Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sacrifices We as Women Make....

I had lunch with a lady prosecutor on Friday.......Let me tell you how that came about so you can see how important networking and following up is.  My mother was at a function and ran into a family friend.  This friend knows a city litigator really well and said that I should contact him.  So, I looked up his email on the bar association website and fired an email off to him.  He agreed to meet with me, and he brought a friend, the lady prosecutor......use your contacts!!!  It will work for you.

Anyway, I digress.  I asked this lady if she would do it all over again--going to law school.  She said yes.  But she said it was some of the choices she made on her career path that she would do over.  She is 40, a single parent because of a divorce, and she said that her career killed her marriage.  She said that the choices we make as women define our path.  We have to decide to draw a line in a sand that we won't cross over, in order to keep our families.  She said that the career of law is demanding and will suck you dry if you let it.

I found these words sad, but profound.  What she really is talking about is drawing boundaries.  Not letting work intrude in your family life and making sure that those things that are important to you, do not take the backseat to your career.  Great food for thought.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The things that test us....

Pain.  Yep, you got it, pain.  One thing I will say is that law school chairs are not comfortable.  And the truth is we spend a lot of time, 3 years in fact, sometimes for 6-7 hours a day, in non-ergonomical chairs during class.  I am beginning to think this is catching up with me.

During my 2nd year, first semester, I woke up the day before my second final [as it happens for Evidence]. I got ready, sat on the couch to put my shoes on and crack, I could not straighten up.  I actually screamed with pain, and passed out, scaring my daughter half to death.  She ran for the phone and called my mom, who came and picked me up, and went to the doctor.  At the time, I was told that stress does weird things to your body and that likely after finals were over, I would be good as new.  I took 4 final exams higher than a kite on Vicodin and flexerall.  But when finals were over, I was just a-okay.......

Sunday of this week, I woke up.  Everything was a-okay.  Had a pretty good day running some errands in the morning, watching my year old niece in the afternoon, and helping my daughter move some furniture in her room.  Sat in a chair in the evening, went to get up----zap.  Not as bad as before, manageable with heat and advil---until today.  Today the pain became so intense that I actually threw up.  The only thing comparable I have ever experienced has been giving birth.

I was not going to go to the doctor, but after 2 hours in a classroom chair----forget it.  I could not stand it any longer.  Called my doctor, who could not get me in until MONDAY.....HELLO acute back pain does not wait.

But as I pondered why this has happened again, I wonder if it is the darn chairs at the school?  I spend so much time in those things.  You don't get to just get up when you need to.  Though today I let the professors know that I would be standing in the back and pacing if need be and I was sorry, but it was too painful.

Friday, January 22, 2010

2 Weeks Down, 11 to Go!

Two weeks down right now.  My last semester seems to be flying by for one.  The semester seems a bit poignant as well.  I have began to think of the friends I have made, and how I will miss them.  Job searching has begun in earnest.  Things just seem overwhelming at times. 

This semester's classes seem to be shaping up to be great ones.  I am excited that hopefully I might have information to post here that will be great for single parents to learn.  Several of my classes dovetail nicely.  First, I am taking a class in Education and the Law, which deals with the rights of children, parents, and teachers, and the tensions that lie within.  Second, is Juvenile Law which deals with the right of children and parents, and the tensions that lie within those.  Third is the First Amendment Church and State, which really focuses in on the very same issues.  Then I have Crim Pro II and Sentencing Reform, which carry the same type of themes.

On top of all of this, I am writing one paper this semester and it promises to be a fabulous paper.  The topic that I am writing on is the medical neglect prosecutions for parents who decide that faith healing is the way they will deal with their children's illnesses.  Particularly I am focusing on a local case in my state.  The prosecutor for this case has agreed to meet with me, and I am really excited by this.  One of my friends knows the defense attorney and he has agreed to meet with me.  This paper will be very, very interesting.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Day Two

Learning the art of cross examination was a tough lesson today.  But I was being trained by one of the best legal minds, a Federal Appellate Judge from the 7th Circuit.  I also learned I have a very bad, bad habit.  Because I have done only juvenile court issues to this point, I have been able to lead away on direct exam------BAD, BAD, BAD!  And lazy.  And against the rules of evidence.  But it's permitted in juvie court, not because the evidence rules are out the door, but because no one objects.

I also was reminded how beautiful manners are in a man.  This judge is 83 years young.  A big flirt, and has wonderful manners.  Held doors for me, pulled out a seat for me, and was just cute in this old world, courteous fashion.  *Sigh*  Where have the manners gone in this world?  Which made me think that maybe we as women do not require this anymore?  So, I am demanding this! LOL.

Seriously, starting to get tired from the long days, but I can feel how useful this experience is.  Repeating the same exercise is useful because you learn, and adjust each time.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Class Started Today

For some odd reason, I decided to take a class called Intensive Trial Practice and today was the first day of classes.  There are bonuses.....1) Only one week of classes, 2) Pass/Fail grade, and 3) The ability to learn from some national legal minds.

There are some major cons......1) 12 hour days, 2) 12 hour days, 3) Oh, did I say, 12 hour days?

However, I got some awesome feedback from experts in the field about my tone of voice, how I carry myself, what is distracting when I speak, my mannerisms.....

Also, heard a wonderful quote today:  "The last refuge of a scoundral is"I don't remember."