My heart hit the pit of my stomach when I both felt the thud and heard the scraping of my hard plastic instrument case, containing my brand new gleaming silver trumpet, against the tires of our car. We had just picked up the new trumpet the day before–a reward from my parents for sticking with band and music lessons for three years. Mom and I were waiting at the end of our long lane for the school bus, and she had set the trumpet case out on the snowy gravel along with my duffel bag to facilitate my speedy transfer from the car onto the bus. For some reason, she decided to move the car, forgetting where she had placed the trumpet case. Crunch! When we realized mom ran over my trumpet, we frantically ran to and opened the case, afraid we would find a mangled hunk of metal inside.
Instead, the trumpet miraculously remained intact, unscathed, and shining brightly in the winter sun with no visible signs of the trauma it had just suffered. My instrument case suffered a different fate—the plastic was scratched, dulled, and dented, with one broken hinge, no longer usable. As we both breathed a huge sigh of relief, my mom exclaimed how the ruined case had done its job, protecting the trumpet from damage by accidents and rough handling; now she needed to further protect it from other mishaps by calling our insurance agent to schedule the trumpet on our home owners policy.
I didn’t quite know what she was talking about then, and as the bus pulled up I didn’t have time for an explanation. I only cared that my treasured trumpet was safe and secure. But, a few years later, when I proudly received my driver’s license, my parents sat down with me and explained the finer points of insurance and how it provided protection and security for our family in many different ways. Not wanting to be responsible for placing my family in economic peril if I had a car wreck, I keenly listened.
My parents have about every kind of insurance available on the market: health insurance to pay for medical care; disability insurance to provide income if for some reason they can no longer work; long term care insurance to pay for nursing homes in case they can’t take care of themselves at home; auto insurance to protect their investments in our cars, and to pay for medical expenses and damages for injuries resulting from automobile crashes; home owners and flood insurance to protect our house and its contents; umbrella insurance in case the coverages under the car and home owners insurance aren’t enough to cover a catastrophic event; and finally life insurance, to pay for funeral expenses, replace an income, and provide for my education. My parents explained that insurance provides protection against events beyond their control, and provides security to make sure our family always has a home and the means to take care of ourselves. Insurance was like my trumpet case, it provided protection to secure our future well-being.
Like insurance, education is another tool to use for obtaining a secure financial future. It is well known that on average, workers with a bachelor’s degree or higher earn more money and experience far greater job security than those without, and this trend is expected to continue. Employers are reluctant to let college graduates go because they are skilled workers and proven assets. Earning a college degree demonstrates a willingness to work independently and accomplish long term goals—and employers do not want to lose workers with those attributes. Secure employment provides the means to buy a home, cars, and to afford a comfortable retirement. I plan to work hard to earn bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees in history so I can have a secure, happy, and comfortable future. With a college degree, my dreams of a bright future are more likely to become a reality.
Once I achieve my dreams, I want to protect those things I have worked hard to obtain. Insurance is important to me because it will protect those assets that provide the secure future I will earn with my college degrees. The writer Harry Browne said: “When you know that you’re capable of dealing with whatever comes, you have the only security the world has to offer”. Insurance provides the means to help me deal with whatever comes my way like the chaotic aftermath of a natural disaster, the tragic loss or disability of a loved one, and even freak accidents–such as my mother running over my trumpet. Like my trumpet case, insurance will provide the protection to keep the things I treasure safe and secure.
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