The other day, two former clients reminded me why I became a plaintiff’s attorney. I had first met the two, a married couple, nearly two years ago. They were tenants who had endured severe harassment at the hands of a former landlord. I filed a suit on their behalf and pursued claims against the landlord. Over time, my clients and I got to know each other. The couple—now grandparents—had encountered struggles as young adults and spent many years apart, but persevered and were now continuing their education. The husband was pursuing a degree to work with at-risk youth while his wife was pursuing a business degree. Just over a month ago—over a year and a half since I was first retained—their case resolved. Although it was the best result under the circumstances, it was not the result I had hoped for. At our final meeting, I wished them well and bid them farewell.
While I realize cases sometimes take unexpected turns, it is nonetheless frustrating to work so hard for clients and have things not work out as we had hoped. This case was particularly trying because these two clients were among the best people I have ever worked with—patient, appreciative, and understanding. I will certainly miss working with them.
A couple of weeks ago, I received a package in the mail. Enclosed was a card and a small desktop item. The card read “God often sends His blessings through the thoughtful people He brings into our lives. Thank you and God bless you in return for your kindness.” The desktop item read “You’re the friend everyone wishes they had.”
To say this gesture was unexpected would be an understatement. Until receiving this package from my clients, I had felt only disappointment and frustration about the outcome of their case. After opening it, the disappointment and frustration still remained but were immediately eclipsed by immense gratitude for the opportunity to have known and worked with these two individuals. Even though things did not go as expected, realizing that they valued the time and effort I had spent on their case—and that the recovery I obtained for them may have brought some closure to a difficult period of their life—has meant the world to me. I have since put their gift on my desk as a reminder of the good people we fight for every day.