Trial is one of those experiences that is simultaneously exhilerating and exhausting. Nothing gets me revved up like a trial. Nothing gives me butterflies or keeps me up at nights like a trial. Trial keeps me in a state of hypervigilance. You have to pay attention to everything that's happening in the courtroom while processing how what is being said affects your case, and thinking about how you're going to respond to what was said, and all the while remembering when to appropriately object, and when not to object even if you properly could because you want the evidence to come in, and, well, you get the picture. Exhilerating and exhausting.
And it really doesn't matter if it's a case you think you can win or one you have no hope of winning. At least not to me. For me to really be prepared for trial, I have to get myself in a place where I believe that I can win. I have to believe that if I do everything I possibly can, as effectively as I can, that I can win the case. It's the only way I feel I can be sure that I give everything I have even in a case that, viewing it from a dispassionate distance, I would realize I have no hope of winning. So, when the case is over, it is just as crushing to lose a case that was a loser all along as it is to lose one that I thought I could win, because I got myself to a place where I thought I could win it, no matter what. Of course, winning a case tends to create a bit of delirium of its own. But win or lose, the overwhelming feeling at the end of a trial is exhaustion.
Unfortunately, there's no time to rest. Because while I was in trial, more new cases have landed on my desk, and, oh yeah, the trial date on that other case is now a few days closer with nothing having been done, and there are 15 messages on my voice mail, and the beat goes on.