Back when I did medical malpractice work, a partner once told me that doctors and lawyers don’t understand each other because doctors spend their whole careers being told they’re right, while lawyers spend their whole careers being told they’re wrong. At the time I brushed it off, thinking that doctors and lawyers don’t understand each other (especially my kind of lawyer), because we sue them, and people don’t like being sued. But the part about spending your whole career being told you’re wrong stuck with me. It still sticks with me.
No one likes the litigators. Not just because some make bad commercials, or some represent unpopular positions, or because they operate in a very nuanced world that the public by and large does not understand (this is my diplomatic way of saying that the comments on any internet news article discussing lawsuits makes my hair go gray). We all spend every day explaining, justifying, and being misunderstood. The whole career is adversarial. Even if you start the day feeling on top of the world, it wears away through the hours. By the end of the day, I might as well go eat worms.
Sometimes I just want to be liked. Instead of someone fighting with me, for someone just to be happy with me.
I needed to be liked today. So today, when we got home, spoiled dinner be damned, I gave my kid a bowl of chocolate ice cream. And then she asked for another. So I gave her another.
She liked me. And it felt good.