Tag Archives: 3L

A Law School Graduation Message

My school apparently decided that next to a physical graduation, the best option for law school graduates would be a slide-show they can share on FB with their picture and a brief message. 

And, oh. The things I wish I could say. At the end of the day, I’m probably going to choose a nice, boring thank you to friends and family. But here is a non-exhaustive list of things I wish I was snarky enough to get away saying on my graduation slide:

  • Three years of my life I will never get back.
  • I wish they would have told me to fix my necklace. [It’s crooked in my graduation photo]
  • I spent a lot of money for this one slide.
  • To all the attorneys who said not to go to law school, you were right.
  • Are we done yet.
  • This goes out to all the relatives who didn’t think I’d make it to college.
  • I read nearly 800 books while attending law school. What’d you do?
  • 20 years ago I announced I would become a lawyer. Be careful what you wish for.
  • Westlaw 4 Ever
  • This is either going to end in alcoholism or world domination. 
  • Just following in my great, great grandpa’s footsteps.
  • “tutti-frutti, argle-bargle, jiggery-pokery” ~ Justice Scalia
  • Law school taught me to appreciate the masterpiece that is Legally Blonde the Musical.
  • I don’t care what you say, administrative law is sexy.
  • Justice Thomas is the G.O.A.T.
  • Hey, look, Mom, I made it!
  • Thanks to the Federalist Society for providing the only sane space on campus
  • “Your dream stinks. I was talking to her.” ~ Hooked Hand Thug in Tangled. 
  • 1L year scared me to death. 2L year worked me to death. 3L year trapped me in my apartment.
  • My home school graduation was way better than this.
  • Shout out to all the law school meme pages for keeping me sane during finals. 
  • I have a juris doctorate. Why does that not make me a doctor? 
  • I came. I saw. I got a B.
  • I never did make it to law prom.
  • My 2 credits of Trusts and Estates does not qualify me to look at your will.
  • I should have known what was coming when I got cold called twice on my first day.
  • Bring back judicial wigs!
  • “No one actually knows what kind of law they want to do anyway,” everyone in law school after asking you what kind of law you want to practice.



I reserve the right to add to this list. Any suggestions for additions? 

First Last Week of School

And I’m back “live”! Hopefully you all found some good books to read…or avoid…with my posts. 

I’ve started the year off strong with 24 books read so far since January 1! But I’ve been in a lull lately what with school starting again. 

So, yes! I’m back! Back on this blog and back in school. I only have 4 in-class classes but they’re the ones I’ve been pushing off so not my favorites. 

But I will survive them.


Whoot, whoot, 3L year. 

Past Employment

Since I am graduating from a Wisconsin law school, I do not need to take the Wisconsin Bar Exam. I do, however, need to fill out a Wisconsin Bar Application. This includes an exhaustive list of every employer (with attached contact for said employer) I have had since turning 18. 

You would think the hardest employer to find contact for would be, say, Media Trackers, which as far as I can find, no longer exists. Or the family-owned pizza place I worked one summer where the owner died a year later. 

But no. 

Hands down, Sam’s Club wins as the hardest former employer to find contact information for. They’re putting me through the ringer! 

First, I scour the webs for some sort of HR e-mail. For a company that big, you would think they would need to occasionally verify employment. I eventually give in and try try SamsClub.com, go through the little auto-chat guy who is no help, and then wait 20 minutes to talk to a “real person.” He says I have to call the store where I worked. 

Well, probably I should have started there but it has been so long since I worked there (7 years!) I figure any record of me will have long since gone into storage. I call the store. I learn:

They do not have an HR person. 

They have one person who sort of does the job part time.

She is not available.

She does not have an e-mail.

The store does not have an e-mail.

She does not have a direct line. 

I can call the store back when she is working. 

She next works at 6 am on Sunday. Store opens at 8:30.


I did expect some challenge but even this supersedes my expectations. 


Law School Hope

I met with the registrar today. I went in braced for the worst. After all, with TAing and studying abroad and all the other things I crammed into my law school career, who knows what I missed. And let’s just say…it was not a spectacularly fabulous day leading up the meeting. It began with the fire alarm going off as I was getting out of the shower and didn’t exactly go up from there. So, I figured, learning I needed an extra semester of law school would come as no surprise. 

But guess what? I’m only 12 credits shy of graduating.

And I am only a particularly long and tedious bar application away from being able to practice law in Wisconsin this Spring. 

And if I continue my current GPA, I will be able to walk across the stage with honors cords. 

In other words, the end is truly in sight. And I’m not drowning. I feel like I just braced myself to lift a heavy bolder and discovered instead there was nothing there. I’m on the downward slide. I’m going to be a lawyer.

It tastes like hope and I am so shocked by how much that emotion surprises me that I almost want to stick it in a box and bury it out back in case I lose it. 

But it is real. I am going to make it. I am almost there. 

