Do you have a song that just gets you pumped when you need a little inspiration? I think back to the Bills games in Buffalo and T.I.'s 'Bring 'Em Out" blasted in the stadium. People danced and cheered as the Bills came out of the tunnel. Well, a couple of weeks ago, I decided I needed a bar song. I needed a song I could sing in my head that would get my pumped and focused for the task at hand. Hm, decisions, decisions.
Well, I picked a bar song a couple of weeks ago - "Diva" by Beyonce. It has a strong sound, is all about confidence, etc. I was buyin' it. About a week ago though, I started thinking Beyonce's "Bootylicious" might be more appropriate since my butt has expanded while studying for the exam - non-stop studying doesn't leave much time for working out (although hitting the gym had initially been a part of my study plan). Yesterday, my bar song changed again. There's a song from a movie that sings "God, give me strength (do, do, do), God, give me strength." It's all I could think about as I was answering questions. It's the song that kept popping in my head today during six hours of bubbling in a scantron. So for now, it's my bar song. No doubt that will change tomorrow afternoon when this dreaded test is over!!!!!!
The February bar is quite different from the July exam. You see, most people taking the February exam aren't fresh out of law school. Most of my fellow bar examinees are already lawyers, like myself, or re-takers who didn't pass the exam in July. I think that adds to the stress and pressure everyone feels. The "laywers" are expected to know what they're doing and since we already passed a bar exam, this one will be a breeze. Right. I hardly knew what I was doing on the CA exam and I still don't know how I passed. That was also seven years ago and I didn't have two kids to worry about.
The re-takers know exactly where they went wrong on the last exam (you can see your graded test), so there is certainly added pressure when those parts of the exam come up for them. The young lady sitting next to me is a re-taker. I asked her where things went wrong for her - she said it was the MBEs. Ah, the MBEs. That's the portion of the test we did today and it was brutal. I almost raised my hand a couple of times to let the proctor know my test was defective - none of the answer choices available to me were correct! But I figured that wouldn't fly. It's never a good thing when you find yourself guessing over and over again on questions. The MBEs are brutal. It's why people fail the exam. I hated it the first time, I hated it this time.
Tomorrow is the final day of the test. We have to do 12 essays in 6 hours. I had a major meltdown this afternoon when I opened up my first subject to quickly review - we're talking tears, nausea, hyperventilating, you name it. I looked at the first page of my notes and had problems remembering things I studied and "memorized" just a few short days ago. I fah-lipped. I called a fellow test-taker and she just listened and tried to calm me down in my panic. I was able to focus and do some review, but the amount of information is just overwhelming.
Did I mention we're responsible for 25 or 26 subjects here in Texas? Everything from family law to secured transactions to trusts and estates. I've vowed that no matter what, I'll make some stuff up tomorrow if I have to to make it sound like I know what I'm talking about. It's definitely easier to b.s. an essay that a multiple choice question! For that reason, tomorrow may actually be less stressful than today.
One thing that gives me peace is that I'm not the only one feeling like this - panicked, desperate, hopeless, stupid. None of my fellow test-takers are going to be walking into that exam room tomorrow singing "Diva." I'm guessing even those of little faith will be calling to high powers for strength, wisdom, and knowledge. I know I will be.
*Singing - God give me strength (do, do, do), God give me strength)
Now, we'll see what song I'm singing tomorrow afternoon around 3 or 4 p.m. Stay tuned...