There is an article in this month’s ABA Journal about loving being a lawyer, with quotes from people about why they love being a lawyer. I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been doubting my own career choice lately, and occassionally feeling the sudden urge to cancel my lease, sell all of my possessions, and go work at a coffee shop somewhere. I’m not actually going to do that, but it crosses my mind. So I flipped open the magazine hoping to find some encouragement, and instead I see this quote from this woman from Idaho, grateful that the law “never sleeps” so she can work from the evening to the wee hours of the morning “tackling esoteric legal issues arising from complex commercial litigation.” Seriously?! That is what I HATE about the law. While I like the theoretical flexibility of being able to chill with my mom and non-existent kids in the afternoon and then work through the night, that’s not the way it actually works for me. I work all day so that I can work all night because the law doesn’t friggin sleep.
Lately, I’ve been finding out that other people do not work as hard as I do, and that I do not have to work this hard. Granted, there will always be busy times and “work/life balance” will always be weighted in the work direction in this job, but it’s possible to have a little more weight on the “life” side. It’s possible to do good work, work hard, and have a life. Who knew?! So I’m now on my own little personal mission to restore some sanity to my life. Because in some ways the people in the article are right–there are many things to love about being a lawyer. And lawyer does not have to be synonymous with “no life outside work to speak of.”