This lazy Sunday evening is a good time to catch up on blog business. Although…. I think I’ll post-date this so I don’t end up with a ton of posts on the same day. Thanks to lawful living for the tag that inspired this post.
So let’s take a reflective look at 1L year. It’s been a wonderful and difficult and crazy year for many reasons, only one of them being the departure from my working life of six years to the start of law school. Among the many changes, experiences and events:
- I’ve lived an hour away from my husband around 60 to 70 percent of the time, yet our relationship has been at least as good, possibly better than ever. I attribute this partly to the fact that we have less time to get on each other’s nerves about crap that doesn’t matter, and partly to the fact that it’s easier (for us anyway) to appreciate one another when we see each other two or three or four days per week. That said, I’m certainly looking forward to being back together full-time in August, with baby not far behind.
- Eight months ago we decided to “see what happens” for the first time in our five-year marriage regarding having a baby. Two months later I found out I was pregnant. It was a little scary to consider pregnancy during law school (images of running out of class to vomit danced in my head last December) but I’ve been extremely blessed to not feel like crap except on the very rare occasion.
- A surprise for me this year has been genuinely enjoying the return to school and the study of law. Unlike many law students, I came here with a specific goal (to become a sole practitioning immigration attorney) which stemmed from my experience with my husband’s immigration process and my involvement in an online forum of people in similar situations. So I didn’t know how I would take to the study of contracts or property or criminal law. As it turns out, I really enjoy studying law, and almost all my classes have been interesting to me in one way or another. Being a little older and having had some life experience has definitely been a bonus in this way. I think I am well-suited to study the law, but had I done it when I was 22 or 23, I’m pretty sure it would have been torturous for me. Having a lot more connections to “real” life and being able to relate many areas of study to practical situations has made most subjects pretty fascinating. And the more fascinated I am, the easier it is to study and the better I do (usually).
That all said….
Best memory of 1L year:
This is strictly the best law school memory: Going out after my Civil Procedure mock trial in late November with my classmate/friends for mojitos and dinner followed by a series of strange blue-green drinks. Ha, I’m so old I didn’t know what they were, but they tasted like candy! That would actually be the last time I had much to drink for nine months. I guess it was a memorable night because we all felt like we had accomplished something intimidating and distinctly lawyer-like during our whole experimental civil procedure class, and it was great to go out, relax and just enjoy’s each other’s company before we all burrowed in to prepare for our first set of law school exams.
That memory is closely followed by completing my December 16th torts exam, heading almost immediately to hometown, packing, and then getting on a plane to Mexico the next morning to meet up with F. That memory is not first in part because while I know all that happened, my post-finals brain blocked out any actual memory of any of that happening.
Worst memory of 1L year:
I really didn’t have a terrible experience this year. I’m too old and wise — or maybe conservative (in a personal sense) — compared to many law students to have partaken in any regrettable evenings of boozing or done anything else I really wish I hadn’t. The worst moments were any day in the early fall semester when I showed up in contracts not completely prepared, or just not really comprehending the material, hoping to god the professor wouldn’t call on me. I came into law school hanging onto a deep anxiety about talking in class and public speaking in general. I’ve gotten over a bit more of it this year, but I’m still not someone who thinks really well on my feet, so it always makes me nervous to be unprepared and have to answer complex legal questions.
The other thing that comes to mind (and its definitely more of an experience, not a memory) is the regular sense of dread about the state of the economy and the decision to return to school, necessitating far more student loans than I had ever contemplated before law school. That will be with me the next two years as well, but on at least some level I’m confident things will work out all right in the end.