Where did summer go? I know where summer went. I worked/vomited/slept it away. Sigh. I had such big plans for summer. Traveling, swimming, reading lots of books for fun, brushing up my Italian, actually cooking my husband dinner (he's probably relieved that one didn't happen). And yet, here we are, three weeks from the first day of classes. Sad. Depressing. And I was starting to be such a nice person again too.
I found that law school makes me into someone I really don't like. It's not the legal profession, or legal work, it's just the law school environment. Yes, the practice of law can be just as contentious and adversarial, but with law school, it's every day. Every day it's someone calling on me in class, wanting me to prove to my classmates how ignorant I am. Every day it's some jackass asking ridiculous and irrelevant questions, wasting our class time. Every day it's one of my blowhard classmates (a few are even my friends) bragging how much they know about law. Every day I'm on edge, wanting to prove myself to, I dunno, somebody, but at the same time fighting a deep feeling of complete apathy, that none of this even matters. I'll still have the same grade, the same job in the end, so why am I stressing myself out? Good question.
I knew when I started law school I did not want to work at a Big Firm. We wanted to stay in this city, and the Big Firms here are for the most part sweat shops. Sure, they're very well-paying sweat shops. But I would really like to work 40 to 50 hours per week, not 70 to 80. Big Firms in other cities in other states are allowing paycuts for only working 40 hours, for those who actually want to see their families. But we tend to be about a decade behind the rest of civilization, so that's not really an option here. I would have liked a Big Firm summer internship however, because that would have been a nice salary bargaining chip for Mid Size firm. And I probably could have been talked into working at a Big Firm for a year or two to pay off Gigantic Student Loans. But again, that would require a lot of work I was not willing to put in. I made enough sacrifices to my time, my relationships, and my marriage just to get mediocre grades. Doing more is just not in me. Yet, I feel so guilty about it, like I'm a failure for settling for mediocrity.
My goal for the 2L year is to not take things so seriously. I'm going to be dilligent in my reading and my outlining, try to sound like a competant person in class, and the rest of the time, concentrate on what's important: my sanity. I have a lot to do, I've taken on a crazy amount of work for this semester, but I can't let it tear me down. I need to stay sane, I need to stay healthy, and I'd really like to stay married!