Cane Toss!

Per Wisconsin Law School Tradition, graduating 3Ls run out on the field before the homecoming game, chuck a cane through the goal post, and try and catch it on the other side. Rumor has it that if you catch your cane you will win your first case.

I caught my cane! But….I didn’t make it through the goal post. So who knows what that means. My friend thinks it means my first case will end in a successful settlement halfway through. I think it is more likely I’ll just win the first motion. 

Morning Coffee and Reminiscent Rambles

It is 10:16 am and I have yet to have my morning coffee. This strikes me as a very poor time to write a blog post. But it is also the only downtime I have today so if I’m going to post anything more substantial than, “Going AWOL till Monday. Will fill you in later”…this is it. 

(I just took a sip. Reason slowly breaks through the fog of my brain.)

I met with a 1L yesterday (for coffee! I love coffee.) As I reminisced about the horrors of my first year of law school, I remembered that I gave up coffee for those first 3 months or so. At the time everyone was like, “WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?!”

And to be honest, even now I am like “WHAT WAS I THINKING?!”

(Another sip. Ahhh, warm and delicious.) 

But I was drowning and just trying to survive. My anxiety already spiked through the roof on a daily basis, I did not need a caffeine shot to help it. 

Today I met with a fellow 3L (it was supposed to be for coffee but I could not find parking so we literally drove around for 40 minutes and missed the coffee-getting window. Why do I live in a city?!)

We reminisced about how awful 1L year was. And then how terrible 2L year turned out to be. Then with a sigh, we shrugged and switched to which state bar to take. 

(Three sips in an I’m almost human.)

Lawyers often told me growing up not to go to law school. I was always deeply offended by it. ‘There is no other way to become a lawyer except by going to law school,’ I would think angrily. ‘What unreasonable advice you give!’

But now I understand it. I try not to give the same advice I heard because, honestly, it only made me more stubborn and determined to go. But I understand that the words did not come from a place of job security or mockery. They were genuinely trying to save me from some pretty miserable experiences. 

Yet we go through pain to grow. I don’t think I would repeat 1L and 2L year even if you paid me. (I mean, knowing what I know now it would probably be easier but I am presuming I would repeat without knowing what I know now.) But I don’t regret who I am for having gone through it. 

At least, not today. 

Check back in once I’m actually graduated. Or finished my cup of coffee. 

(Ahhhh, coffee.)

Killing Perfectionism

I sort of tumble through Tuesdays as a general rule of thumb but today felt particularly bad. I actually did the readings for my first class but when the professor called on me, I hadn’t a clue what the answer was. Unfortunately, it proved to be a rather vital point so he pointed at me every time it came up for the rest of class. 

I had about an hour till my second class and I planned to read for it beforehand. But turns out I left my textbook at home. And as it happens, this professor cold calls so I had to own up to not doing the reading so I wouldn’t get called on. It is quite demoralizing to admit to someone that even though you’ve had an entire week to do the readings, you didn’t. 

Then my third class. I did the reading. It didn’t matter; I barely understand a word of Immigration Law. 

And then finally my fourth class, where I don’t have the textbook yet so I didn’t read for it. 

It doesn’t sound too bad listing it like that. But when you add in trying to prep for discussion groups tomorrow and wrapping up a project for my Foundation job and the guilty knowledge that final edits on my law review article are due and, oh, any other number of e-mails and projects slipping out of my grasp….it feels exhausting. 

And I am reminded that every semester I tell myself I won’t listen to the perfectionist in my head. I will do what I can and make the best of how it turns out. But it still stings. I want to do it all. I want to be perfectly prepared for class. I want As. I want to turn in perfect work assignments and spout wisdom to my students and somehow maintain a social life and be a good big sister while I’m at it. 

And I just can’t. I need to intentionally give up my expectations. Physically set them aside and say ‘no.’ So I do. And once I do I think I’m done for good. But no, it sneaks back. Again and again and again. The pressure to Do Better. To be perfect. 

And then I go and forget my textbook at home. 

I don’t know what this semester will bring. I hoped it would be less than last year. From a pure “listing” of things, it is less. But being a 3L comes with new types of responsibility. (If I’m even a 3L, as Thailand hasn’t sent my official transcript to the law school yet so as far as any formal records show, I’m a semester behind and still a 2L…but that’s a rant for another day.) 

I know there is an entire spiritual element missing from this post. God pours many blessings into my life. And sometimes I do recognize and appreciate that fact. But if I’m honest, perfectionism hurts me in my spiritual journey as much as anywhere. I don’t live up to the goals I set for myself. I don’t read the Bible or pray nearly as much as I should. And so I just let that weigh on me, yet another “extra” that doesn’t get accomplished. 

It isn’t so much a battle with perfectionism as a war. Some battles perfectionism wins. Some I win. And some days, like today, it ends in a draw because I’m too tired and confused to process anything.