OP, I hope things are going well as you change directions in your career!
I am a plaintiff's attorney and switching to nursing. I am in the middle of my CNA classes and hope to take the exam on August. I'm so excited! :)
While I used to work at a firm doing employment litigation, the 60-70 hours a week and constant stress made me ill. My father was in the hopsital and I left the job. I thought that at the end, I would have rather spent time with my dad rather than do one more deposition. Also, it didn't help that I didn't get the money I was supposed get. It was then that I figured, why work crazy hours just to make someone else rich? And by the way, I don't think the money was that good to justify not having any kind of life. For plaintiffs lawyers who work on a contingency, it is usually feast or famine, and for the past several years, it was mostly famine.
Right now, in order to support myself, I am doing projects for different law firms through word of mouth. I'm also teaching a class here and there, doing some writing, and selling real estate [i have had my license for over 10 years, but have recently gone active again.]
Everyone, especially my family, thinks I am overeducated and nuts [probably both are true :) ] but I like doing different things and I need to support myself. In any event, I am learning practical, useful skills for a job that hopefully won't be outsourced. I can also help my dad if his medical situation worsens.
I know being a CNA is not a big money making position, but at least it will allow me to work somewhere on a regular schedule and get health insurance, which I need for my medical condition. Also, it will give me chance to see what the facilities are like and go from there. I know this is a stressful job, but it is a different kind of stress, and a kind I can better handle.
Also, I volunteer at the hospital, and have worked at the hospital's memory clinic, which gives me insight to the dementia residents.
As Barbara She says, "do what you love and the money will follow." :)