Tuesday, December 15, 2009

meh.

Lately I've found myself in some sort of manic-funk.  I'll be ridiculously productive, and then... SMACK, I slip into a huge puddle of grotesquely mortifying WASP-y self-pity.  Observe.

Selected Moments from My Days: A Series of Vignettes:

Wake up! Pack Evs' lunch! Work out! Mentally review list of daily personal and professional to-dos! Blow-dry!  Moisturize! Style fabulous casual outfit! ...WAAAAAAH.  I want new jeans.  I miss wearing all my pretty work heels.  I'm not going to be able to renew my training sessions.  I'm going to get faaaaaaaaaaaaaaat.

SNAP OUT OF IT, IDIOT!  Search Monster Legal! Search Indeed!  Search ACC!  Send resumes! Pen cover letters!  Run errands!  Wrap presents! Belt out "All I Want for Christmas is You!" ...WAAAAAAAH.  I have no holiday parties to attend.  I want a sparkly dress.  Everyone else gets a sparkly dress.  My life is so laaaaaaaaaaaaame.

FOR THE LOVE - REMEMBER THE REASON FOR THE SEASON, WOMAN!  Right!  Laundry!  Fold, fold, fold!  Look how much time I have now to cook!  Chop!  Mince!  Braise!  Roast!  Delicious!  I am a culinary master! ...WAAAAAAAH! Omg I'm a Stepford Wife!  I miss my expensive salon highlights and my Business AmEx Gold.  I might as well go watch television for the rest of my life.  I wonder what Khloe and Kourtney are doing?  Oh look, they have on sparkly dresses... fudge, Fudge, FUDGE... What has my life becooooooooooome.
~~~~~~~~~

I told you... Privileged Kid Bullshit, yes?  I've been doing a bit of soul-searching (in between episodes of Keeping Up With The Kardashians and embossing my own "I Love The Situation" Butt-Shorts**, of course), and I think its fascinating how we sort through the different roles in our lives - making one or a few of them the focal point of our identity, and discounting the others.  I spent three long, difficult years transforming myself into an attorney... that's a 1,095 days of picturing myself in the chi-chi suit and heels, doing "important" work (whatever that means).  And then it came to pass... and for a year and a half, I had an easy, impressive (?) answer to the question "What do you do?"  Now, suddenly, because of someone else's decision, my cocktail-party-answers aren't quite so easy (of course, I'm not attending any cocktail parties WAAAAAAH.  kidding.  sorta.), and I don't get up every day to put on the heels and the suit.

Cue the Alanis, because, ironically, I'm not even sure if the exact Lady Lawyer Persona of my immediate past will be making a resurgence in the near future.  I'm not contemplating leaving the law behind entirely, but I think a different direction is better suited for me long-term (both "near future" and "long-term" will, however, include fancy shoes and sparkly dresses - mark my words).  Yet there it is, like some sort of crazed phantom limb, making any productive task I tackle seem second-rate.  Not because I miss my work and not because I was particularly happy with my previous employment.  Nope, just because the stupid picture in my head changed under someone else's terms.

I am a daughter, a friend, a wife (still weird, but true), a puppy-mom. I am a writer (of sorts), a wannabe fashionista and runner, a baby-chef.++

I also just happen to have a JD and a bar license.  WHAT OF IT, PSYCHE?!?  PISS OFF!

Oooo!  And I also purveyor of wallet friendly home hair care! Which has absolutely nothing to do with this post, but does add a little Chuckle Factor.



**What up, Jersey Shore?! Snookie's my girl!

++ Def.: one just coming to terms with her happiness in the kitchen.  Not: one who cooks babies.

33 comments:

  1. You have no idea how much I totally know what you are talking about....

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  2. I personally think cooking babies would be a way better use of your time. Now THAT is an easy answer to the "what do you do?" question.

    Sending happy thoughts for your career / personal exploration and hoping this funemployment period is short-lived and leads to much happier times!

    Ooo, and if you want some budget-friendly sparkle... enter my giveaway for a $20 target card :) Merry Christmas sweet girl, chin up!!!

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  3. I definitely understand having your identity wrapped in your job, even if it's not really what you are about or interested in. Sometimes I dream about being a Stepford. I fantasize about how great it would be, but I can see both sides.

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  4. Tis the season for soul searching it seems.

    Although you were/are a kick ass Lady Lawyer, maybe there's something better suited for you out there.

    If nothing else, the economically friendly home haircare could be a job in and of itself. I'm at home color gal myself--since my stylist up and moved to Arizona...and my previous one wanted $250 for overall color. No way lady. I know how much that crap costs, and it's not $250.

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  5. I think everyone tends to have their identities tied to their jobs - but for some reason lawyers REALLY do. For me at least it was like you couldn't have any other identity since you were a lawyer. Stay at home mom? No. Teacher? No. Sales Clerk. No. The only thing I thought one could be was a lawyer - I feel like they somehow beat that into you at law school. It took stepping away from that to realize that it was okay to be other things. In fact it was probably best.

