Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Vile Little Creatures

I am in a murderous rage.

At mosquitoes. Black flies as well.

They fly in, unwelcome and unannounced, slowly sneaking their way up to me. Then they wait until the perfect moment, the moment where I can't defend myself because I am talking to Mocha, my friend, on the phone for the first time in a month since she left, or I am trying to drag Jekyll the dog away from my neighbor's newly poured concrete. THEN, they strike.

They bite me on the neck, on the arm, on the leg. I scream and swat, and then go in the house and pour water and salt on the bites in an effort to make the itching stop.

Yes, I know you think I am a drama queen. But really, it's probably worse for me than it is for you. Why? Because I am actually allergic to those mosquito bites.

Let's say I am bit on the arm. If I do one absent-minded little scratch, then my entire arm swells up. It truly is a sight to see.

Vile little creatures. I'm plotting their demise as you read this.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

P.S. #2

The irony of it all just struck me.

Look at the title of the previous two posts. Go on. Do it.

Yeah. "Can't You Just Stop?" right next to "Lie Like Broccoli." Oh, the irony.

Can't You Just Stop?

I need an off button on my brain.

My mom, my siblings, my family, my friends, even Vor--they were all concerned when they heard what my line of work was going to be. Working with children who have been neglected/abused/other? Sounds hard. How do you leave it at work? Doesn't it get to you? I have patiently explained that yes, sometimes I see terrible things, but sometimes I see truly beautiful and amazing things too. The beauty and joy in the end tend to stick in my head more than the pain.

Except. Except. The Indiana Supreme Court has handed down a decision that makes me shudder. I understand it in the context of the case they were looking at, I guess. But oh, Lord, the precedent it sets.

Apparently, it's okay to beat your children with belts or extension cords now.

I've seen the damage that even good-intentioned parents cause. Why do we need to give another legal tool, legal defense, to those who would do this any ways?

I'm not exaggerating when I saw this precedent is horrible. I've already seen cases slip out from underneath us and others, all because of this great new defense. Lower courts are apparently a little wary in thumbing their noses at our Supreme Court. Imagine that.

It's a Saturday, and I'm working overtime in an effort to pull together as much ammunition I can for another little kid, one I don't want to get lost in this system, in this precedent.

Maybe tomorrow I will be able to not think about it.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Lie Like Broccoli

I. Am. A. Vegetable.

Really. That's what I was yesterday. I try to tell myself that it is rest in anticipation of the oncoming crazy week (trial, hearing, trial, hearing, hearing, conference, hearing, conference, trial...). Or maybe it's because of last week (ditto).

But really. I think I am just a vegetable. I watched about four hours worth of West Wing episodes, and I plan on repeating about half of that tonight.

Lie like broccoli. Sleep like sausage. Rest like ricotta. Yawn like yams.

Okay, I'll stop now.

Friday, June 13, 2008

How Wide is Your Balance Beam?

This has been a crazy week. Insane. Nutty. Intense. Long.

And it has made me crazy. Certifiably. One fry short of a Happy Meal. Not the brightest crayon in the box. And so on.

Vor, once he takes the bar exam, will be taking the big firm job, doing the technical patent work that is over my head. You know--those firm jobs that we hear about, and as lawyer and law students, are supposed to covet, yet dread because of the long hours.

Since I never coveted said position, I went into public interest, saving the world, one child at a time. I thought, we thought, both of us cannot be in a big firm and the hours it demands.

So why, why, was I the one at work for twelve hours yesterday?

Don't get me wrong, it was an awesome day. But man, was I crabby this morning. I'm just fortunate that today was a slow day, and that I got to leave a bit early. This has concerned me slightly; part of the reason why I went into public interest (a small part, to be sure) is the idea I had that I would have more flexible hours. I mean, someday, I want kids. I don't want to give up my career though. I really do believe that both can be done; you just have to find the balance.

Maybe that's still true. Maybe I'm not seeking the balance right now because I know I don't have to. Maybe I'm avoiding the balance because I know, as a newbie, I have to throw myself into this, heart, body, and soul. It's the only way to gain some ground.

For now, I will give it everything. That way, I can get the job permanently. I can carve out a niche, get some people to know me, and have my own network. Then, maybe then, I'll sit back a bit.

