off track (or what the hell am i gonna do when i grow up?)

True confessions…this is gonna be long so you may want to tune out…

Well, school is officially in full swing which means tons of reading, little or no time to craft, and loads of self-doubt. I’m still getting the hang of the whole time management/retaining the material in 300+ pages of reading per week per class and am just keeping my head above water. I’ve gotten a lot of emails and comments lately from friends (who I can only assume are well meaning) who’ve mentioned that I seem “lost” (yes, thanks for the reminder) and/or “I sound really unhappy in law school” (yes, you have such keen insight) and/or “Are you sure you want to be a lawyer?” (No, but that’s not something I can address in the short term). I suppose this is the sort of uncertainty and self doubt that can normally cloud one’s mid-to-late-20s but I happen to know an obnoxiously overachieving lot (I used to count myself in that group too) so a lot of them are well on track to make their first million by 35 or 40 or earlier…so anyway, that’s the roundabout way of saying that it’s hard not to feel terribly insecure about one of the biggest (and thus far unsuccessful) decisions of my life, so while I share your concern (hell, it’s my life) I do not need to be reminded about my indecision right now. A lot of my life sucks plenty enough as is without these kind little reminders and I’m gonna lose my shit if one more person looks at me because I’m a lunatic for not having figured out the entire trajectory of my legal career yet. And if you can’t deal with my utter indecision, come back to me in ten years and maybe I’ll have my shit together.

The problem is that I’m stuck. Literally stuck. I have no employment prospects post-grad and with 3L being as soul-crushing as it’s been has done little to inspire me to even try bothering. I’ve hated just about every second of law school and in hindsight I sadly went to law school b/c a) it was expected of me and b) I thought it’d be this impressive accomplishment. Three years later I’ve concluded a) screw expectations and b) most people really hate lawyers so law school is anything but “impressive.” That said, if I could go back in time, I would never, ever do this whole mess over again. But I’ve tried hard not to dwell on that fact so I’m nervously looking forward hoping that I will someday make peace with JD, that I’ll pass the freakin’ bar this summer, and that I’ll find some halfway decent use for my grossly overpriced education. I’m a pessimist to the core so I’m not exactly seeing the silver lining right now.

I guess I’m really sick and tired of explaining myself to people…I suppose I could just not care but I get a tad bit irked (read pissed off) when I have to justify every freaking decision of my 27 years on earth. Truth be told, I’ve made a lot of decisions (some good, some bad, for better or for worse) in the past five years without a lot of thought. It’s hardly an ideal situation but rest assured it’s been one helluva ride. Serendipity and circumstance can work in mysterious ways. Case in point–my relationship. I get a lot of raised eyebrows and dubious looks when I tell people how Jeff and I met (the internet), the time line of our relationship (off and on during past three years, we were just friends for a while before that), the fact that most of our relationship has been long distance (I’d venture 90% as a good guess), what Jeff does for a living (motorcycles/blues musician), or the fact that almost three years later my parents still haven’t met him (I would never subject someone to that level of scrutiny unless I saw wedding bells in my future). Why this is any stranger than meeting someone in a bar I do not know? Or how about the fact that people break up and get back together all the time or the fact that love doesn’t always pay attention to geography or the fact that families aren’t always thrilled about relationship choices? The simple truth is that we work and why that’s so hard to articulate I do not know? Or I guess it’s a matter of people not listening and/or not understanding.

Perhaps I am jinxing myself in writing this but my relationship with Jeff is just about the only thing I’m hopeful about right now. Yes, we’ve had our fair share of ups and downs (together and apart) but having spent some time away from the relationship, I can honestly say I would not trade him in for the world. My love life (pre-Jeff or during our year apart) has involved a royal asshole of a lawyer, a future lawyer who had no life outside of the law, and a would be academic/doormat. All of these guys would’ve possibly received much more approval from the folks (and some friends as well) and I suspect any of three might have provided a good deal of financial security (why my parents pushed me so hard to get educated and then have me marry someone just for money is well beyond my comprehension?). But at least one of them would’ve treated me badly (really badly) and for very different reasons, any of the three would’ve eventually bored me to tears. Long story short, our relationship works and that’s plenty good enough for me. That said, I’m gonna see Jeff in Memphis this weekend and I am elated!!

