Although I am not the biggest fan of the season of winter, one of the things I appreciate most about the season is the chance to rethink my life’s priorities, and reorganize and plan accordingly. I am not sure what is about winter—the stark landscape, the extra time inside due to the weather, or the holidays and New Year’s resolutions—but something about this time of year always lends to my reflecting on where I am, how I got here and where I want to go. And in making those plans, I always feel the blessings of being able to make estate plans with so many different types of people, which have enriched my knowledge and viewpoint about my own personal decisions in that area.
As I organize my plethora of items to donate, I think of so many of my clients who have chosen to prioritize experiences over items. As I put away all my holiday trinkets, I am reminded of a client of mine with whom I spent much time crafting a solution to find the just perfect recipient of her collection of Waterford crystal—items all her family members insisted they did not want. When we were done, she no longer felt invalidated by her family’s insistence that they did not want these treasured items, but instead she and I both were able to grow to appreciate that sometimes the best home for a much loved item is outside of your family.
As I revise my estate plan, (yes even planners have to go back and make changes!), I am reminded of all the lessons my clients have taught me that are making me think much longer and harder about disability planning, and all that it entails. For the vast majority of us, we will face an extended period of disability prior to death. And planning to make sure that during that disability our life and lifestyles continue in manner we prefer is of vital importance.
Finally, as I get excited about the coming of spring, which always reminds me of new beginnings, I am again reminded of where I get to go in this journey we call life is only limited by my dreams and my willingness to put action in support of those dreams. I hope you enjoy winter, in all its glory!