I went to brunch yesterday with Karrie, and we discussed, among many things, my to job or not to job dilemma. Karrie is a very good listener, and she also gives very good advice. These are a few of the things that I took away from talking with her:
1. Working Moms are Good Moms Too. Karrie reminded me of why she feels that having a career outside the home makes her a better mom (which, just to clarify, is not to say that I now think all parents should work). A job can provide some time to yourself, interaction with adults, and opportunities to accomplish and learn things. It can make you appreciate time with your child more. Somehow it reminds me of that saying (that goes something like) there is no way to be a perfect mom, but there are a million ways to be a good mom. Working or not working - both can be good.
2. The Devil you Don't Know Can be a Real Schmo. Karrie sugested that I start looking into what specific jobs are out there, because trying to decide whether to get a job in a vacuum is too hard. And I think she is right. I have been comparing my current life staying home with Miles to the complete unknown of getting a job (as I said to Karrie, right now this hypothetical job is at best a complete unknown and at worst a repeat of my job at The Firm). And looking to see what is out there doesn't commit me to anything, so what is there to lose? Maybe having an idea of what the job would entail, where I would work, and who my co-workers would be will make the decision easier.
3. Knowing What You Don't Want is Half The Battle. Karrie also reminded me of how much we have learned since we were law students. Karrie and I met several years ago when we were both summer associates, and we have been friends ever since. We took barbri classes together, we started at The Firm on the same day, and we went through the process of becoming lawyers together. Sometimes I wonder if I made the right decision to go to law school, and I always have to answer yes because I met Brian there. Same thing with The Firm. I would never undo the decision to go there because I gained Karrie as a friend. And it is amazing to think about how much we have learned, about law, about working as a lawyer, and about ourselves. Knowing all this, I am better able than I realize to choose the right job for me (should I decide to get a job).
4. Flattery Feels Good. Karrie told me I was smart. She's nice like that.
Also, happy belated birthday to my big brother (and by big, I mean older, but I also mean big. The guy is almost a foot taller than me.) Happy thirty-something Tom. And because I know how much you love precious moments: