Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Rollin' On

I'm way too tired to make much sense tonight, but I feel like I need to post, because I have a lot on my mind.

I've been a miserable person to live with lately. I'm fully aware of that. I've been terrible to Mr. B, and he doesn't deserve it.

Now for the excuses. I'm tired. Have I mentioned that before? I know I say it out loud multiple times a day. I'm sure many of my family/friends get sick of hearing it. But, I NEED to whine a little. I could not name the last time that I put my bean in bed, and either hung out and watched TV, hung out with the hubs, or went straight to bed myself. Instead, Bean goes to bed, and I work for 2 or 3 more hours. Every.single.night. And, B goes to bed each night at 9 or 9:30, and its not logical or fair, but I feel MAD at him because he gets to sleep. And, he's also training for a marathon. I'm super super proud of him. But lately, I resent that training time too . . . simply because he has it. That's not fair either. And I picked my career (and I like it. I like WHAT I do. I like my cases, and I like my firm). Problem is, this mama/lawyer thing is just a tough one to balance. I wish I could say, "I haven't been to bed before midnight in weeks, but I'm billing like there's no tomorrow." But that's not the case. I'm just eeking out "average" hours. I don't like being average, particularly when I FEEL like I'm working so freaking hard. But, my days start later -- our nanny arrives at 8:30, so I'm not at work, billing until at least 9:30, often later b/c I do other stuff before I get going. Then, if I want to leave work to be home for dinner with Sammie B, I have to head out by 5:30 or 6:00 at the latest, earlier if we have a PT session (which we do on Mondays). So, that only leaves 8 POSSIBLE hours in which I can bill . . . and of course, like any lawyer -- any person -- SOME of my time each day is not productive, and some is productive but not billable. So, that leaves a few hours of billable work to do each night . . . just to eek out "average." I KNOW my priorities are where they should be -- Sam is No. 1 -- and I don't feel like I'm slighting her at all. I'm at most PT sessions. I'm here for bedtime 99% of the time. I'm the first face she sees every morning when she wakes up. And, that's how I want it to be. But what I'm struggling with is feeling like I might be just "average" at work.

But, I also know its not fair to my B for him to constantly fall to the bottom of the list, or for me to resent his job and its wonderful hours. B has always stood by and been my biggest supporter and fan. And he still is. I need to get over myself and be the same for him. Pre-bean, I thought that I could cut this lawyer/mom thing b/c B had great hours, so he could pick up the slack that I would leave. I didn't know that that wouldn't be good enough for me . . . that I'd WANT to be at every appointment, every bedtime, etc. That it would break my heart to miss those things (and of course, I didn't know, couldn't know, how many appointments there'd be).

But, I'm going to try out an alternative work schedule -- assuming its approved by the firm. I'll be responsible for less hours at the end of the year, but will get paid less. I'm HOPING that this allows me a little more time to just enjoy life, my husband, and my Bean. I'm HOPING that this allows me to FEEL like there's enough hours in the day, week, and month for me to be better than just average at work.

I have so many mixed emotions about this. These sort of "part-time" (which by any normal occupation's standards, our part-time programs still amount to full-time hours) don't work for everyone. But, I hope to give it a shot, and I hope to make it work. Not to mention the fact that I do somehow feel like I'm failing (just a little bit). When I was on maternity leave, and ran into lawyers out in the world, they would all say, "are you going back full-time?" with such disbelief. I wanted to show that it COULD be done. Its silly. I have to make the best choice for me and my family. And, truth be told, it CAN be done. But, right now, it doesn't have to be . . .

I stayed up super late last night working so that I could end a little early today and head out to run some errands with Sammie B. We stopped and had a late lunch together, and I snapped the picture above. Tuesdays have a lot of posssibility for the two of us if everything works out with the alternative work-schedule (which will mean that Tuesdays are a half-day for me and that I work from home those days). This is entering some uncharted territory . . . many women have tried part-time lawyer programs and not been able to make it work. Many have found that they either lose out on opportunity or end up working 100% for less pay. I'm going into this with eyes wide open, determined to make it work. So, here goes . . .

In other news, Sammie B's one-year appointment went fab. Dr. was pleased with her progress, not alarmed by the 6-month gross motor score on her developmental tests -- she said she's not concerned as long as we keep moving forward and seeing progress, which we are. Whew. Sammie B is a tall glass of water -- 90th percentile for length; 60th for weight. And, getting FIVE teeth. All at once! Poor little Bean.

And, our last two PT sessions have been PHENOMENAL. Friday, in front of me, B, and the PT, Sammie B rolled SIX times - on her own. The first time, we all just sat and stared at her, totally wide-eyed, and the PT said, "I think she's rolling." When she finished, we all screamed and just were so excited. And she did it several more times:o) She rolled more over the weekend, and today!!! And, yesterday in PT, she pushed herself up into the cobra position and pulled her own legs under her into the crawling position -- all HUGE. Bean keeps moving forward every single day. We all do . . .

Sammie B is rollin' and I'll keep rollin' too.


Elisa said...

Wow! Awesome news on the bean rolling on her own! I'll bet she'll be doing it all over the place with the warm reception you guys gave her! So cool! That kid is mobile. Look out world!

As for billable hours.... they are there. They will always be there. Sammie B's babyhood will not always be here. Enjoy it! So you make a little less dough and don't reach your previous level of "success" as soon as you wanted. So what? We are human. We grow, we evolve, we adjust. You have the rest of your life to toil away on billable hours. I'm glad today you chose to trade some of those to play with Sammie B instead. :)

Love you!

Sarah said...

Allison, I've thought and felt much of what you just wrote about. I wish I had the magic words or some great advice, but I don't. I just hope for you that you can find what works for you! It's definitely not easy. I wish you all the best. Just remember that you are one person, there are only 24 hours in a day, and you work so hard! Don't be hard on yourself; you are very successful! Good luck!