Thought I wanted to be a lawyer…

claire-cowling

Veronica’s Story:

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…

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