Here’s a conversation that I thought I would never have, but it is a real conversation. It is true conversation. Recently I just needed to get out of the house. I just needed to feel a sense of freedom. With the lockdown that comes with Covid-19, many of us are not going to the office. Many of us are staying home. Many of us are working in place, perhaps in the kitchen, perhaps in a guest room, but we haven’t had a chance to get out and about and spend time with our friends, with our family, and I had one of those evenings that I just needed to get into my car, throw some tunes into the dashboard that I would enjoy, open up the sunroof, open up the windows, and just watch the world go by. Do you know what I’m talking about? Just being free for an hour or two. As I was drifted through the roads back and forth through the countryside, it reminded me of my youth. It reminded me of my youth because I grew up in a small farming community of less than 4,000 people. During the summer months, it wasn’t unusual for me to spend extended periods of time with an uncle and his family working on their farm, in the middle of vast corn fields. That’s when memories came rushing back to me. As I drove through the countryside, it was the perfect time of the year as the silk was exposing itself from the corn cobs from the tall corn that had been planted in the field months earlier. The corn was just beginning to tassel out, and as the wind brushed through those fields, I felt a sense of my youth as I smelled decades past.
Now, since I was also going through the countryside, I also had an opportunity to smell livestock. This is actually where the story starts. Growing up in a small community, it was not unusual for any child who spent any time out in the country to be able to identify what kind of livestock was at a farm before they actually approached the farm, because it was already in the air. My late father-in-law used to say, as he inhaled, “it smells like money,” because livestock meant that there was money in those barns. As a youngster, I didn’t smell money, I smelled manure, and as I was spending this free time in my car driving the winding roads of the countryside, I could pick out the individual farms – that’s a cattle farm. Miles down the road further, I would say to myself, “that’s a pig farm,” yet more miles down the road, I would realize I was approaching a chicken farm. Now, to a city kid, it probably all smelled like manure, but to me it told me the story of each individual farm.
How do we tie this into life insurance? How do we tie this into money? Well, experience has taught me, knowledge has taught me, and wisdom has taught me that if things don’t smell right, I know where to look for the problem. When you have had years of experience to read contracts and put together life insurance policies, you begin to determine what is right for an individual, and what is not correct.
During this trip through the countryside, through the winding roads of the rural communities, I also had an opportunity to stop and pause and reflect at a cemetery that I had visited many years ago of a young couple that I had met with a brand new baby in their arms, and I remember trying to do the right thing, making sure that their lives were ensured to take care of that new family that they had started. Would I have ever have realized that death would come to the mother one year, and two years later death would come to the father, leaving their family of now three teenagers alone. Would I have put together the proper planning to make sure that life would continue on, and that no mistakes on my part would have occurred along the way. That’s what experience has taught me.
In my book, Investments Don’t Hug – Embracing the Life Insurance Asset, I discuss that story in chapter 2, chapter 3 and chapter 4. It’s important to remember the importance of what I do each and every day. This week as I traversed the small roads that winded through the coulees and the hilltops of our local communities, I remembered the problems that I tried to overcome for a young family and the work that we did together.
If you have not purchased my book, consider making that purchase today. Learn about the knowledge through the experience and wisdom that I have lived through, and make it part of the planning for you and for your family.