Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Gas Guzzlers

There are so many stories about people trying to find a way to conserve gas so as not to have to pay the $4+ at the pump. So you may ask yourself - what are the Esq.'s doing?

I think we are making up for the fuel you have saved - so, thanks!

Thanks to a difficult work situation these last 2 months and feeling generally run down because of pregnancy Husband and I are taking separate cars into Boston every day. We used to commute in together and still do occasionally. But I just can't always get myself up at 6:15 am to get to work by 7:30 (which is when Husband wants to be in). No one starts looking for me at work until around 10 am so I can go in late. Also, there have been a few afternoons that I felt so destroyed all I wanted to do was go home and nap but couldn't because Husband had the car (and no way to get Husband if I took it).

To top it off my work garage is $34 a day (!) and only gets paid for if I'm at work until after 8 pm which I'm trying not to be (see exhaustion above). I guess we have to get used to it since this is how it will be when I go back to work next winter.

I got an email yesterday from a junior associate 1 week away from her due date working 12 hour days to close a deal. How unacceptable is that? We constantly tell our supervising attorneys that we can't work those hours (I can't and I've got 8 weeks to go; heck I couldn't starting around week 25) but it is like shouting into the wind. It makes me want to bring in a doctor's note. In an attempt to fight back last night docs came in on my "rush" deal (that has been going on for 2 months) and I told the partner (who has been off the last 3 weekends) that I would be happy to layer in my comments on his in the morning - basically forcing him to do the markup. He sent it to me at 4:30 am and I started working on it at 7:30 am. Just in case you think I'm a slacker this is the 6th markup of this document and I've done my fair share. Now to shake off the guilt...(ever notice women often feel more guilty then men?)

I think that if the Firm wants me back (and I know they do) they should be treating me a little nicer before I go on leave. I will say with absolute certainty that this is my last deal. The last thing I want is to have to come into work after giving birth to organize my office and pass off client matters because I was too busy and gave birth early. It has happened to a few moms - especially the more senior you are.


Almostima said...

said with love: you are at the wrong firm.

Mommy, Esq. said...

I honestly think it is the difference between being a deal lawyer and being a litigator. All the folks I know at other Big Law NY firms have it much worse than me - always makes me happy to be at my Big Firm after I interact with an associate at another Firm.

T. said...

Public transportation is a wonderful happy thing. You should see how packed the bus has been over the last three weeks (the complete opposite of how it usually is after the kids get out of school) - from what I've heard from my fellow passengers, many of them are taking the bus for the very first time, after years and years of driving into the city. I love it.

I don't think it would work for you, given your schedule, but it could be an option for Husband.

Anonymous said...

No matter what firm you are at, lawyers (and I've found this applies to both men and women) are not the most understanding bunch of folks when it comes to working mothers. I am a senior associate at mid-sized firm practicing municipal bond law. While the partners I work for have actually been great about letting me work flexible hours (albeit with a few snarky comments here and there) they just can't seem to refrain from referring to my recent maternity leave as my "vacation."
Best of luck to you!

Anonymous said...

I agree on the transaction/litigation difference. I'm in a specialty practice at a large firm and do largely litigation, but when I occasionally get sucked into a corporate transactions, I'm amazed by the 24/7 availability expectation. I think you should definitely push back regarding demands now -- it's for your and the babies' health, so anyone who can't deal with that needs to suck it. I've seen a lot of biglaw moms who set their schedules so that they leave the office at a reasonable hour and log back in after the kids are in bed; I don't know how realistic that is in a transactional practice, but good luck!