Today is one of those days I treasure the most...I'm taking the day off! Yes, I am starting my Easter weekend today and its an amazing feeling!
Today is a big day in our household, as our first child, Miss J, has Kindergarten Round-up! I can remember J as a baby when I just heard the term “Kindergarten Round-Up”. Now I am mere hours away from walking my daughter into elementary school for the first time. I wanted to make it a special day and spend the day with her. Plus, I couldn't possibly miss the Easter Egg Hunt at day-care later today! So today is just one of those happy days where I can stay in my jammies until 9:30, look in my kids' eyes and say “Mommy is NOT going to work today!”
Like most people, I complain about my job a lot. On the weeks I have back to back appellate briefs, or a travel schedule that crosses my eyes, I often get down on my job. But, I’m reminded on days like these how lucky I am. Sure, its hard work, sure its stressful, sure it means a lot of late nights. But, because of the career I have, and the firm I have chosen, I can make an entire day out of Kindergarten Round-up. Days like this remind me that I have chosen the right career path.
Because of my job, I rarely have to miss a parents’ breakfast, rarely miss a field trip, never send my child to daycare with a cold. I work with people who happily cover court appearances and depositions when I have to head to a school party, or a morning doctor appointment.
My husband punches in at work, and can't miss work without incurring a "hit" which could (if enough hits are accumulated) lead to termination. Watching him deal with the time clock has made me very aware of how truly blessed I am.
I was in an all day mediation yesterday that took about 9 hours to complete. It was a huge case with a lot of parties. We worked hard to settle it and because of that we did not finish until 6:30 p.m. I had scheduled this mediation on a day when Todd was home, so I didn’t mind having to stay longer than my usual end-of-day. But one of the clients at the mediation was walking out and stopped to thank all the attorneys at the mediation. He looked at us and said “This is why I could never be an attorney, too many late hours”. I smiled, keeping my secret that actually, this career CAN be one of the best to raise children with.
Now before you roll your eyes at me, remember I said it CAN be. I know that it is not the norm for this profession to be the perfect fit for a family. But this career comes with a special gift...flexibility. Flexibility is a working Mom's best friend.
The flexibility, the ability to choose your corner of the legal world, is what I love the most about this career. That flexibility is not necessary easy, but its there. Sure it takes career sacrifices, often less pay, less respect, fewer accolades. But, because of this flexibility a lawyer can be anyone from a sole practicioner working 3 days a week to a big city lawyer billing 80+ hours. There are so many ways to make a career out of the legal profession. This is the reason why I sat bored to tears in constitutional law, why I didn't sleep for a week before the Iowa bar exam. It's the reason behind the mountains of school loans, the hard work, the tears, the stress. Like I have said before, in order for me to be a working Mom and leave my kids everyday I had to find a job I love. So, legal profession, please accept this blog as my love letter to you!
Days like this, where I can have the day off to make Kindergarten Round-up memorable for my daughter reminds me that I'm lucky to be J.D. Mom.
Now, off to celebrate my day off!