But beyond that I guess I’m a little guilt laden. My mom was hospitalized for a few days last week–largely stress related. I was not solely responsible for all of that but I feel bad because my mom and I did not part on good terms after the holidays and there’s much of my life that she disapproves of right now. Disapproval (from my mom and from others) notwithstanding, I don’t think I’m doing anything incredibly stupid and I suspect that when all’s said and done I will land on my feet and find my way.

Apologies for the cranky, cranky post. See what happens when I’m deprived of my crafting time? After I get back from Memphis I need to find some time to put together swap packages and finish up a much neglected sweater.

Good grief, is it only Tuesday??

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6 responses to “off track (or what the hell am i gonna do when i grow up?)

  1. There’s always international espionage: you could use your law degree and your mad ninja skills. If I know anyone who can, it’s you, dude.

  2. Also, that would help you outwit your creditors. Damn, why didn’t I think of this before I took this bogus Hollywood gig?

  3. good grief dude, things are nuts right now.

    a) people are CONSTANTLY telling me I should be meeting boys over the Internet. But then they are slamming you for doing the same thing?? FUCK THEM.

    b) i think you will be able to find something to do that uses your law school education without necessarily forcing you into a big-time lawyer position that it sounds like you would hate. i wanted to go to law school to go work for the ACLU. maybe something along those lines? and one of my lawyer friends now works as an in-house M&A lawyer for a fortune 500 company and LOVES it and it’s soooooo much better than working at a law firm. (9-5).

    regardless next time someone says that to you, my response would be “Would you like the list of things I think are wrong with your life? I’ve got it right here. Ready?”

    c) sorry about your mom. but moms not getting along with daughters…. you know that’s been going on since the beginning of time, and i think you just have to let her stress when she’s going to stress and try to just keep going about your life not worrying about it too much. i mean obviously worry when she winds up in the hospital!!! but some of that stress is always going to be there because she’s your mom and she wants to protect you and make your life work and that’s always in some ways going to be in conflict with you living your own life. you know?

    Hang in there. Get through the 3L year as best you can. Don’t stress that maybe it wasn’t the best thing on earth you could have ever chosen to do. Lordie, girl, you’ve got years and years ahead of you to make better choices. Don’t want to make all the good ones right now! 🙂

  4. sara babe…it’s your life & you don’t have to explain yourself to anybody! i just want you to be happy whether that be making your living by practicing law or selling flowers in a market somewhere. do what is in your own best interest & screw what everyone else has to say. no matter what you decide, i’m behind you all the way! at the end of the day, these people that look down their nose at you b/c their lives are oh, so perfect (NOT!) aren’t important enough to worry about.

  5. there is nothing people love giving more than “advice”–especially when it is condescending, ill-informed, and generally useless. fuck all! you and jeff are a force to be reckoned with and anyone who has seen you two together should realize that you two just get it.

    i am really sorry to hear about your mom. someone once told me (after i was worried about my mother because i was causing her worry) is that worry and stress are often choices about how we respond to situations. in other words, there’s only so much you can do, and it’s not your fault.

    it’s not like you’re a serial murderer. you’re a serial crafter. there’s a big difference.

    *hugs*

  6. the silent observer

    some friends might question decisions in your life, but I am one friend who definitely believes that choices made, better or worse, will make you the friend I consider so dear…so I only offer support when asked, or thoughts when solicited…as for your boy choices, I already think of this one as a keeper…so I dunno who’s giving you crap…but they haven’t meet the guy, or you when you are around him….

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