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Hickey: The Power of iNspiration

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IBA-Hickey-ChristineLater than normal, traffic is unsympathetic to a schedule that is wound tighter than a ten-day clock. Emails bring the iPad, iPhone or blackberry to life earlier than the morning sun and the coffee pot that sputters your wake-up call as you hit the door running. Another case, another client, another fire. More meetings, more deadlines, more decisions. Solving the world’s problems makes lawyering a difficult profession. It’s just another day to run through, run over, and run out of steam. And it’s just another manic Monday.

The reality is, I don’t drink coffee and Just Another Manic Monday is a Bangles song from the eighties. Truth be told, I never liked the song but I sympathized with the person late for work and lamenting the waiting work week. Fast forward to today with a world of iTechnology and our workday begins before our eyes have even opened. Sometimes, you get so busy that the weather out your window is as foreign as a fat-free Big Mac. Sometimes, you just need to stop and be inspired.

I walked to another meeting yesterday. This one was Bar-related; no clients, no controversy. A block of gray in a white outlook calendar that occupied one hour. As it turns out, it took less than an hour to be reminded to exhale and enjoy the day. We had a special guest with us. Not a dignitary or famous sports figure; not a television personality or war hero. A lawyer. Fighting her own fight. She sat at the table as we all did. She came to be with us, to be a part of the meeting and to contribute. She was happy to be there. She was, in all respects, an inspiration.

This lawyer is fighting cancer, as many others are. She is in the middle of treatment that would bring even the bravest and strongest to their knees. Yet, here she sat. Happy to be in this meeting and with the most radiant of smiles it would stop you on the street. She could have been so many other attorneys that we all know, who are battling personal battles and working every day to win their war. But yesterday, it was her and she was a beautiful sight to behold; a very real reminder that inspiration comes in so many different forms and should never be overlooked.

I talked to my son last night about this lawyer. I talked to him when he was predicting that he would be too tired from his football game to run the mile in gym today. I talked to my daughter this morning when she woke up red-eyed, tired and unexcited for the day. I am looking out my window as I write this, appreciating the beautiful sun.

HEAL@indybar.org is something the Bar has created to receive information on attorneys who are grappling with illness or personal crisis and need anything from words of encouragement to help with dinners for children. IndyHEAL, Helping Enrich Attorneys’ Lives, is an IndyBar member-volunteer driven group who will respond to requests, anonymously and discreetly if necessary. Whether a peer, partner, or opposing counsel, we could all use the support of our larger community of lawyer friends to get through trying times.

For me, I am reminded to pass on a smile, to ask the name of the man down the street who waves every day as I bustle by on my way to meetings, and to be happy to be busy. I am glad the sun is shining out my window and even as I squint and duck to see my computer screen, I refuse to shut my blinds. Not today. I have turned off my iPad and turned on iNspiration and I encourage you to do the same.•

Post-script: The gentleman’s name is Frank, and my daughter was sent home with pink-i. The message remains the same!

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  1. On a related note, I offered the ICLU my cases against the BLE repeatedly, and sought their amici aid repeatedly as well. Crickets. Usually not even a response. I am guessing they do not do allegations of anti-Christian bias? No matter how glaring? I have posted on other links the amicus brief that did get filed (search this ezine, e.g., Kansas attorney), read the Thomas More Society brief to note what the ACLU ran from like vampires from garlic. An Examiner pledged to advance diversity and inclusion came right out on the record and demanded that I choose Man's law or God's law. I wonder, had I been asked to swear off Allah ... what result then, ICLU? Had I been found of bad character and fitness for advocating sexual deviance, what result then ICLU? Had I been lifetime banned for posting left of center statements denigrating the US Constitution, what result ICLU? Hey, we all know don't we? Rather Biased.

  2. It was mentioned in the article that there have been numerous CLE events to train attorneys on e-filing. I would like someone to provide a list of those events, because I have not seen any such events in east central Indiana, and since Hamilton County is one of the counties where e-filing is mandatory, one would expect some instruction in this area. Come on, people, give some instruction, not just applause!

  3. This law is troubling in two respects: First, why wasn't the law reviewed "with the intention of getting all the facts surrounding the legislation and its actual impact on the marketplace" BEFORE it was passed and signed? Seems a bit backwards to me (even acknowledging that this is the Indiana state legislature we're talking about. Second, what is it with the laws in this state that seem to create artificial monopolies in various industries? Besides this one, the other law that comes to mind is the legislation that governed the granting of licenses to firms that wanted to set up craft distilleries. The licensing was limited to only those entities that were already in the craft beer brewing business. Republicans in this state talk a big game when it comes to being "business friendly". They're friendly alright . . . to certain businesses.

  4. Gretchen, Asia, Roberto, Tonia, Shannon, Cheri, Nicholas, Sondra, Carey, Laura ... my heart breaks for you, reaching out in a forum in which you are ignored by a professional suffering through both compassion fatigue and the love of filthy lucre. Most if not all of you seek a warm blooded Hoosier attorney unafraid to take on the government and plead that government officials have acted unconstitutionally to try to save a family and/or rescue children in need and/or press individual rights against the Leviathan state. I know an attorney from Kansas who has taken such cases across the country, arguing before half of the federal courts of appeal and presenting cases to the US S.Ct. numerous times seeking cert. Unfortunately, due to his zeal for the constitutional rights of peasants and willingness to confront powerful government bureaucrats seemingly violating the same ... he was denied character and fitness certification to join the Indiana bar, even after he was cleared to sit for, and passed, both the bar exam and ethics exam. And was even admitted to the Indiana federal bar! NOW KNOW THIS .... you will face headwinds and difficulties in locating a zealously motivated Hoosier attorney to face off against powerful government agents who violate the constitution, for those who do so tend to end up as marginalized as Paul Odgen, who was driven from the profession. So beware, many are mere expensive lapdogs, the kind of breed who will gladly take a large retainer, but then fail to press against the status quo and powers that be when told to heel to. It is a common belief among some in Indiana that those attorneys who truly fight the power and rigorously confront corruption often end up, actually or metaphorically, in real life or at least as to their careers, as dead as the late, great Gary Welch. All of that said, I wish you the very best in finding a Hoosier attorney with a fighting spirit to press your rights as far as you can, for you do have rights against government actors, no matter what said actors may tell you otherwise. Attorneys outside the elitist camp are often better fighters that those owing the powers that be for their salaries, corner offices and end of year bonuses. So do not be afraid to retain a green horn or unconnected lawyer, many of them are fine men and woman who are yet untainted by the "unique" Hoosier system.

  5. I am not the John below. He is a journalist and talk show host who knows me through my years working in Kansas government. I did no ask John to post the note below ...

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