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I have been receiving e-mails from a legal publisher offering a plaque commemorating my

admission to the bar 35 years ago.

Why would I need to pay for a piece of laminated wood? Do I really need to adorn my office

wall with such a useless keepsake? I don’t even display the diplomas and certificates received

from educational institutions and professional organizations.

But the offer caused me to reflect and recognize how life-changing and transformative the past

35 years have been.

I took a quick account of the major milestones that occurred in 1987: (a) graduating from law

school; (b) passing the New York and Connecticut bar exams; (c) becoming admitted to the

Connecticut bar (followed by New York in 1988, just in case you were worried); (d) my

wedding; and (e) turning 25 two

days later. Trust me, I’ll be writing about entering the next age

decade in September.

There are many card-carrying members of the same club, some of whom are old friends and

colleagues. I recognize that the milestone is by no means unique.

But it’s hard to believe. So goes the phrase, tempest fugit.

The year 1987 was the commencement of many new chapters, both personal and professional.

What’s most astounding is that, over the past 35 years, I remained in the same career, married to

the same man. I’m not sure which accomplishment is more impressive or odds-defying. Now

please don’t misconstrue this musing as complacency on my part. Rather, the legal profession,

as with the institution of marriage, is a labor of love. Both pursuits require equal parts of

perseverance, strength, fortitude, dedication, stubbornness, and passion. Taken together, they are

not for the faint of heart.

I truly subscribe to the philosophy that nothing worth having comes easy. The past 35 years

have been challenging at worst, rewarding at best. While raising my wonderful son and

daughter, I created Goidel Law Group, a third child with a similar surname. I am grateful to the

father of the first two for his unwavering support while I created and raised the third. For the

past eleven years, this third child has required innumerable hours of care, devotion, and attention. Through nurturing and dedication, this child has grown and developed into a practice with distinct personality and incredible purpose. I am proud of Goidel Law Group’s accomplishments and our team of smart, caring professionals. Over the next decade, I look forward to developing and launching additional programs and services for the largest demographic we assist, that being individuals managing the challenges of aging, chronic illnesses, and/or cognitive impairment. There is a crisis in care, and an alarming shortage of professionals to assist this expanding demographic.

How can we collaborate to help those who are in need, along with their care partners?

Because the ticking of my professional biological clock has become almost deafening, I have

begun to double down on my efforts to address this crisis. Recognizing the success of the

Concierge Care Coordination® model in my practice, and how it brings incredible support and

value to clients and their family members, I have been developing and funding internship and

scholarship programs at two New York universities designed to encourage and incentivize social

work students to pursue careers in gerontology and geriatrics. While promoting the

interdisciplinary model, we are hoping that law, medical, and social work students learn to

appreciate the benefits and value of collaboration for themselves and those they will ultimately

serve. We are invested in the success of these programs and excited to work within academia to

reach and impact the next generation of professionals. This is just one example of our

continuing efforts.

If you want to help support these initiatives, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

While practicing and working at anything for 35 years may in of itself be an accomplishment,

I’m looking forward to seeing what Goidel Law Group achieves over the next 35 years (both

with and without me).

Maybe I’ll just change my mind about the plaque if it’s offered in 2032, when I reach the 45 th

year mark.


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