I have to admit, I deserve to get beat up. I have brought this on myself. All of the warnings were there and I just ignored them. I knew a long time ago I needed to do something—or I would get beat up.
The beating has left me sore in my neck and my shoulders. My hands hurt. When I went to church Sunday morning, I had no idea that there were so many stairs, as every muscle in my legs hurt and my knees were screaming at me.
Yes, I got beat up.
I spent this last winter doing very little, other than an occasional workout. I knew that by June 20th, I needed to be ready—but I delayed and waited.
Finally, Saturday, April 25th, I got back on my bicycle to get ready for a bicycle trip beginning June 20th. It felt great to get out and ride. Though it was windy, I pushed on—riding just over 15 short miles.
That evening, in the middle of the night, I woke up hurting everywhere, convinced that someone had snuck into my room and beat me with a baseball bat. I looked over at my wife, Barbara, but she was asleep. I ruled her out.
Sometimes, I have families come into my office seeking help. One family recently had been to two of my workshops (as well as a workshop of an estate/trust planning attorney) and had even visited with my staff on the phone.
Now they were here, some three years later, both elderly, and wanting to preserve assets in light of a new illness one of them had.
I will be able to help them, but unfortunately, it will not work the same as if they had come to me before the illness—if they had come to me three years ago. Now our opportunities are more limited. The plan is more complicated, more costly and will have a less favorable result—but it is the best that we can do.
After a two and a half hour meeting, I am sure they felt beat up. In fact, I stopped the meeting so that we could get together again and finish the planning—at a time that they were not so beat up.
One of the most disappointing parts of my practice is when someone comes in to see me, I lay out a plan for them, and they decide not to do anything. I always wonder what I could have done differently. I always feel like I have let them down by not convincing them. I have to admit, it wakes me up at night.
I know that if I keep plugging away at riding my bicycle, the soreness will leave me, and then eventually riding will become enjoyable again. If I keep plugging away, I will be ready for my bicycle trip on June 20th. If I falter, the June 20th trip is going to be very, very difficult.
I know that the family that recently came to see me will one day enjoy peace of mind- they just need to let me help them “train” them—just as I am trying to train myself on my bicycle.
Please, please do not wait. If you are facing a chronic illness or want to get a plan in place as not to lose everything, DO SOMETHING NOW.
As with bike riding, the longer the wait, the harder it is going to be to get a plan in place—in fact, one day it may be too late.
Do not let that happen to you.
*previously published April 27th, 2015