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  6. I think everyone tends to have their identities tied to their jobs - but for some reason lawyers REALLY do. For me at least it was like you couldn't have any other identity since you were a lawyer. Stay at home mom? No. Teacher? No. Sales Clerk. No. The only thing I thought one could be was a lawyer - I feel like they somehow beat that into you at law school. It took stepping away from that to realize that it was okay to be other things. In fact it was probably best.

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  7. I think boxed hair color can be quite fabulous! And buy a sparkly dress anyways. It will cheer you up :)

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  8. I love this post. I just graduated from law school and moved to the Dallas area while my husband is clerking and CANT FIND ANY LEGAL JOBS FOR MYSELF. It doesn't help that I am licensed to practice in another state, but my type A personality really resents my current state of sitting at home playing mommy to two dogs and ironing his work clothes. Its been a huge punch to my pride and ego...but it has also forced to me to reevaluate my life and what I am looking for in my future job and career. Best of luck to you, you seem to have it together, new adventures will come to you soon. I'd bet on it.

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  9. Oh my goodness. You have no idea how very much this entry hits home for the situation in which Mr Mag and I have found ourselves for the past several months. We appear to be digging ourselves out of the mania and the frustration, etc., etc., but it is a difficult task. I certainly wish you the very best (and a shorter rebound time than our own!)

    xo--

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  10. Um, you are into Jersey Shore? WE HAVE MUCH TO DISCUSS.

    And yeah, I think you can imagine my present particular occupation. . . Talk about an IDENTITY. I know I won't always do this, but I simply cannot imagine not always doing this.

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  11. Thank you for keeping it real, and not pretending that everything is coming up roses, for the sake of your blog.
    Praying for you every day, Kate.
    I think you should focus on your writing and what it could bring to your life. Amazing you are.

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  12. Ohhh sister. It's only funny because I've been there for all of it. And since I've been through it I no longer have cocktail party-PC answers. I can only say I've been there and it's a daily roller coaster. It'll figure itself out eventually, but in the meantime you're definitely in for a whole lot of ups and downs and lots of surprises.

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  13. You Right Now = Me in Four Years. I am a 2L right now and can already tell I hate this legal crap. Blech. What a waste of time, energy, and money. Shoulda gone with my gut and done something more "fun"...

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  14. I know what you mean. I got married this summer and moved across the country. I'm working on my dissertation, but away from campus and my old life... I don't feel like much of anything. I decorate my house and I do crafty things and I bake, but yeah... I'm feelin' ya.

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  15. I can COMPLETELY identify with what you are going through. I am an attorney, and have been practicing for 3 years now...but as of 12/30/09 I will be a SAHM. Yep, I'm leaving my job! Its on my terms, but nonetheless, I'm struggling with the decision. Wondering what I will answer at those cocktail parties. I've gotten pretty comfortable with the "I'm an attorney" answer, and just not sure how I will settle into the SAHM answer. We are moving out of the state for my husband's job; I will have to retake the bar; and then look for another job. I'm trying to embrace it, look forward to not working for the "big firm," and all the b.s. that goes with it, but I'm a little nervous.

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  16. I love you and I completely know where you are coming from on this one. I too went through these swings, but just take comfort that you will land on your feet in no time. I am always here for a chat. I love you!

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  17. Praying that you get a job you will love! My husband was laid off awhile back and went through the same feelings. It is hard.

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  18. I believe there are more happy ex-lawyers than happy lawyers. Just saying.

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  19. I'm praying for you in your job search!! I'm on the opposite side of the spectrum, I went to school and graduated with a "fun" degree in PR and I'm having a very hard time finding a job that I love and I've been thinking about taking the LSAT and going to law school. I wrote you an email actually a few weeks ago about my situation :-) Hopefully everything turns out for you. Enjoy the holidays and your family and get back on the job search after the new year.

