Sunday, February 18, 2007

Law School and Having Children

On February 15, my wife and I welcomed a new baby boy into our family. Samuel Adam is our fourth child, and is a fantastic blessing to us! We are so pleased that he is healthy, seemingly happy and at home with us.

Our two older daughters (6 and 7) are enamoured with him, and are proving to be real helpers with Samuel. Our other son (2) is also very infatuated, and has adjusted well, although it has only been three days.

I know that a lot of you have children, or are planning on having children, and are wondering what it will be like once you hit law school, or once you hit your legal career.

I had two children for my first two years of law school, and our third was born in my third year. I remember being very worried about my schedule in my first year, and feeling guilty a lot when I was studying so hard, working part time, and trying to keep our household in order. But, things smoothed out after about 6 months. I started giving myself permission to take time off from law studies, and to make special time for my girls.

By the time my son was born, I had a very set routine and felt like I could afford to give as much time as necessary towards helping my wife with the new baby, and with my other children.

I heard about a man who was a few years ahead of my who had eight children when he started law school. I think that would be very heavy! A few of my friends had babies, or had wives who had babies while in law school. It worked out. Nobody blamed their babies for bad exams. I had one friend who had two babies while in law school. She shifted to a part-time schedule, and ended up doing really, really well.

Now that I am a lawyer, I have started to feel more guilty about time not spent with my children. But, because I am my own boss, I try to give myself permission to have time off whenever I think my children need more attention. I am going to take most of the next week off - I'll only go in to put out genuine fires - and will ease back to work over the following two weeks. One thing I have learned is that babies are only babies for a very short time.

One last thought - never put off having children for your career. It is never worth it to choose the latter before the former. In other words, work to live. Don't live to work.

2 comments:

Lori said...

Congratulations!!

Essien said...

Great post Adam! Thanks. Mazal Tov on your new child. I have 3 (Eilat, Eyal and Ytai) and am thinking a lot about this issue as I comtemplate law school. I'm partly petrified to go into law school because of the time away from them that it will cause.

With my wife also in school, it'll be a real tug-o-war for study time, at least in the beginning.

Here-here on the kids and timing final comment - definitely makes ME feel better for having children now.