“I Wasn’t Stopped by the Glass Ceiling. I Was Stopped by the Parenthood Ceiling.”
Sometimes, you think your life is going to go in a very particular direction. And then, it doesn’t.
Judith S. Kaye, the first woman to serve as New York’s Chief Judge, died this January at the age of 77. Born in 1938 to Polish Jewish immigrants, she paved the way for women in the legal profession. But, ironically enough, she never actually planned on going into law. What she wanted to be was a writer.
Way back when, I too wanted to be a writer. And, like Judge Kaye, I am the daughter of Jewish immigrants who fostered in me the drive to succeed—to get a parnasa, a career, make a living. I spent my childhood writing stories, but shied away from the uncertain livelihood of a freelance writer. I wanted to soar to the top.
So I went to law school. I planned on using my writing skills to advocate for others and support myself, a real parnasa. I graduated law school and got a job doing just that.
I lasted six years.