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  20. I really thought your baby chef comment meant you were cooking up a baby in your belly.

    Yep, me and all my smart doctorly self didn't understand until the very very end.

    I blame the girl I used to work with who complained of her baby house hurting whenever Aunt Flo came to visit.

    Wow. Time for me to sleep.

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  21. LOL. I dyed my hair last night, too!

    But I heart this whole post 'cuz I've been there, done that.

    I had my hours cut (severely) at work due to budget cuts this year, and well. At first I was all, "PITY PARTAY TIME AND NO ONE ELSE IS INVITED, BITCHES!" but then I realized that hey- that whole "When a door closes, a window opens?" things. So true. It is so, so true.

    You're smart. You'll find something. I know it's panicky and it's hard not to freak out, but my blog became my saving grace for me this year because of my hours being cut, and honestly? I am all the more happier for it. So happy. 'Cuz honestly, I love sitting on my butt and writing. The actual work thing? Eh, not so much- and so having my hours cut wasn't such a bad thing at all.

    I asked my twin sister what I should now write down as a "career" for my 10th highschool reunion. Writer? Blogger?

    "Conspiracist," she said. ;)

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  23. I hear ya sister! You will find a new and better identity. In a few weeks, months or maybe even years, you will look back and go "ooooh so thats why that happened, thats why I couldn't wear a sparkly party dress." Anyways....thats all my pearls of wisdom from being a few steps ahead of you on the work-related life-changing disappointments track.

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  24. PLEASE WRITE A NOVEL! There's nothing I look forward to each day more than your posts! It feels like you're sitting right next to me telling me all of this! You write like you think and I love it!

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  25. I'm interested to see where things go for you. I'm praying to get laid off. I think it's when you figure out who you really are.

    see I can be serious and reflective

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  26. I always have an internal battle going on inside between being productive and lazy...haha. It's a toss up on which one will win.

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  27. I can definitely empathize. If you ever want perspective from someone in-house who struggled with some of the same decisions, I'm happy to offer my two cents.

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  28. I know exactly how you feel! Lost my job in April (on April Fools Day, no less) and then lost my second one (only a temp job though) about 2 weeks ago. I have been and am going through the roller coaster of emotions that you describe here!

    I'm not happy you lost your job, but I am happy to come over here and read about your adventures and be able to relate!

    Find the positive in every situation...it is the only things that saves me some days. Like how doing 639 loads of laundry on a Tuesday will save me from spending my weekend doing it. Yay for lazy weekends with my employed husband!! ;~)

    Thanks for today's post! Cheers from my couch/kitchen/car/lunch date with recruiter, to yours!

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  29. Nail on the head!! I'm so worried about losing my professional identity (the dif btw you and me might be that I love love love my job) that I am forcing my husband to endure a commuter marriage!! I can afford to quit and stop the 350 mile commute but I'm afraid I'll have to tell people "what I do..."

    You've given me reason to reconsider this choice!! Thanks!

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  30. Kate,

    You always make me laugh, and I love your posts. You can just say you are a writer. It's what you do! :) I'm sad about your situation and that you feel this way because I think you are fantastic! (this sounds weirdly creepy, but I don't mean it that way)

    I had these same feelings when I graduated from college and I felt so sad that I couldn't get a job. But I know you'll get through it and land something WAY better soon! I can't wait to see what happens because I know you'll do great. I'm just glad I can read about it.

    Also, you're still coming to CA right?

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  31. Jersey Shore is a fantastic train wreck and I love every post that involves it. :)

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  32. ok, so these comments make me REALLY scared about graduating. once i got through 1L year, there was no turning back...but do i actually want to be a lawyer? i don't think so. i'm terrified of being unhappy forever :( i much prefer my more creative identities!

    thank you for writing this post. you will find your way...we all will...there really isn't any other choice!

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  33. To figure out where your heart is, I think a valuable exercise might be imagining that all jobs require the same outfit, and it's an ultra casual one. NOW how do you want to spend your time, since it will have nothing to do with what you're wearing?

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happy little comments!