating a particularly challenging anesthetic case on a patient with serious co- morbidities.
No, I didn't check my ticket against the winning numbers immediately; I googled, "what to do with the money won in the lottery." The advice was mind boggling.
1. Sign your ticket immediately.
2. Don't deposit right away.
- [ ] a. And don't deposit in a bank
- [ ] b. FDIC doesn't insure such a large amount.
3. Contact an estate attorney, and a financial planner.
4. Stay quiet and leave town for awhile.
5. Set a budget; plan for taxes on investment earnings.
6. Contemplate charities
7. Get a therapist; to help handle emotional upheaval.
8. Deposit in a brokerage account.
9. Invest in a health savings account.
10. Write down a list of people you trust.
Make a copy of your ticket.
And the list of recommendations goes on.......
When my wife got up, we immediately co-signed our ticket, and then we checked the numbers.
We didn't win.
Unbelievably, I was overcome by a sense of relief -- "whew, now I can settle down and continue to enjoy my vacation.
I'm glad I played, and I'm glad I researched the steps to take if one wins. It's quite a learning experience.
My daughter-in-law, Kristy, messaged me, "please tell me it's you!"
"I am the winner.
But not the powerball winner. In researching what to do if your a winner, I realized it would destroy my comfortable life as I know it and make me a slave to money management. It would put, among others, my grandchildren in danger, and just providing physical security for them would change their lives forever.
I have a great life and a wonderful family I love!!
Thank God someone else won the Powerball."