Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Fourth of July!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday today and celebrating their freedoms! I am planning to go to the baseball game with law school friends tonight to celebrate, and I'm hoping the weather cooperates because they're calling for flash floods/ heavy rain/ thunderstorms (official forecast today: 100% chance of rain. Doesn't sound too promising, I'm afraid!) But if all else fails, we'll just go out to dinner or to a movie or some other relaxing indoor activity.

I have today and tomorrow off work, so I don't have to go back till Monday. I'm taking it easy today for the most part, but after today it's going to be a jam-packed weekend. R. and I have a big custody hearing on Monday, and we haven't had very much time to prepare (in fact, I just met with the client for the first time yesterday), so I have to help him get some arguments and case law pulled together. This is one that I really believe in, and if there's ever been a trial I'd really want to win, this would be it! I wish I could just argue the whole case in court instead of just doing the prep work, but that will come soon enough.

On top of that, I have outlines due on Monday for the Moot Court competition problem I'm writing (or, um, supposed to be writing . . . haven't really put one word on paper yet). The draft of the entire problem (about 35-40 pages) is due on August 1st, so I'm going to be absolutely booking it for the month of July. I probably need to start getting up at 6am so I can write for awhile before work, and then write for an hour or two every night. My last day of work is July 30th, I have to be out of my summer apartment on the 31st, that project is due on the 1st, and then I am going on the most needed vacation I will ever have gone on! I can't wait.

I feel as if I have changed a LOT just in the 45 days since I moved here and started my job, and I hope that the changes are good ones, although I'm still trying to figure it all out. I've grown up a ton and gained a ton of confidence. I now know that I can do a whole lot of things that I never would have thought I could do before. This whole summer has been about stretching myself and pushing my limits in pretty much every way possible--working at a challenging and stressful job that demanded advanced skills I didn't have when I started (but I think I have them now), living in a place that initially stressed me out a lot with all its vastness and people and noise and traffic, meeting and growing close to a bunch of new people, and learning how to be just fine with primarily brand-new friends, since most of my close law school friends are not here for the summer. I feel like I've gotten less sensitive and more aggressive because that is the type of attitude that's expected and rewarded at a fast-paced litigation firm, and I'm not sure how I feel about that--I don't want "less sensitive" to start meaning "less compassionate," because that's not ok with me. I've been also trying to assess where I'm at spiritually after weeks of being the only Christian at my job. To be painfully honest, I've been trying a whole lot harder to fit in and impress the attorneys than to be a light for Christ, and at church last Sunday, I started feeling so very convicted about that and how I need to change. I'm not sure what that will look like for me, but I need to gather the courage to just be different and to treat people the way I would want to be treated and to do my work with exemplary diligence and to talk about people the way I would want to be talked about (which hits close to home because hanging out with my coworkers is often, well, a gossip fest. I'm not saying you can never poke fun at others at all, but when it's mean-spirited or rude or disrespectful, that's a different story, and I don't need to have a part in that). So, I need to be praying that God would show me how to be a witness in these last few weeks, to leave the fingerprints of a different, joyful, meaningful life all over my office.

I got this fortune with my Chinese food the other day and I thought it was spot on as I've dealt with the many challenges presented by this summer:

No, it's not my character to give up, and I'm not going to give up now. I'm going to keep working hard, to continue trying to be a Christian witness at my job, to keep trying to make a positive impression on the attorneys without compromising on what I believe is right, and to continue building up all those legal skills I desperately need for my career. Now is SO not the time to give up when I've made it this far.

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