Chapter 2, page 1

I pulled the last few seeds free of the pomegranate I'd been eating over the course of the last few days. A pin on Pinterest caught my eye. It was a quote to the effect of "We make plans. God laughs." If there was ever a quote to summarize this day, that would be it.

The day had started off regularly enough. It was the Immaculate Conception, which was a holy day in the Catholic church so I had planned to attend 12:10 mass. Not only was it a holy day but due to my finals schedule it was also my last chance to attend mass before my dad underwent bypass surgery on Monday. I just had to attend mass once more before the surgery. Life lately had been divided into "before I learned about the bypass" and "after I learned about the bypass."

Before I learned about the bypass, studying for finals had progressed as normal. I began to make plans to rent a car and drive home. I researched carefully, picked a company and priced out my options. The birds, the fish and my one plant that wasn't a cactus would come home with me in the rental.

The next day I learned that Dad was having surgery and in an instant everything changed. We booked a flight for me that afternoon. Since my last final was the day before surgery, I would fly home a mere 3 hours after finishing the semester. I couldn't exactly bring a fish or a plant on an airplane. Or could I? I supposed I could but it seemed like a terrible idea. The birds had flown before but it wasn't their favorite thing. More importantly it would cost me $125, which was barely less than the price of my ticket. I could buy 5 new parakeets for that price. I would never get rid of the birds though; for the past 4 years they had been the closest thing to children I had. I was grateful to an uncle for agreeing to watch Mugsy the fish. Unfortunately he and his family were going out of town for 3-4 days over the break. I was comfortable leaving the fish for that long without someone taking care of him but not the birds. I created a water globe from an old glass bottle so the plant was also taken care of. The globe was in the plant as a test run. If I needed to I could switch the soda bottle for a wine bottle. I just had to figure out the birds.

Aside from pet care, I had to accelerate all of my other plans. Everything suddenly seemed so much more urgent but in all honesty I had planned to use Sunday afternoon to do much of my packing and cleaning. Without that extra time I was having to move those two activities up in my schedule without compromising my final exams or my obligations to clinic. I must have been more worried about getting everything done than I had realized; Wednesday night I had dreamed I was packing for home. Nothing exciting or strange happened. I was just sitting on my living room floor, packing my big red suitcase.

The plan for Thursday had been simple enough: go to church, get lunch at the new Chipotle near my apartment, change into sweats and study the day away. So off to church I went. When I left mass I saw that I had a message from my doctor. I called the doctor back and we went over the results of my recent blood test. She wanted me to start a new medication so I altered my plans and headed to the pharmacy instead of home. The prescription took 20 minutes to fill and then it was back on the bus to my apartment. I fielded a phone call from mom, who was desperate to get our Christmas card ordered. A quick stop at Subway and I was home reviewing Christmas cards online with Mom.

After the Christmas card crisis was narrowly avoided I saw an email from the faculty advisor for a student organization I was involved in. I was serving as a community service chair for the organization and he wanted to discuss one of my projects in person. I stretched, responded to his email and headed into his office. Fifteen minutes later I was leaving the professor's office. After sending an email to the organization's president I spotted yet another email that brought exciting clinic-related news. I ran a few more errands that I'd needed to run; by 4:30 I was finally home.

How on God's green earth is it already 4:30? Where has this day gone? I really wanted to finish my immigration law outline today. Suddenly I wasn't so sure that was going to happen. Somehow I missed my first year of law school when all I cared about was finals at this time. I didn't miss being like the first years at the gym yesterday: so panicked about finals that they drilled flash cards while running on treadmills. The truth was two years ago I was a total wreck at this time. I had no idea what to do, what to expect and it all just overwhelmed me. My first year of law school had succeeded in scaring me to death.

Over the course of the past two and a half years school hadn't necessarily gotten easier. Instead it'd just become familiar. I was settled into a routine now: I knew how to study, how to read, etc. I had to admit, the Socratic method still scared the pants off me. I don't know if I would ever really be comfortable with being called on without warning and grilled on some portion of the reading in front of a 70 person class. Even if it still scared me, I'd resigned myself to a life where classrooms commonly involved the Socratic method. While second year had bored me to death, this year seemed hell bent on working me to death. Suddenly school was joined by job hunting, clinic, student organizations, Bar applications and internships. I was ready to start the next phase and be done with the educational phase of my life. I hadn't had a break from school since kindergarten and I was beyond ready to move on. However I didn't regret my decision to push straight through law school; I don't know if I could have finished if I had taken time off.

Thankfully I had much less outlining to do than I had previously believed and I was done in an hour. I was actually glad for the distractions of the day. I was able to get my work done along with a lot of other small tasks that needed to be taken care of before I left.  Next up was dinner, another coat of paint for Dad's Christmas present (Mom and Kara's were already finished) and a quick workout. The day was drawing to a close and not a moment too soon.

My Thursday had in no way been the Thursday I had told God it would be. As it turns out He had laughed at my plans and altered my course. That wasn't too surprising though; He tended to laugh at my plans and send me off in a different direction quite frequently. I set the pomegranate skin on my dinner plate and stretched my arms towards the ceiling. Now it was bath time and that was most certainly my favorite part of any day.

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