I try to be strong for my clients. This week, however, it was tough.
A couple came to see me after they learned that the wife had a rare disease. They had done some work with me, but only on the asset protection side. So, they needed to complete their wills and revocable trust.
When I came into the room, the husband’s eyes were watery. I tried to ignore it, but I didn’t ignore the reason they came in. I asked about the diagnosis. As they were talking she interrupted him a few times. In frustration, he looked at her and said “you’ve always interrupted me.” Then more tears welled up in his eyes.
The prognosis isn’t good. She’ll probably die soon. When reality hits like that, it’s easy to cherish even idiosyncratic annoyances (like interruptions) committed by those we love.
She smiled and apologized. There was a silent pause while they put their heads down and wiped their eyes. I handed them the box of tissue and explained that the best way I know to help folks experiencing a potential tragedy is to be strong and lead them through the planning process. The last thing we need are legal complications that get in the way of savoring life’s last moments.
I normally get depressed and sad when I’m faced with my own personal losses in the form of a death. I really hate feeling that way, so I get mad. Anger is an easier emotion for me to deal with than sadness. I admired this couple because they were genuine and let the appropriate emotions surface. They lived a full life together and expressed to me how lucky they were to have each other.
She started joking about him dating once she was gone.
He held her hand.
I was moved.
I hope to have relationships that go as deep as theirs.