Florida Women's Law Group - May 2020

the

WOMEN’S

Advocate

May 2020

A LESSON IN PATIENCE

When Kids Become the Teachers

I knew motherhood would have plenty of lessons, but what I never expected was just how often my children would be the teachers. Last Mother’s Day, I wrote in this newsletter about how I had to grow out of my tendency to play “mama bear” and give my growing kids more independence. Now, as my oldest approaches college-age, I want to talk about another value she and her siblings have imparted to me over the years: the importance of patience. Now, I set out to make time for my kids from the very beginning. Ensuring that they felt valued and important was something deeply important to me because of my own upbringing. My mother loved my brother and me, but it was a different time, and she was a single woman working and getting an education. We were the reason she was working so hard — but that often meant we didn’t get her attention. I remember her constantly asking me to “sit and wait” while she ran important errands, and as a kid, it drove me crazy. While I understand the kind of stress she was under now, a child just doesn’t have that context. At the time, it made me feel unimportant. That’s not something I wanted my kids to go through. So, from being a stay-at-home mom to founding this firm, I always tried to make time for them. The last thing I wanted was to drag them to some boardroom and ask them to sit and wait outside. But even while I was jumping through all these hoops to be physically present for them, I wasn’t always the best at actually slowing down and listening to them. Patience has never been my strong suit, if I’m being honest. It’s the lawyer in me: I want to get to solutions, tackle problems immediately, and, of course, I want to be proven right when there are disagreements. These traits may work well in the courtroom but not the kitchen table. I’ve had to

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take this to heart over the years, and thankfully, my kids have had the patience to help.

This is especially true of my daughters. They helped me realize that whenever they came to me with problems, my response was always to dive into finding solutions. But so often, that’s not what people are actually looking for when they confide in someone. They don’t want solutions; they want to be heard and validated. I’m still learning, but thanks to their honesty, I’m getting better. Ultimately, everyone wants to feel valued and respected. As a parent, that respect can be the most important and the hardest thing to give your kids because it often means giving them room to do things differently. It can be hard to step back, but slowly and surely, I’ve found it’s more than worth it. I’m so proud of the young adults my kids are growing up to be. Laughing with them and learning with them has been the treasure of my life, and that is what I’ll be celebrating this Mother’s Day.

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Here’s to all the things our kids can teach us,

-Heather Qu ick

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time of year to go birding because rising temperatures prompt spring migration. So if you’re eager to begin bird-watching, there’s no better time than now. Here are some tips to get started. EDUCATE YOURSELF Thousands of species of birds span all corners of the globe. That’s why finding them is an exciting prospect — there’s no end to the hunt! Start by researching birds that are native to your location. Purchase a field guide with pictures of each bird and maps of their range and use it to figure out where different birds live. From there, it’s easy to pick your first spotting goal. You can even get yourself extra excited by watching a few bird documentaries. GEAR UP One of the best things about birding is that you don’t need a lot of equipment to do it. As long as you’ve got your field guide and comfortable walking shoes, the only other thing you’ll need is a pair of binoculars. And they don’t have to be fancy. As long as they can zoom in on faraway trees and perches, they’ll work for now. You can always upgrade later. GO EXPLORING Your very first birding excursion is important because you don’t want to be overwhelmed or underwhelmed. So use your field guide to home in on a single bird and go find it. It may be local, or you can plan a trip to a specific bird’s natural habitat. Stay focused and don’t get distracted by other species. The thrill that comes with spotting your first bird will keep you coming back to find the rest. Bird-watching is a wonderful hobby because it’s easy to get started and can last a lifetime. As long as you can walk, drive, or look out a window, you can be a birder. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and find some birds!

Bird-Watching for Beginners

Why May Is the Best Month to Start

Bird-watching is like a lifelong scavenger hunt that you can play anywhere on Earth. The activity provides a mixture of science, travel, and beauty, and it’s a chance to get outside for feathered adventures and quiet reflection. The month of May is a great time of year to go birding because rising temperatures prompt spring migration. So if you’re eager to begin bird-watching, there’s no better time than now. Here are some tips to get started. Bird-watching is like a lifelong scavenger hunt that you can play anywhere on Earth. The activity provides a mixture of science, travel, and beauty, and it’s a chance to get outside for feathered adventures and quiet reflection. The month of May is a great

A HELPING HAND IN THE CLASSROOM

Bring Teachers Into the Conversation Going public about a divorce is one of the most difficult parts of the process. It’s natural to worry about how people will perceive your decision, and just vocalizing what you’ve been going through can be emotionally draining. But if you have minor children, letting their teachers know what your family is going through can be vitally important. ENHANCE STABILITY Divorce will always be hard on children and often makes it feel like their whole world is being turned upside down. School can become a valuable source of normalcy and stability during this transition, but they must have support. A teacher can’t offer that if they’re in the dark on what your child is going through. PROVIDE HELPFUL RESOURCES If a child’s grades fall because of the stress they are under, and their teacher doesn’t have any context for the dip in performance, the classroom can begin to feel like yet another alienating place. An educator who knows your child is facing a difficult time in their life can help give them the resources and emotional support they need to succeed in their studies. Still, it’s important that you approach notifying teachers with care. KEEP YOUR CHILD IN THE KNOW Before you notify their educators, your children deserve to know you are sharing this information. Finding out from their teacher after the fact can 2 Florida Women’s Law Group | 904-549-6553

take them by surprise and may feel like a violation of privacy. Clear the decision with them before moving forward.

