Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Bar Exam Recap

Well- probably no one wants to read this but me (and not even me!)- but I thought I should document the Bar Exam experience just for posterity and so someday our little one can hear about the fun adventure her mommy took just prior to giving birth to her!

Monday, July 24, 2006:

All packed up and ready to go by 11:30 am. Walked Hauser briefly. Mr. Mustard came home from work on his lunch break and followed me over to the Radisson/ Marriot Hotels at the airport. I checked in and got the luggage upstairs with Mr. Mustard's help. After Mr. Mustard left and I had unpacked my things, I discovered that the refrigerator in my room wasn't working. I had packed enough food for all 4 days of the Exam trip- lunchmeat, cheese, etc.- so this was a bad thing. Repacked everything and moved to a new room...then went over to the testing center to get checked in.

The testing center was totally disorganized. I got to my room and there were only two other test-takers there out of the 11 that were assigned to the room. After waiting for the proctor to show up for almost an hour, she finally did. She took my name, then I left and went back to the hotel. Took a bath and studied for awhile. Ordered room service and went to bed early.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006:

Set the hotel's alarm clock for 4:45 am the next morning- the wake up call for 5, and all three other alarms I brought for 5:15. Made some oatmeal, started studying. My body felt like a train had hit it- so much physical pain from not sleeping well from being pregnant, my ankles were swollen, and the carpal tunnel was really really bad. Headed over to the exam site at 8:30 for an 8:45 scheduled start time.

The proctor didn't show up until 9:15 and then didn't get the exam started until much later than that-- I don't know what was going on. At this point, there were 9 total people taking the exam in the room. The girl next to me noticed that there was no air coming into the room and that the windows would not open. After everyone fired up their laptops, it got really really hot in the room- above 100 degrees. In the middle of the test, someone from the hotel came by to apologize for the heat and said it would be fixed by the next day.

Everyone was boiling, and I think most of us were considering taking off our clothes at that point. It was agony! I think I may have been delirious due to the heat at a few points and I don't know if I actually wrote anything coherent during that time.

Because we got started so late, we basically missed our lunch break and only had 15 minutes in between the morning and afternoon sessions. I dashed back to my hotel room and downed a drink box, some string cheese and a turkey sandwich. Then, back to the testing site for the afternoon.

That night I was so beat. I took a bath and tried to study for the next day, but nothing would stick. My back was killing me, and my ankles were bulging. Time for bed.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006:

Woke up early again- ate some oatmeal. My body was in pain, and I had a big big headache. Everything hurt- and I knew that more pain was in order as soon as the exam started.

The Multi-State test was administered this day and it was really quite difficult. Even though I had studied for it a great deal, the questions were not what I expected and many of them made no sense at all. My backpain was increasing, and I started having painful contractions. Oh great, I thought- this is just great...even so, I kept going- why I don't know!

On a brighter note, they did fix the air conditioning by the second day, so at least that was something to be grateful for!

We got a decent lunch break (about an hour)- so I went back to the hotel and laid down. By the afternoon I was really feeling so ill that I didn't care about the exam anymore, so it all of a sudden became much easier. I wasn't thinking so hard about each question, so I just sort of went on intuition. This may have been a bad move, but I really just needed to get through it and get back to the hotel room.

That night, I ordered a very nice room service meal of pork chops with a side of garlic mashed potatos and a salad. It was the best thing I could have done after having lived on turkey sandwiches, cheese, and granola bars for the past three days. I really savored it, and watched some HBO- the movie I, Robot was on with Will Smith. Even though I don't even like that movie, I watched it and thought it was really great. I think my mind was fried.

Afterwards, I took a bath and went to bed. My back was again in agony, and my whole body was just hurting. I couldn't imagine another day of feeling this way.

Thursday, July 26, 2006:

Slept in until 5:15 and then started going over the subjects I thought would be covered for the day. Turns out I was wrong- but I was happy to be wrong. The subjects we got on day 3 were fair and were not my hardest, most difficult subjects, so I was grateful for that. I did the best I could- and still got a little confused in parts. But, overall, I was just really glad that this was the last day of the test.

At lunch, I went back to my hotel room and ate lunch- then back to the exam site to finish up the afternoon.

At the end, I was so glad to be done, I cheered a bit!

In retrospect, I think the Bar Exam is tough- but not as tough as doing it 9 months pregnant. I would never recommend anyone taking it in the third-trimester with pre-eclampsia signs, carpal tunnel, extreme swelling, and all the other physical stuff going on. If I take it in February, I am certain it will be so much easier just because I won't be experiencing contractions during the exam!

Anyway, it's done. I am happy. I did my best, under the circumstances. Now I just have to wait until Thanksgiving to find out the results. Luckily, there is a lot to occupy my time until then!!! :-)

No comments: