Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Yes, I'd like some cheese with my WHINE . . .

So, reduced schedule. Remember that post? About how hopeful I was that the reduced schedule could work for me, even though its failed so many many lawyer-mamas before me? Today, I'm a bit discouraged. Here's why. Last month, mandatory training at work. 40 hours of mandatory training that does NOT count toward my billables. This month, I'm slammed. Slammed. So much so in fact, that I'd resigned myself to working on my Tuesdays that I'm supposed to be off. And we had a team meeting today, so I would have had to go in anyway, so at least I'd resigned myself to that in advance. But when the email went out about the team meeting asking our available times, I replied, "Tuesdays are supposed to be my day out of the office, but I'll come in. The earlier the better." So, of course, the meeting gets scheduled for the afternoon, and we only have childcare until 3:30 on Tuesdays SOOOOOOOOOOOO I had to leave the meeting early. And, I walked out thinking that of course NO ONE GIVES A FLYING F that I came in on my supposed day off. No one is thinking, "wow, she went on a reduced schedule, but look at that commitment, coming in on her day off!" Nope, they all just think, "she really just walked out of the meeting at 3. She must not be committed. Look what happens when star lawyers have babies." Now, I might be exaggerating. Maybe. But I guarantee you at least ONE of the lawyers in that meeting thought that . . . and it just frustrates me to feel like I can't do enough to show my f'in commitment because there's always more that COULD be done. GRRRR.

And to top that off, I've been assigned like a gazillion depositions (great for my career, good experience, etc.) . . . all of which will happen in the next two months, and none of which are in my damn state. Me not likey that.

Now, after all this whining, I should say that last week, when I talked to the partner I work with about all of Sam's appointments, the stuff going on in our lives, etc., I said, "I just feel like I never have 100% to give to work; its not who I am, and I constantly feel like I'm cheating my team and behind the ball." He said, "I've never once thought that about you, so you need to let yourself off the hook."

Maybe. But it still doesn't take the sting out of having to walk out of the meeting early. The meeting I went to on my SUPPOSED day off. Or the sting of feeling like the other associates hate me because I get less work. Sure doesn't feel like less. End of rant. Good night.


Proto Attorney said...

I'm sure I would feel exactly the same way in your position, but keep in mind, you're now getting paid less than the other associates are at your level to work that reduced schedule, and they know that, so they shouldn't feel any sort of resentment against you. If they want to work less, they can take a paycut too. I'd say that the next time they want to schedule a meeting on your day off, you simply reply with an "I'm unavailable that day" and leave it at that. If the partner you report to thinks you're doing great, that's what matters.

Is your schedule able to be more flexible? Like, if something comes up on Tuesday, can you take Wednesday off instead? That might not work for you when it comes to childcare, but just a suggestion.

Momttorney said...

Yes, normally, very flexible. Which is why I stay here. . . however, right now, unfortunately, I'm so slammed that the ONLY flexibility is I get to choose which 12 hours of the day I work
:o( This is just a hard career to make "part-time" . . . we have so many deadlines that are imposed externally (by the court) and when the work has to be done, it has to be done. . . we are also very short-staffed on my cases MOSTLY BECAUSE EVERYONE QUITS before they hit "senior associate level . . . . " hmmmmmmmm.

Thanks for your comment:o)

Elisa said...

Casual observation from someone totally outside of both the attorney loop and the mom loop....

Who gives a rat's ass what the other associates think? What matters at the end of the day is what your boss thinks (and he clearly thinks highly of you) and FAR MORE IMPORTANTLY, what Sammie B thinks! Such adoration has never been witnessed before!

You have SO much on your plate, but still manage to put Sammie B first and still get your job done and still go to tons of dr's appts and worry about your nanny's mom? I think you have the heart of an angel and the strength of an army.

much love and adoration of my own,