Thursday, April 15, 2010

There and Back Again

I feel like I was gone for so much longer than 36 hours. Probably because yesterday seemed to run on for at least 35 of them. I'm starting to admit that maybe I can't quite do all that I think I can do and emerge unscathed- or at least without swollen feet.

I left the house at 7:00 a.m. for my 8:20 flight. I was a little concerned that someone might bug me about whether I should be flying, but nobody did. Maybe because my belly is so small and demure. All 31 pounds of it. The flight itself was fine, though I noticed my toes looked a little puffy by the end and my back was starting to ache like it was still bruised on the inside from its abuse over the weekend. Also of note during the flight, I decided that I need a Kindle. JP has been informed.

Once in Chicago everything was better. The weather was 75 degrees of blue skyed perfection. I cabbed it to my hotel, my smile growing with every recognizable exit between O'Hare and downtown. I know I go on and on about Chicago, but there's just something so wonderful about returning to a city where you loved to live- it's a satisfying blend of well-worn comfort, excitement, and nostalgia, and driving up Michigan Avenue made me feel happy from the inside out.

At the Four Seasons a very nice man at the front desk asked me how far along I was in my pregnancy and then informed me that I'd been upgraded to a King Suite. Great! I thought, I'll have a nice big king-sized bed to curl up in. But when I got to my room on the 43rd floor, this is what I found:

As it turns out, a "king suite" goes way beyond bed size. It has hallways, and multiple rooms, and two full bathrooms. I tried to sit in every chair before I left just so all the square footage would feel appreciated. I also used both showers- wouldn't want one to feel left out.

(Not pictured: the dining room, bar/kitchenette, conference room, and dressing room with giant mirrors and pedestal to stand on.)

It was by far the nicest hotel room I've ever been in in my life and suddenly I was very sad that I was only there for one night and that JP wasn't with me. But my day was fully booked so off I went to meet one of my best law school friends for lunch at Flatwater on the river. K looked fabulous as always, and it was all kinds of lovely to catch up with her in person while watching the river boats go by. After lunch I strolled my way up Michigan Avenue, stopping in the 4-story Gap that somehow always has things I want even though Gap almost never impresses me anywhere else. And because I was feeling very brave and a little giddy from all the Chicagoness around me, I bought a bathing suit. A non-maternity item made of nylon and spandex. It felt like a leap of faith, an act of supreme trust that I will one day (soonish) look like a regular, non-pregnant 27-year-old again. But it's a dark navy tankini, so it's a realistic leap, I hope.

After the shopping my feet were again looking puffy and my back was hurting and I realized I probably should have rested for a little bit, but it was time to change my clothes and head down to the law school for the recruiting event. I think I'll write about that separately, but it was fun because I love chatting with strangers and I really do like my firm and love my job. I was surprised by how nostalgic I felt when re-entering the halls of the law school for the first time since graduation. I never would have believed I'd feel that way 4 years ago when I was drowning and deflated in the middle of 1L Spring Quarter.

After 2.5 hours of standing up in heels, my back and feet were killing me. I headed to dinner with a good friend, my original inspiration for being a law school mama (she was a 3L when I was a 1L and had a baby during her 2L year). After dinner I got to sit down in my hotel room for approximately 15 minutes before I had to go down to the lounge to meet a 2L who is going to be a summer associate in our Houston office this summer. I did not at all feel like going down to talk firm-talk for another hour, but she was very nice and we ordered a survey of desserts that were all very good. Finally, at 10:30 I was able to take a shower and crawl into my big fluffy bed.

This morning consisted of taking a shower in the other shower, enjoying a delicious brunch at one of my favorite restaurants, and then cabbing it back to the airport. I was exhausted. I was sad to leave Chicago. I was happy to come home. And I was thrilled when Landon ran into the house, throwing himself at me and yelling "Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! I ate pizza!!" an hour later. It's good to be back.


  1. How fun! I actually feel vicariously nostalgic after that. :)

  2. Man, that suite is obscenely awesome for just one person! Wish I could've been there to help fill the rooms for you. :) Glad you had a great trip.

  3. Sounds like a great time. I hope to go back to the city this summer. I love visiting places that have meaning and hold good memories for me. Going back is like reclaiming a little peice of the past and revisiting the old you.

  4. Hi! I think I read your whole entire blog in one sitting - after googling "pregnant law student," of course - and then you posted this. I feel partly vicariously nostalgic with you and partly jealous that you're done! with law school! and now recruiting...

  5. That is the most awesome hotel room I've ever seen! Way to go! hahaha!

  6. Might be time for a career change for me. You stay in some amazing hotels! Looks like a fun trip! I was in Chicago for two nights last summer and loved it too. It would be hard to leave after living there, I'm sure!

  7. The best part is that because we have a negotiated corporate rate, that giant suite cost less than what JP and I paid to stay in a tiny hotel room in a not-nearly-so-nice hotel when we flew up for my law school graduation. If only we could use that corporate rate for personal travel...

  8. I reread and saw the "dressing room with giant mirrors and pedestal to stand on"


    You could get ready for the Oscars in that room (if the Oscars were in Chicago!)