I grew up watching Law & Order. I fell in love with the show because of the big reveals in court. Of course there was some shocking detail that nailed the evildoer to the wall. Guilty! Justice served! I joined debate team and Woman in Law club. I happily checked the prelaw box of my college applications. I didn’t even celebrate when I was accepted to every law school that I applied to. I never doubted my path to success. Where ever success was I was going to head in that direction.
I hated law school. No worries. Hating law school was that small piece of pain right before you accomplish something. Like the thigh burn before completing those twenty six miles of a marathon. I had outlets. Before a demanding study session I crocheted a few lines of doubles on the blanket for my nephew. During Christmas break I built a coffee table out of used wine bottles or crafted a mosaic design on an end table.
I finally reached that promise land paved with gold and accomplishment. I was recruited by one of those firms with a million partner names that forces a cumbersome abbreviation. I admit it took some months for the shininess associated with this lifestyle I had worked so hard for to dim. I didn’t understand why my feet hurt after hours of stiletto stomping around the office. Did Sex in the City Miranda ever have gripping, aching feet? She work Manolos. I didn’t understand why I wanted home cooked meals even though I could afford take out. Why did I continue to make furniture even though I could afford to purchase any home décor I wanted? Where was my time? Where was all of the relaxing and enjoying life that this tax bracket entitled me to? I was tired of hiding my tattoos and avoiding the magenta hair dye at the beauty supply store.
After a year of lawyering I told my mom about the change I wanted to make. She scoffed, “Do you really think you can switch from corporate attorney to interior designer just like that? You owe $195,000 in student loans.”
I wish research about my career path involved more than a television show. I don’t know how to get out of this…