“What are the latest Covid-19 statistics?,” I wondered as I did my daily scan of the CDC and the Florida Department of Health websites before bed.
I’ve stopped watching the news and try to limit myself to once daily checks online for the latest updates, particularly as it may relate to my clients, my business, and my family.
There is so much confusing, and sometimes conflicting, information out there and it seems to change daily.
Wear a cloth mask (here’s another You Tube video on how to make your own at home!) but don’t forget to wash them frequently in hot water.
Wear vinyl gloves when you go out but throw them away frequently (not on the ground, gross people!).
Stay at home unless you need to buy groceries, gas, or get your prescriptions filled.
If you do venture out, social distance yourself from others by at least six feet.
Don’t congregate with more than ten people at a time.
Close your business unless it’s an essential one. [Glad to know that liquor stores are an essential business. After all, wouldn’t this be an excellent opportunity to sober up? Not that it stopped ME from buying wine on sale this weekend of course!]
I’m confused by all of it. You might be too.
I do want to do my part to flatten the curve and not unknowingly infect my neighbor with what could be a potentially dangerous and even deadly virus to them.
But I’m also worried about our economy and the financial toll the loss of jobs is having on my neighbors. Food bank lines and unemployment rates are skyrocketing.
I’ve personally talked to folks that won’t leave their house convinced that the deadly virus looms everywhere beyond the cozy confines of their abode.
I’ve spoken to others who are convinced the government is trampling on our civil liberties by forcing businesses to shut down and how dare someone tell them that they can’t take a leisurely walk on the beach that they pay good taxes to maintain?
But I think the worst part about the current situation we find ourselves in is NOT KNOWING HOW LONG IT WILL LAST.
Someone, please just give me a date that I can expect my life to go back to normal.
Not only is that an impossible request but I suspect that life in many ways will never go back to “normal.” There will be a “new normal” when it’s all said and done.
Rumors have already started to circulate from college administrations that campuses will not reopen in the Fall and college classes will continue to be taught online through the rest of the year.
To me, the toughest part is the NOT KNOWING.
Give me the bad news, people. I can deal with that.
But tell me SOMETHING tangible and knowable about my family’s future so I can mentally prepare and begin to deal with it. Being stuck in limbo stinks.
I hear the same concerns from my clients when we are brainstorming the best way to craft their estate plans. They want to know the BEST WAY to plan. “What would YOU do in my situation?,” they ask me.
I tell them the same thing every time.
I don’t have a crystal ball. If I did, I’d be a very rich woman.
So I can’t tell my clients exactly what their future holds, like when their plan will be needed, how their kids will turn out, if their spouse or child will remarry some ne’re-do-well in the future, etc.
All we have to work with is the information as we know it today.
Tomorrow everything may change for my clients and we need to build their estate plan in a flexible enough way to pivot with the most foreseeable developments that could happen.
And I remind my clients that their plan should be reviewed and modified as their future circumstances and family and financial situation evolve over time.
I suppose I just need to take my own advice and get comfortable with the unknoweable future.
I should take the current health crisis day by day and try to make the best decisions for myself, my family, my clients, and my business daily, knowing that I may pivot tomorrow as more information becomes available.
At My Pink Lawyer®, we are continuing to serve our clients around the State of Florida using virtual consultations via telephone or secure web conferences.
We also recognize that all of the pre-planning in the world won’t do you any good if you are unable to legally sign your documents in the presence of the required witnesses and notary (digital execution of estate planning documents won’t become legal in Florida until at least this summer).
So to give you the peace of mind knowing that your estate plan is now legally in order, we also now offer periodic live signing appointments in our office for local clients taking extra safety precautions to keep our clients and staff safe.
We are living in unprecedented times no doubt.
My sincere hope is that if we all keep a clear head, do our part to keep ourselves and our neighbors safe, and are willing to at least temporarily sacrifice some of our lifestyle choices and civil liberties for the greater good, we will come out on the other side with stronger families and a stronger connection to one another.
Let us each do our part today for a safer tomorrow.
Kristen “Doing Her Part to Flatten the Curve” Marks