Wednesday, April 22, 2009

becoming a lawyer's wife.

The lawyer's wife and the lawyer. Both semi-uncomfortable in their roles.

The past several days have brought plenty of milestones to my life: my first paid speaking gig, my first corporate credit card (!), and my first professional public recognition, just to name a few. But all of these pale in comparison to the bridge I crossed last night: the bridge to becoming a lawyer’s wife.

It hasn’t really ever been a dream of mine to be so closely associated with a career much disdained by the rest of the world, but when I married Jordan, I knew it was coming with the territory. Still, nothing could have prepared me for my abrupt initiation into Jordan’s world this week.

See, my oh-so-talented husband made the moot* court team, which is a pretty great honor (as I was reminded multiple times last night—never by my humble husband, of course).

Jordan’s newfound glory meant a whirlwind of events, including a moot court banquet. And boy, did I learn fast that this whole “lawyer’s wife” thing is going to take some serious practice. Some lessons learned:

LESSON #1: Lawyers and law students marry each other. Jordan and I are the exception to the rule, making small talk pretty… small. Solution for next year: Become a law student. Or brush up on law school terminology.

LESSON #2: In a friend’s eloquent words, most law students are “social climbers.” I prefer the term snooty. Or snotty. Either applies. Solution for next year: None.

LESSON #3: Law students really enjoy talking about themselves and their own accomplishments, even if they know you have no idea what they’re talking about. Solution for next year: Perfect the nod and smile. It works better than the eye roll.

LESSON #4: Around these here parts, an Alabama accent sounds just like a Tennessee accent, a Tennessee accent just like a Texas accent, etc. So Jordan’s new nickname, “The Texan” makes perfect sense (to everyone except me). Solution for next year: Ask Jordan for his nicknames in advance to avoid confusion, or use a personal nickname to drive everyone else crazy, i.e., "Billy Joe, you are so funny."

LESSON #5: Dragging your spouse from group to group is an art form. One at which Jordan and I are both terrible. Solution for next year: Practice holding two minute conversations and a more subtle “drag and pull.”

LESSON #6: In the law school world, continuing your education is more respected than finding a job. You can imagine the looks I got. Solution for next year: Determine just how much money we’ll have saved by taking turns at receiving our respective educations, then shove it in everyone’s faces.

LESSON #7: My husband is not a typical law student and will not make a typical lawyer (praise the Lord). Solution for next year: None. Except pray that it stays this way forever.

And just to give you a taste of law school students' perspective, here's a glimpse into a conversation that actually took place at our table:

Law Student #1: “I mean, when you’re a law student, people say you’re smart. When you’re a lawyer, people say you’re a butthead.** What happens?"

Law Student #2: “I know! I mean, excuse me for getting criminals off the streets and making your city safer!”

Um, right. Because I’m sure you all are going to become district attorneys. Not to mention the fact that I’m pretty sure our underpaid police force does most of the “cleaning up” you're referring to. It’s nice, though, that you’re so confident in your skills.

At least I've already perfected a valuable lesson: keep your mouth shut. But, oh... I have a lot to learn.

* Fake.

** Language censored to protect the innocent.


Anonymous said...

WOW, A Lawyers wife. Think about the wife of an Investment Professional during the last year. The International market has been down nearly fifty percent. Everybody wants to know what happened to my investment/retirement? I gave you $100,000.00 and know you say it's worth only $50,000.00. Is everybody a crook on Wall Street?

Anonymous said...

I know it's now not know.......

Anonymous said...

Anonymous is Uncle R

annie said...

I assumed it was Uncle R by all that investment jargon... I guess better a lawyer's wife than an investor's... Thanks for the perspective! :)

Jessica said...

i should do a post on what it's been like becoming a preacher's wife. it's a touchy subject. it's strange to try to think of what to write based on who might be reading your blog or who might read it in the future while still being honest.

congrats on your first paid speaking engagement!!!

jenna said...

hahaha!!! The ** part made me laugh very loudly!!

Jordan Jones said...

Wow...I like it. Very nice perspective into the world of law. :) Just file the memories from last night (and from next year's banquet) for a great chapter for your future book.

Weezie said...

Ha - yeah. I'm a lawyer's wife, too...and an interior designer. So I have been privy to (ie, observer) all of those convos. I love when his colleagues say, "Oh, I wish I had time to pick out new drapes, too!"

I wish I had this list a few years ago, I would have been much more prepared for my future!

Dad said...

But... were you proud to be a part of your husband's world? I just bet he was proud to have you with him!! But you made me LOL. Very good!

Anonymous said...

Wow, I was playing online looking for insight on what it will be like next year when my husband starts law school. Your blog just scared me! I don't think I am going to like all this...

annie said...

Don't worry too much, Anonymous... It's not all bad! Just takes some getting used to! You'll be just fine! :)