Thursday, November 18, 2010

Tidings of Comfort and Joy #ShareKleenex

Tis the season, you know, for singing songs with heartfelt messages, baking goodies to share with people we care about, and thinking about how fortunate we are. In this season, my comfort and joy comes, predictably, from my family.

But probably not for the reason you're thinking. My family brings me comfort, because they love me despite my flaws. Even when I'm falling down in my jobs (as a wife, as a mother, or one of the jobs I have outside the home), my family loves me. There's great comfort in the unconditional love of family. It gives you a certain freedom to attempt to fly. If I didn't have my family firmly in my corner, I never would have had the courage to go to college as a non-traditional student. I couldn't have managed finishing law school while pregnant, and I certainly couldn't have handled going into labor during the bar exam without them. So truly, they are my biggest comfort.

They are also my biggest joy. Whether it's the joy of surviving a day of toddler-wrangling, hearing Keep's name called as an elected student for student council, or watching Bogey finally beginning to unlock the reading skills he's been working so hard on, they are my joy.

Beyond that, watching my kids grow into amazing young people is my joy. Knowing that long after Mr. LJD and I have left this planet, they will be here, demonstrating our values and walking through life with the love and caring we've instilled in them. It is my greatest comfort to know that no matter what mark I leave on earth outside these four walls, my three kids will always be my legacy.

Although I've talked predominantly about my kids, Mr. LJD is my comfort and joy as well. When the world is too scary and I don't think I have what it takes to make it, Mr. LJD is there to lift me up. When I start to slack off or slip, he's there to hold me accountable and push me to succeed. He's more of a feminist than I, which I appreciate because it frees me up for pursuing the things I'm good at, as opposed to things a woman “should” be good at.

More than anything else, I find comfort and joy in living surrounded by people who make me the best I can be even while they love me when I'm not. It doesn't get much better than that my friends. Which is why I truly mean every word of the songs we'll be singing this holiday season. Glad tidings of comfort and joy indeed. 

To bring comfort to others is another simple way to find comfort and joy in my own life. It doesn't take a lot of money or special talent to bring comfort. In my time as an attorney, I've learned that sometimes simply being willing to touch someone's hand brings a comfort so profound there are no words to express it. Many of my clients are seeing me on their worst day ever. There's a scary judge, an intimidating prosecutor, an angry victim, an indignant witness, etc. Many are facing horrible loses in their personal lives (even if it's through their own poor choices, everyone deserves comfort and dignity!). Being willing to give a handshake an eye contact to a defendant, a gentle hand on the shoulder of a juvenile who is in care, or a smile for a defendant who has spent the last few days/weeks/months in lock up makes a tremendous difference. 

Because my family brings me comfort, I am strong enough to offer comfort to others!

(and in a sidenote, speaking of comfort, did you know you can send a little slice of comfort to someone you know by sending them some Kleenex? Check it out here ) 

I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Kleenex blogging program, making me eligible to get a $40 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here

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