The finish line is an interesting thing. People usually think of it as something steady and unmoving, like in a race—but it isn’t always.
For example, most people join the military with some kind of finish line in mind: 4 years of service, 6 years, 10 years, 20+ years. But it doesn’t always go as planned.
I thought I’d be in for 4 years, get the education benefits, and get out. Then 9/11 happened… and I decided to stay a little longer. Then I re-enlisted to get base of preference coming back from overseas. Next thing I knew, I was only 10 years away from the 20-year mark, and I thought—well, may as well finish out the 20 years. Even when I did leave, it was difficult to walk away. The military had a draw-down in 2014 and my dear husband and I were eligible to end our careers early - so we took that leap of faith and landed here. Had we stayed, we would be well over 20 years by now and probably had retired by now, just the same.
That said, 20 years goes by much faster than people think. With our kids, we can’t wait until they sleep through the night, until they’re walking, until they’re talking, until we can have a date night again. Now, I’m suddenly looking at my oldest, who’s almost 17, and thinking, I need more time. I’m watching her grow up now, and learn to advocate for herself. 20 years goes by fast.
The interesting thing is that once someone has served in the military, whether 4 years or 10 or 20 or more, that service mentality is never truly finished. Many who leave the military go into law enforcement, teaching, or some other kind of public service. The military service mindset does not have a set finish line.
The same is true of estate planning. This type of practice is not like a crockpot. We cannot simply set it and forget it. It is not a one-and-done. Anytime something happens in a client’s life—a birth, a death, a major event—we need to relook their estate plan. In fact, I suggest clients reevaluate their estate plans at least every three years, and that they make it part of their routines just like they do for their annual physicals, routine dental exams, etc.
I look at estate planning like a marathon, not a sprint. Estate planning is not a job I ever truly finish. My goal is to work with you, through all your life’s changes, and see you safely to the grave.
There is no finish line to the service mentality—and no finish line for ensuring my estate planning clients have all their needs covered and the most up-to-date plan for their estates and life circumstances. Whether you’re a potential client or a current one, you can rest assured that whatever your needs, whatever changes life throws you, I’m here for the long-haul. I’m here to help.
But while we're talking about finish lines and what's coming next, stay tuned for some exciting changes coming to our firm in the new year! You won't want to miss it!