My work as a mom is never done…

I have heard my 83 year old mother, affectionately known to me as, Joanie, declare that as a mother, “we never stop worrying about our children.” Since she had 6 children, and I have only 3, Joanie is convinced I worry much less. The reality is I try not to worry. Why put negative energy out into the universe? I am very busy, so adding time to my calendar each day to worry about the kids is simply not productive. Instead, I keep tabs on what is going on in their life through Facetime and calls, think about them, and send positive energy their way. And of course I continue to stalk their social media platforms for proof that they remain good kids that I raised.

Mary and Kids

For example, Claire is in “Tundra Town” also known as Boston. I try not to think about the dorm roofs collapsing, that is until Joanie triggers the thought. “You know Mary, roofs in Boston are collapsing, are you concerned about Claire?” “No, Mom, I don’t spend energy on it. I suggest you don’t either!” But then Claire calls having just taken a plunge down 4 icy steps on her tiny little tail bone. She was calling for mom comfort. Having taken this similar plunge down only one step many years ago, I immediately extended empathy, “Geez, that takes your breath away!”

Once we knew she was OK, we moved on to the stuff that does keep seniors and their parents awake at night — will there be a job offer, and will it make them happy? So I spend some time helping Claire down off the ledge by listening, and offering some advice. Her angst was coming from a few directions: where will she live, work, money management, and weather, but unlike when she was 14, 15 and 16, Claire is doing such a better job listening to ol’ Mom, and my counsel. I reminded Claire that she has always had a great work ethic, drive, focus and talent. She will do fine. Plus, she does have a preliminary offer, and is simply waiting for it to be finalized. Claire is off the ledge!

Earlier in the week, I received incredible career news from my son, Brian. He had completed his final PGA test, and is now officially a Class A PGA Golf Professional. I do not believe you will see him on the golf circuit anytime soon, as he is dedicated to the career of a Club & Teaching Pro. I do understand he will have many opportunities to play in PGA Tournaments on more of a regional level. He is looking forward to this opportunity as well. You have been following his progress through these blogs over the years, so I decided I needed to share this exciting news.

brian swings

Brian will do fine. Meanwhile, life in Nashville is not bad. He played golf last Sunday, and had the audacity to say it was cold at 48 degrees!

I thought the career coaching for the week was done, until Aidan called the other night. Aidan is a junior at Brockport in the area of Finance. He is so very smart and numbers savvy, and all with a cool sense of calm and confidence. His question was about how to go about securing an internship. We talked through ideas he had; I offered some up; and suggested he send me his resume for review. We then talked about places to apply and other experiences to look for in terms of networking. Aidan is all business, “OK, Mom that sounds good.” Little to no emotion. Aidan was never on the ledge, so we said goodbye and “I love you!”

As I reflected back on the intense, inspiring and exciting conversations with all three, I could not help but feel a sense of pride in each of them in terms of their commitments to their future careers. My final piece of advice to each of them — find a mentor, find several mentors as you grow into your careers. My Dad, Richard, was one of my early mentors, and always there for counsel. This is one of our role as parents, but it is also our role as more seasoned professionals in our respective fields. We can be mentors to those around us that we work with each day, or perhaps someone we see across a table at a meeting. The MCBA created the Mentor for a Moment, a program to assist younger attorneys in quickly finding answers to specific questions. So this is another reminder that we have a long, willing and enthusiastic group of mentors that are ready to take your calls. I encourage you to take advantage of this program, it could be priceless. There is no shame in asking questions, requesting some guidance and counsel. We have ALL been there in need of advice at some point in our career, and for me, I still call on my stash of mentors.

If you are a willing mentor, and listed on the website, in the program, just a quick reminder, please call or email back when you receive a call from a mentee. This program only works when everyone is taking part, and being responsive. If you are in need of a mentor, please reach out to Liz Novak at lnovak@mcba.org with the area of practice you need help with, and she will be sure to give you a couple of names. Another great place to do some informal mentoring, and “scoping for mentors” is coming up on Thursday, February 19th, when we convene at City Grill for the February BarSTOP, starting at 5 p.m. It really is a great place to catch up with friends and colleagues, while making some new ones. Hope to see you there!

Thanks for checking in and stay warm,

– Mary

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