Last week I got a letter in the mail.  It wasn’t a bill. It wasn’t an ad with coupons for Hy-Vee.  It wasn’t the reminder that I need to schedule my dentist appointment.  It was the worst mail ever - a summons for jury duty.

I have had all the feelings that go along with that summons and opening up that envelope with the news that your life will soon be up in the air for two weeks.  Because of that white envelope, I went through some similarities to the stages of grief and loss.

Stage 1: Denial & Isolation

When that envelope was handed to me with the words, “You got mail today” I immediately knew it wasn’t a million dollars in that envelope or a card from a friend that isn’t on Facebook.  I didn’t even have to open it and I knew I had jury duty...again! I immediately said phrases like, “No! I already had this. It’s got to be a mistake!” I just couldn’t do jury duty right now and there had to be a clause or something in the middle of the legal mumbo jumbo that would get me out.  I started to retreat into all my feelings as my family was starting to help fill out the form for me so it could get mailed back.  They were so excited for me and I continued to look for loopholes and mistakes so I could get out of jury duty.

Stage 2: Anger

As I was getting asked my birthdate and all my personal info for the form...something started to brew inside.  That fury and heat was stirring and I was starting to get feisty. I was getting mad because I just did this a few years ago and had to turn my organized, mom life schedule upside-down during those weeks of uncertainty.  I don't have time for this and I just figured out all the schedules for my kiddos during my selected time frame.  My family knew at this point to calmly step away from the jury duty summons forms and walk away and just plan on making supper themselves...because I was done doing anything for the day.

Stage 3: Bargaining

Ok.  I know.  I have to do this jury duty thing.  If I don’t show up, a sheriff will at work and I’m not sure I want that to happen.  (I’m still new around here so that really isn’t the impression I want to give to my boss).  I think I can do this...but, I need to juggle stuff quite a bit to make it happen. I can still do my job - I’m sure - cause I’m supermom and can juggle summer sports schedules and activities so I’m sure I can handle one little thing like jury duty too.  

Stage 4:  Depression

I can’t do this.  I am not invincible.  I don’t want to do this.  Where is my chocolate flavored coffee?

Stage 5: Acceptance

To be honest, I’m still working on this one.  It is my civic duty - I get that - but I’ve already done it and I know a whole lot of other people that actually want the chance.  I feel like I am taking away their opportunity. ;) Still...I will make the call to find out if my number has been chosen and my kids wil just have to figure out how to get to their baseball games and their summer activities on their own...cause momma won't be home.

I am wondering if I can do a few Facebook Live posts from inside the courtroom or snap a few selfies with the staff.  ;) I’m sure that is a “no” but I do have several friends on the inside that might help me get a few if I end up being one of the chosen ones.  

I’ll share more of this awesome jury duty journey over on my Instagram and Facebook page.  Maybe...I’ll see some of you too...and we can be jury duty friends!

Listen to Jessica Williams from 10 am until 2 pm on Y105FM!


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