Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Making it Better... and a bit on marriage

After hearing the wailing sound I made while checking my secured transactions grade last night, JP took note and and brought me home a few surprises last night - chocolate cake, a dozen roses, and a very sweet card. (He's a keeper!)

The best thing about 1L was that we got married a few weeks before it began. That excitement, love, and additional dimension to my now dimension-less existence, kept 1L from being the worst year of my life. There were times when I was definitely depressed. However, I had JP to go home to every night- to remind me there was SO much more to life than law (it was alarmingly easy to forget that when you're in the law library for way too many hours a day). I remember talking (ok, crying) to my mom on the phone during the spring quarter and saying if it wasn't for JP, I probably would have quit and gone home. He ran errands, cleaned, cooked, gave me pep talks, and didn't freak out when the rational, relatively unemotional woman he married became a weepy, self-doubting mess. (I've since returned to my normal self.)

I've been thinking a lot lately about marriage and the roles we play in it- especially with the baby coming this summer. The traditional roles in marriage are something I've always feared. While I was home for Christmas my mom kept saying how worried she was about me trying to be a law student and a new mom. About how the 2 years she worked after I was born were so hard- she would hate waking up on Saturday because it meant a day full or errands and cleaning. What I couldn't explain to her is that my marriage is fundamentally different from hers (while my parents' very happy marriage is something I've always hoped for, there are parts of it that wouldn't work for me)- JP goes to the grocery store, he cooks, he cleans, he runs errands, he secretly enjoys shopping for clothes with me- he doesn't see any of those chores as "mine". It's something I can thank my mother-in-law for. She has always had a career and JP really doesn't see gender roles the way I feared (and constantly talked about leading up to our marriage); it was always understood I would have a career and that we would work together as equals in raising our family. His mom thinks nothing of me continuing on my plan to be a lawyer, whereas mine is probably worried sick about my "inevitable" hospitalization for exhaustion.

I think what a female attorney told me at a lunch last year is so true- she said it was important to her that her daughters see her working, but it was even more important for her sons.

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