On the subject of my compensation lawyers, Karl’s insights in November 2016 have a prescient quality (as my poorly prepared lawyers stumble badly in the final settlement conference in mid-2018). Karl says:
“Don’t think of your lawyers as your friends. That they are NOT. It’s only money to them. They are probably not the best lawyers for you – but now you are stuck with them.”
By now, I finally figure out something important: my chances of an insurance payout, considered “an excellent opportunity” in April 2016, become merely “a gamble” a year later. My case is has been demoted. Initially, I was treated like royalty, with an Associate as my lawyer. Now I am stuck with an overworked and barely competent junior solicitor (with a dotty paralegal who cannot add up a column of figures or send a comprehensible email).
My frustration grows as my lawyers repeatedly keep critical information from me and treat me as a “bad bet” after they determine that I am too old to work. They keep incurring the billable hours, of course. This law firm (I later learn) is one of the first law firms in the world to list on the stock exchange. It is a gigantic corporation with hundreds of employees. I feel infuriated and utterly powerless.
(At the very end of my case, as I am negotiating the final settlement myself, the insurance company adjuster tells me over the phone: “Your lawyers have not done you any favors, Wendy.” It is a welcome confirmation of what I knew all along.)
Possible negligence by tweed shire council
In September 2016, Karl and I agonize when it becomes apparent that the Tweed Shire Council has probably been negligent in their planning and management of the road where Karl died. A motorcyclist dies in a crash on the same corner in October 2016. And two people died a year before Karl died in precisely the same spot. That makes four and anecdotal information from the police and Uki residents (and official road crash statistics) identify more deaths on that stretch of road before 2015: six deaths in six years.
At that time, my lawyers briefly consider suing the Council for negligence.
But Karl and I decide to keep to our original plan, primarily because of our shared assessment of my lawyers’ incompetence, a view shared by my two senior lawyer friends, Peter and Peter.
I try hard to keep the compensation case from devouring my attention. I have so much more on my plate. So I smile when I record this message from Karl in my journal:
You need radical self-acceptance now. Then, from that place of peace and openness, you can truly receive and experience the beauty of all the blessings that life has in store for you! Please feel my love like a cool shower washing over your tired body and spirit. My love will be a balm — a solace — for you always.
Dismissing my obsession with my compensation case as a distraction from more urgent matters, Karl exclaims:
At this specific time, your life needs to be only (and totally) about trust and faith. Nothing is harmed or damaged, as I see it.
Karl’s other advice involves keeping a cool head, being strategic, focusing on what matters, and continuing with my writing.
Karl repeatedly announces that he is now a fixed star in my heavens and that I can relax in the knowledge that he will never leave me.
And Karl is taking care of the money.
He wants me to know that I can accept that reality and attend to other urgent matters.
Karl says, “You don’t need to do anything about me!”
That is a comforting thought as I continue my long journey into myself. I begin to imagine that Karl is performing for me the same service that Rumi’s beloved Shams Tabriz offered in leaving Rumi:
I left so that you could mature in your soul.