On Taking the California Bar Exam

You will grow gray hair. You will devote three months to studying, during which time you will lose track of your family and friends. You will make a binder full of outlines. You will memorize more things than you thought humanly possible. You will feel like it’s too much to handle.

You will go to the exam. You will push your breakfast around on your plate. You will beg your readers to send you good thoughts (everything helps).* You will lay in bed awake. Your anxiety will grow as you toss and turn. You will think, if I fall asleep right now, I will get 6 solid hours of sleep. And then, two hours later, you will think, ohmygod, if I fall asleep now I will get four hours of sleep. You will get two hours of restless sleep. If you are lucky.

You will sit in a cold, hard conference center. You will keep your head down for three days straight. You will type. You will bubble. You will suffer from anxiety–and you’re not even the type to suffer anxiety. You will suffer from anxiety, believe me. You will write about the wrong law on part of an essay. You will cry in the hotel room.

When it’s over, you will look at your notes. They told you not to, but you will anyway. You will realize you marked at least three multiple choice answers completely wrong. The other 197 answers? Who knows. You will have a pit in your stomach. A big pit. The biggest pit ever. You will drink champagne, but you will know that it’s nowhere near over. It will sit and fester, that nasty beast, in the back of your head, in that pit in your stomach.

You will regret ever taking the LSAT. You will regret ever going to law school. You will regret taking out loans that could have purchased a small home in some places.

You will wait. And wait. And wait.

And you will pass. Hallelujah, you will pass.

*Thanks for all your good thoughts and prayers, friends. They worked.

  30 comments for “On Taking the California Bar Exam

  1. Amanda
    November 19, 2010 at 8:08 pm

    OMG Janet congratulations!! a really big congratulations! You’re awesome and I knew you could do it!

  2. November 19, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Woo Hoo! Congrats!

  3. November 20, 2010 at 5:35 am

    What a huge accomplishment! Enjoy the relief, it is a huge relief.

  4. November 20, 2010 at 5:44 am

    Oh, congratulations to you!!! What fabulous news!!! YAYAY!

  5. November 20, 2010 at 6:32 am

    Woooooooooo!!!!! Biggest of congratulations! Champagne all around!!!!!

  6. November 20, 2010 at 6:33 am

    Yay! That is great news!!

  7. November 20, 2010 at 7:31 am

    CONGRATULATIONS! Sending imaginary cupcakes your way 🙂

  8. E
    November 20, 2010 at 7:34 am

    Congratulations!!! So how long did it take you to go through schooling up to this point?
    I think law school is fun!
    Great job!

  9. 1 of your many Sarahs :]
    November 20, 2010 at 8:51 am

    I knew you would pass, Janet! I mean, Slice of Pink, Esq. ;]

  10. November 20, 2010 at 9:19 am

    Great job, Janet. Congratulations! Now, I’ll really have to watch what I say, you bein’ all legal and stuff. 🙂

  11. November 20, 2010 at 9:34 am


  12. November 20, 2010 at 9:39 am

    Congrats! I can’t believe they make you wait so long. I am happy to be taking the bar in IL, where the results come out Oct. 1st.

  13. Carmen
    November 20, 2010 at 11:47 am

    Congrats! I’m taking the LSAT in June. I can’t wait to be where you are! I just wish the next three years would hurry up 🙂

  14. November 20, 2010 at 12:18 pm

    How wonderful!!! CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!

  15. November 20, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    awesome! you rock 🙂 now I have to meet you in person so that I can say that I’m friends with a real live lawyer.

  16. November 20, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    Congratulations!! Hooray!!!

  17. Rachel
    November 20, 2010 at 4:02 pm


  18. November 20, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    Hallelujah! Good for you. I’ve followed your blog(lurked) since you were a teacher sponsoring robotics. You inspire me to pursue my dream.

  19. November 20, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    Congratulations! Spending our summer with BarBri paid off after all! yay!
    Now go turn in your books, get your $250 deposit refund, and buy yourself something lovely!!

  20. November 20, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    CONGRATS! Are you going to be made partner now like in TV?!?
    Ha… I kid, I kid. Well sort of because I’m not really sure how that all goes! 🙂

  21. November 21, 2010 at 12:05 am

    What a great achievement. Now you never have to take another exam ever, unless you leave California, but why would you? You are lucky to live in the best area in the whole state. I envy you.

  22. November 21, 2010 at 6:38 am

    Congrats counselor!

  23. November 21, 2010 at 6:57 am

    OMG! Congrats!!!!

  24. November 21, 2010 at 12:14 pm

    The wait time for the bar results is just inhumane. Congratulations on passing!!

  25. November 21, 2010 at 5:56 pm

    Yaaaaay! Congratulations!!

  26. November 21, 2010 at 7:45 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS!! I knew you could do it!

  27. Michelle
    November 22, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    Congrats! I will celebrate by having some wine this evening in your honor!

  28. November 23, 2010 at 11:38 am

    Congrats!!! 🙂

  29. November 23, 2010 at 8:11 pm


  30. November 26, 2010 at 7:42 pm

    that’s quite the accomplishment. congratulations!

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