Musings of a brown girl who practices law while mommying and trying to stay sane
I guess I should start my first blog post with an introduction. I am Erin — a 40-something civil defense litigator by day and everything else by night. That is, I am “Mommy” to two amazing boys, only child to Addie (the prototypical black mama I love dearly but of whom I am still afraid), a wannabe fitness fanatic, lover of all things pop culture, proud member of the Beyhive, a sucker for rom-coms, a true Leo, and, now an aspiring blogger.
I have watched enough millennials do this blogging thing to know that there is definitely an untapped niche for what I have dubbed — the “Auntie Set.” We are settled in our careers, already been married (at least once), and no longer obsessed with the ticking of our biological clocks — at least not as it relates to trying to get pregnant. We are old enough to have actually cried real tears when Biggie and Tupac were killed, yet, still young enough to try the #Savagechallenge because, well, Meg is life. We have enough life experience to know that we don’t know it all and we no longer care as much that we don’t. As a proud “Auntie,” I hope that my metaphorical “nieces” will find some value (or comic relief) in the messages that I share.
Why is my blog called “Legal Fitness, Etc.?” I definitely wanted to incorporate what I do in my 9-5 into this personal account of who I am. In the legal field, the term “fitness” usually refers to one’s competence to perform at a certain capacity (physically or mentally) or compliance with an applicable standard —i.e., an item is “fit” for a particular purpose. As a practicing attorney and a divorced mom of two, I will frequently share my struggles with trying to stay “fit” — again mentally and physically — for the many purposes I serve in my capacities as mom, lawyer, daughter, and friend. Writing keeps me mentally fit; working out keeps me sane. I hope that by incorporating fitness into this blog, it will also keep me accountable. The “etc.” part gives me enough leeway to also share my musings about the practice of law, pop culture, politics, fashion, the Kardashians, or whatever else is on my mind that day. And, also, just plain “Legal Fitness” was already taken. 😉
I have now been practicing law for over 20 years. During most of that time, I have been the only black attorney in my office and one of few in my area of practice. Finding and building a network of other women in my profession, particularly women of color, has not been easy. However, once found, cultivating that network was necessary. These are the women that will know a reliable hairstylist who can do a blowout during your lunch hour or what summer camps to enroll your children in to insure diversity and inclusiveness. It is important for me to share the whys and hows of building your own network. While I am sure my experiences aren’t particularly extraordinary, they do provide me with a unique perspective on managing personal and professional challenges throughout different stages of life.
Why am I blogging? Well, if there is one thing I have learned from the internet, it is that EVERYTHING has already been done. Do you ever google some obscure thought and when you type it in the search field, the exact same search auto-populates before you can finish your sentence? That tells me two things: (1) we are not alone – clearly, someone has had this exact same thought/concern/experience before you did; and (2) if no. 1 is true, the virtual sharing of my own experiences might help someone else. Gospel songstress, Mahalia Jackson, wrote, “If I can help somebody in a word or song . . . then my living will not be in vain.” ❤ I’m just trying to help somebody else.