For nearly my entire life, I’ve been the model of health. I rarely got sick, was free from significant injury (except a dislocated shoulder in college), and rarely missed a day of school or work. I would hear about others’ health challenges and could empathize, but couldn’t really relate. I took for granted feeling good in the morning, going out for a morning jog, and going to the gym for a good workout.
Until October 16, 2017. Cancer. Prostate cancer. The same disease that took my dad’s life six and a half years prior.
I felt fine but now had all sorts of questions, uncertainty, and anxiety racing through my mind. Suddenly, I had a new appreciation for the 51 years of good health I had enjoyed. All the years of “easy good health” were suddenly put into perspective. I searched online, hoping to understand what was happening inside my body. I talked to numerous men who had walked this path before me. But ultimately, my doctor and I prescribed a treatment plan, and we walked through the plan together. I knew he had my best interests in mind as we discussed options, knowing his professional expertise and training gave him more insight than what I could find online.
Investing is kind of like that, as well. I came into this profession in 2003. In fact I often have joked the markets woke up from the early century doldrums in March, 2003 when Foster Group issued me an opportunity to join the company. For the first 54 months, the markets just went up. I was a bit perplexed when we had a month that was flat or perhaps even slightly negative! Then, ten years ago, I learned how fickle the markets can be and appreciated the good times more as 2008 ended.
Following that, the markets had another great run, and it became easy to get complacent and think the good times were simply a “new normal.” But then the month of March happened, like a cancer diagnosis, and we were reminded: It’s the willingness to walk through the volatility that makes us investors and not speculators.
That’s where my cancer story ties in. I worked with my doctor to get through the valley, to find a solution and emerge healthy. I didn’t panic and take matters into my own hands. I listened to counsel and direction, learned how the body works, and executed the plan. The future is still unknown, though all signs indicate successful treatment. But I have confidence and peace, because I’ve stuck to a solid plan. I have a renewed appreciation for a healthy body!
If the market volatility of the last few months has gotten you a bit unsettled, talk to your financial advisor, appreciate the good times when we have them, and walk through the valleys with confidence. Work your plan and don’t be afraid to call us. We put your interests first. Every time.
PLEASE NOTE LIMITATIONS: Please see Important Advertising Disclosure Information and the limitations of any ranking/recognitions, at www.fostergrp.com/disclosures. A copy of our current written disclosure statement as set forth on Part 2A of Form ADV is available at www.adviserinfo.sec.gov.
PLEASE NOTE LIMITATIONS: Please see Important Disclosure Information and the limitations of any ranking/recognitions, at www.fostergrp.com/info-disclosure/. A copy of our current written disclosure statement as set forth on Part 2A of Form ADV is available at www.adviserinfo.sec.gov.