Friday, July 23, 2010

the world according to my clients.

i wish i lived in the world invented by the overactive imaginations of my clients.  no, really.  where a biased (in their favor) sense of what's right and just reigns supreme, everyone answers their calls on the first ring, and no one ever sends a bill for services rendered. 

i wish i could share with you some wisdom i've gleaned from clients this week, but, unfortunately it's all protected by that pesky attorney-client privilege "thing."  anyway, suffice it to say, it has been a long week. 

yesterday, i was hit with the realization that i am an attorney.  i am doing things that are affecting people's lives.  people trust me and expect me to get them from point a to point b.

this was a paralyzing thought.

i immediately dialed my friend and colleague at her extension and asked her to come down the hall to my office.  she obliged.  i had a semi nervous breakdown/panic attack, which she assured me was completely normal, and welcomed me to the practice of law.

i guess it's exciting to be at that stage where i have my own files, and i'm making the decisions about what to do and how to handle any and all crises that arise.  on the other hand, it is exceedingly stressful, and i have begun waking up at night, wondering if i've dotted all my i's and crossed all my t's.  it's also semi-intimidating to be practicing with lawyers who are more than double my age, and have been practicing law for longer than i've been alive.  this is all complicated by the fact that i can't even fit into a power suit to give myself some false sense of confidence (see my maternity clothes rant post). 

when john and i took our euro-trip whirlwind tour after the bar exam last year, we spent a day on germany's highest mountain peak, the zugspitze.  it was a beautiful day, and we enjoyed the sights immensely (especially germany's highest biergarten!)  on a whim, we also decided to climb to the very tip top of the mountain, so we could touch the little cross monument designating the actual tallest part of the peak.  i had not expected that we were going mountain climbing (we took a ski lift up), so i was wearing a pair of flats from the gap.  not exactly hiking grade.  anyway, john, as per usual, pressured me and convinced me that i'd always regret not doing this, so we climbed in a single file line to this peak.  (it was a very disorganized process and people speaking languages i didn't recognize were grabbing at my legs, trying to hold on.  there was nothing protecting any of us from falling down the side of the mountain, and it was literally the most nervewracking, frightening half hour of my life).  but anyway, we made it.  we posed for a picture with the cross, and for two seconds i forgot about how dangerous this whole scenario was, while i smiled triumphantly.  as soon as the picture was taken, i looked down and immediately panicked, "oh my god.  we could FALL. ALL. THE. WAY. DOWN. THERE." 

that is sort of how i felt yesterday. 

the silver lining is that my malpractice insurance is paid up.

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