I'll learn to walk on the balance beam later.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sleepwalking World Champions

Sleepwalking runs in my family.

I have done this countless times, though my most memorable occasion involved waking up, outside, in three feet of snow, with my school uniform on at 1 a.m. I even had my lunch and books with me. I guess I was waiting for the bus. Equally memorable was the time my alarm went off. I thought I shut it off, got dressed, and ran out the door to crew practice. As I was "driving" to the river, my phone rang, and my coach screamed into the phone until I really woke up.

What is that? The reverse of sleepwalking? Realistic dreaming? Even once I was awake, I kept insisting to my coach that I was on my way, and I didn't know how I ended up back in bed.

My niece Prada yells about fireworks in her sleep, and my nephew Jeter has asked his Dad repeatedly where his space ship was. My other nephew, Jedi, has tried to use the laundry room for a bathroom, and has told me, insistently, that his mom told him it was the new bathroom.

Oh, did I mention that Prada fights in her sleep? Because she does. She must have learned those moves from Scout, my oldest nephew, because they sure are effective, and painful.

Blossom, Brick, and Squeaker have not shown signs of sleep walking yet. Maybe it only runs on the female side of the family.

I do think that one of my old team mates wins the prize on sleepwalking activity. In her sleep, she took a hairnet and put it over the toilet seat. When we found it in the morning, we connected the dots, because we had all heard her whimpering in her sleep about the toilet monster.

Apparently, hairnets keep the toilet monster where he belongs.

Can I Sleep on the Treadmill?

I am so tired.

Being in law school makes you tired. You get no sleep, your brain is constantly working, and there are endless demands on your time. But despite the dreariness that is law school, there is time.

Now, I know I just implied that there is never time in law school. Well, there is never a large block of time. But, you can make your own--schedule all your classes early or late, make it so that you have Fridays off, or create long breaks in your day.

Not so in the real world.

In law school, I could creep to the gym in the morning, or during my break at 1:00. I could go to the gym at 2:00 in the morning if I wanted to, because I didn't have class until noon. But now, I work from 7:45 to 5:00. Getting up early is just asking for me to fall asleep at the staff meeting, or at my desk, or worse, when the judge gets a little long winded.

Going when I get home... well... it's just not an attractive option.

I like to see Vor. I like to talk to him. And cutting out those few hours a day when we can talk is just not okay with me. So I walk Jekyll the dog with him, and it just isn't enough. I know this, and he knows this, and yet, we are at a stalemate. There isn't enough time in the day.

It's not like I'm one of you lucky people for whom a nice sweaty walk is enough, or a good round of yoga or pilates. Nope. My body is still used to high intensity activity, and that is the kind of activity it demands. Worse than that, my mind demands constant interaction, thought, and reaction--the kind of thing you get from a complicated team sport, where you are constantly shifting and adjusting to what others are doing.

I need the mental and physical intensity. I am a junkie for it.

So tomorrow morning, I will drag myself to the gym. As I will the day after that. I will keep going there, until we have enough money and time to join a different gym, where I can find what I need.

In the meantime, I'm going to see how fast I can run in my sleep.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

That's Ms. Tofu to You!

Today was my first attempt with tofu.

It was smashing, if I say so myself. I had always sworn I would stay away from it, until some was snuck into my pad thai at a Thai restaurant. I thought, hmmm. Maybe not so bad after all! And then, I discovered it at the bottom of my miso soup when Vor and I were eating sushi. The clincher was opening my newest cookbook and seeing a recipe for chicken and tofu.

Perfect! In case the tofu sucks, the chicken is a backup. It was foolproof. And yes, it was delicious. At least, I thought so. Vor will have to tell me later, as he has crashed on the recliner chair and is determinedly sleeping through the wonderful aroma filling the house.

I couldn't wake him for the life of me though, he looks so peaceful. I also happen to know how tired he is--we've still had crazy thunderstorms going on, and last night was no exception. Between the thunder clapping and lightening flashing and basement potentially and semi flooding and Jekyll the dog getting up and running around and the street becoming a river once again, there was little sleep to be had.

You know what he needs to wake up and have energy to finish the day?

TOFU!