EXPECT PRIVACY Finally, you should know that, unlike attorneys, teachers are not under any nondisclosure agreements when it comes to your divorce. They can share what you tell them with school counselors and others at their discretion. Thus, it’s important that you limit the information you share to just the facts. Most teachers will understand the gravity of the situation and the role they can play with minimal details. It can still be a difficult conversation to have. If you need help approaching this discussion, please know you can always reach out to our liaison specialist, Susan Birch at 904-910-0544.

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“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn’t be that women are the exception.” Women Speaking Wisely

–Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Three Great Reads for Facing Divorce HEALINGWORDS

women who can empathize with the challenges you face. But not everyone is comfortable in these sorts of settings, and that’s perfectly valid. So, as an alternative, we wanted to highlight a few great books that can help during such a turbulent time. ‘HAPPENS EVERY DAY: AN ALL-TOO- TRUE STORY’ BY ISABEL GILLIES A brutally honest memoir about the author’s sacrifice in the face of a failing marriage, “Happens Every Day” is all too relatable. But more than her ability to strip away the varnish of her past relationship, Gillies’ true power lies in her rebelliously upbeat attitude. This book is a masterclass in positivity as the author, again and again, refuses to pity her former self and draws strength in the future before her. ‘SACRED COWS: THE TRUTH ABOUT DIVORCE AND MARRIAGE’ BY DANIELLE AND ASTRO TELLER Cowritten by a Ph.D. and a medical doctor, this book is an impressive blend of data-driven

research, wit, and personality. Doctors Danielle and Astro are partners themselves, and both experienced divorce before finding each other. This lighthearted book is their way of delving into the assumptions, misinformation, and cultural stigmas that create such heartache during a separation. The result is a surprisingly powerful book that asks readers to reconsider their perspective on the ways marriages come to an end. ‘FAIR SHARE DIVORCE FOR WOMEN: THE DEFINITIVE GUIDE TO CREATING A WINNING SOLUTION’ BY KATHLEEN MILLER Divorce can cause more than heartache. Written by a licensed CPA with settlement experience, “Fair Share” delves into the financial side of divorce and how women tend to be short-changed in the process. For those grappling with the practical questions of what a breakup would mean for your bank account, this is a must-read guide.

In past editions of this newsletter, we’ve recommended support groups to help ease the pain and confusion surrounding a divorce. These gatherings can be a great source of support and catharsis, letting you speak with

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Inside

Heather’s Mother’s Day Reflection

Bird-Watching for Beginners

The Role Teachers Play in Divorce

Three Great Reads for Facing Divorce

Have You Heard of These Vegan Beauty Brands?

LET YOUR MAKEUP SAVE THE PLANET With These Vegan Beauty Brands

MILK MAKEUP

Reducing animal products isn’t just an animal cruelty concern — it affects the environment too. In the past, animal products have been a staple in the beauty industry, carrying concerning implications for the world around us. But for many, wearing a fresh face of makeup is an essential and empowering part of their daily routine. Luckily, vegan makeup has become easy to shop for and is more affordable than ever. Start with these trusted brands.

Known for its clean and convenient packaging, this vegan brand specializes in travel-friendly skin care and natural makeup looks. If you prefer bold options, they have statement products like their acclaimed tattoo stamps, metallic eye shadows, and face glosses. The Hydro Grip Primer ($15–$30) won Allure’s Best of Beauty 2019 award, and rightfully so! It’s one of the few primers that’ll leave your skin hydrated all day long.

E.L.F. COSMETICS

INIKA ORGANIC

Did you know one of America’s most affordable brands is also completely vegan, hypoallergenic, and cruelty-free? You’ll never go back after trying the Instant Lift Brow Pencil ($2). Not only is it easy to use, but it also comes in a variety of shades. The Baked Highlighter ($4) is also famous for looking a lot more expensive than it is. Plus, you can rest easy knowing your makeup isn’t tested on animals.

Organic, vegan, and halal, this beauty brand has gone above and beyond to provide clean makeup for people of all philosophies. The prices reflect its high-end status, but the products have won multiple industry accolades for achievements in execution and production. The Baked Mineral Bronzer ($65), Certified Organic Liquid Foundation With Hyaluronic Acid ($65), and

Long Lash Vegan Mascara ($45) are some of the brand’s most sought-after products.

Now you can shop happy, healthy, and eco- friendly with any makeup budget!

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