The pandemic has not been kind to couples. The physical, financial, emotional, mental stressors of remote working/learning/socializing is taking its toll. It is certainly taking its toll on all individuals, but for those couples who pre-pandemic were on shaky ground, the pandemic has now rocked their foundations to the core. I know this because our divorce team has been serving as the first responders to relationship damage.
Our clients are crushed. Divorcing during a national crisis is not for the faint of heart. Co-parenting during COVID is a game changer parents could not have seen coming and as amplified the challenges of raising children in separate households under separate philosophies.
Our court calendars are in crisis. With courthouses trying to keep the public spread at bay, our scheduled time before the judges on cases for hearings and trials are getting moved and pushed further out at a moment’s notice. This creates a backlog and alternatively a string of trials back to back to back.
Our office camaraderie has dimmed since trading our suits for sweatpants and working from home for the last 10 months. We miss each other. We really, really miss each other.
My team is worn thin. Over zoom I can see their shoulders reaching ever so slightly up toward their ears. In our one-on-one monthly meetings, I see glimpses of tears and the familiar resolve to steel up, grin, and bear it.
I decided early in the fall we would be closing our offices for the last 2 weeks in December to allow for much needed restoration. It seemed impossible. We are a small business in the middle of a pandemic – how would we possibly manage this? I needed to be bold and protect my hard-working team.
We started setting goals months ago for client care, for case management, and layers of back-up plans. The whole team shared the vision and desire. We broke the impossible down into manageable targets for productivity, efficiency, and defusing burnout. We looked at and tracked our goals every single week. They sacrificed taking other days off.
And now we are here. By the grace of shared will, unfazed focus, and wholehearted grit, my co-workers will be heading home tomorrow for 2 weeks to get what they need most – rest.
I watched the impossible unfold into reality right before my eyes and promise myself to take this lesson forward into my future.
Break down the actions
Persist with the plan
I want to especially thank my team publicly for all of their hard work this year. They have cheered for, cried about, and comforted our clients over these long hard months. They never once faltered in fulfilling their purpose to do divorce differently and support our clients and their families each step of the way. And now they need to rest.
We wish you a peace-filled holiday and we will enthusiastically see you again in 2021.