I haven’t posted any new material in a while, a long while, and it feels good to be back at it. We get caught up in life with work, family, keeping up the house, that sometimes we forget to make time to do some of things we really enjoy, some of the things that actually make us who we really are.
For example, when someone asks me, “[T]ell me about yourself”, I used to respond with “I’m a Criminal Defense Lawyer” or “I’m from Kerrville, Texas”, etc. But what you do for a living and where you’re from isn’t really who you are. This is tough to understand for a lot of people. And I’m certain that I still don’t fully understand it. Essentially, I’m trying to get to the point that who we are is what we believe, how we treat other people, what kind of tracks we leave behind us, and where we are trying to get to in order to achieve a happy life.
I want to post about something that I see all too often. People come into my office and have been charged with a crime. The look of despair, hopelessness, and even guilt at what is going on now. They have been arrested, finger printed, mug shot taken, clothes traded in for stripes, admonished by a Judge, had to find money to post a bond, and now they have to come talk to a lawyer, who if they hire, is going to cost them more money. Then, you go to court over a period of many months, and live with the uncertainty of what is going to happen when it is finally resolved. The entire process is very demeaning to citizens accused of crimes, it can be depressing, and expensive. What I want everyone that comes into my office to know, is that one wrong act does not define a person. Just because you may have committed a crime doesn’t make you a lifelong criminal. Guess what? You’re still a human being, and you are allowed to make mistakes. Mistakes don’t define a person anymore than achievements define a person. You are who you are, just like you were before any of this happened. Like anything else, this is a learning experience that you will make you stronger. Going to jail may be the best thing that ever happened to you. Sometimes my job requires that I counsel people on some of the non-legal consequences of their actions, and those can be good consequences. That’s’ another foreign concept to me, not all consequences are bad things or punishment. Some consequences include getting sober, seeing the silver lining in a bad situation, and taking time to stop, and enjoy yourself instead of taking life so seriously. My promise to my clients is that if there’s a way to win your case in court, I will do everything I can and know to do to achieve that. And no matter what happens in the courtroom, you will understand that this process is just a process, and you are still the good person you thought you were before it happened.
I truly enjoy sitting down at my keyboard and putting some words together to send a message out to whoever feels like reading it. Hopefully, it’s enjoyable to the audience and not a complete waste of their time. I should make more time for it. And in the spirit of Friday afternoon, we should all make more time to do things just for ourselves. It doesn’t make you selfish, it makes you happier, and if you’re happy, those around you will sense your mood, and it’s contagious. Like catching a happy flu, if you will.