If you’ve been following along, you know I was summoned to jury duty and I was super excited about the prospect of spending one day alone in a chair with a book. And eating lunch for 90 minutes! By myself.
I will say, as the day grew closer, I became less excited and a bit more stressed about the logistics of it all. First, I had to prepare my older son for staying longer at preschool. This preparation took some doing–it meant getting him ready to stay on a rest mat amongst his peers for 45 minutes! Plus mentally preparing him for gym class (a first)…it was a bit much for him.
Then there was my milk. I had to squeeze in an extra pumping session each day for about a week leading up to my summons date just to make sure I had enough milk for my baby to drink while I was sitting around reading my book. Since I’m not really separated from him very often, I don’t produce a whole lot for the pump.
I also had to buy him some baby food for the daycare (which he doesn’t usually eat), study bus schedules, and think about how I was going to get the two of us downtown early enough so I could nurse him at drop-off and still make it to the courthouse with enough time to go through security. By the end of it all, the “prize” of a quiet day seemed less exciting.
The night before I was due to appear, I called in and discovered no jurors needed to report the next day. The lawyers must have cleared all the cases out of court. So, all my preparation (and fantasy of private lunch) was for nothing.
Not having to report was a blessing, however. We had a doozy of a night on “jury duty eve” and decided to send our big guy to school the full day regardless, first because it seemed less confusing for him and second, in hopes that I could get in a nap while our baby slept. I was too tired to safely operate a moving vehicle. Imagine if I were asked to judge someone’s guilt? To objectively weigh evidence? Forget about it!
Of course, our baby hit some developmental milestones (clapping his hands! Climbing the stairs!) and didn’t even nap that day. In fact, he was awake for 15 hours straight, so instead of a peaceful day spent reading a book, I had a crazed, manic, stressful day home with a clapping, tired, restless poop machine. Figures.
I’m still glad I chose to move forward with my juror summons rather than postpone. In my case, if I were called up again a year from now, I would be in a more flexible place in terms of nursing, but I might also be more likely to get a trial assignment with a toddler than a baby. I felt certain that my juror service wouldn’t extend beyond one day and it seemed the gamble paid off for me this time, since I didn’t even have to go in!
While I feel a bit smarmy delighting in dodging my civic duty, I am also sure I have many years ahead of me where I’d make a superb juror. By the time my baby weans (hopefully a few more years!), I’ll be better-rested and capable of rational thoughts.
Have you been summoned to jury duty like? Share your experience with us in the comments!