I have been called to serve jury duty tomorrow. As much as I relished the civic obligation of voting two weeks ago, I am rattled by the idea of jury duty.
I was originally scheduled to serve this time last year, but I was granted a year’s deferment because of the baby. This summons is the new, improved date. Of course, I am still nursing Gideon on cue, sometimes several times a day. He’s a very attached baby. While I am no longer his sole source of nutrition, it will still be a big deal for him to be away from his mother all day long, or heaven forbid, for a period of days. It’s hard for me to articulate why that is, or why that is important. There are so many mothers for whom being away from their babies is simply a matter of course, and nobody gives them special consideration. I guess I’m afraid that my nursing relationship with my baby will be seen as a luxury and therefore superfluous. It may seem so to others, but it most certainly is not that way to Gideon.
In terms of intellectual challenge and being part of the larger community, I’m totally on board with jury duty. I like the idea of hearing a case and using my wits to evaluate its merits. I like the idea of mixing with a group of people I’ve never met and with whom I have only the task at hand in common. But I have to admit, being away from home for an undetermined length of time is more than a hassle.
The last time I was summonsed, they didn’t end up needing any juries, so it’s possible I’ll be dismissed before the issue ever arises for discussion. If it does arise, though, I hope that the judge hears my situation with understanding. Is it too much to hope that the judge doesn’t have mother issues?!